RUGBY UNION : Honiball conquers England

Natal 33 England A 25
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The Independent Online
Henry Honiball, the former Springbok fly-half, kicked England A to defeat with a 23-point haul in a scrappy game dominated by the boot in Durban on Saturday. He landed six penalties, a conversion and a drop goal after taking over the kicking duties from Hugh Reece-Edwards, who had missed two early penalties.

Both sides scored two tries, but the England A fly-half Paul Grayson came off second best to Honiball with 15 points from four penalties and a drop-goal.

England took the lead with the first of Grayson's penalties. He and Honiball then traded kicks to make it 6-6 midway through the first half. Then Paul Hull fumbled inside his own 22 and the Natal forwards were quick to seize the advantage. Pieter Muller was held up just short of the English line, but John Allan picked up and was driven over by his colleagues.

Three more penalties saw Natal leading 16-12 just before the interval, when Hull produced some magic in his own 22 to slip three tackles and send the ball spinning out to the right, Ian Hunter finally going over in the corner to give England A a 17-16 lead at the interval.

Honiball's boot put Natal back in charge in the opening 10 minutes of the second half and, with England tiring, James Small went over in the corner after some excellent approach work from Wahl Bartmann. Trailing 33-20, England produced a final flurry to send Stuart Potter over in the corner.

Natal: Tries Allan, Small; Conversion Honiball; Penalties Honiball 6; Drop goal Honiball. England A: Tries Hunter, Potter; Penalties Grayson 4; Drop goal Grayson.

NATAL: H Reece-Edwards; J Small, P Mller, D Muir, C van der Westhuizen; H Honiball, K Putt; R Kempson, J Allan, A Garvey, M Andrews, S Atherton, W Bartmann (capt), G Teichmann, D Kriese.

ENGLAND A: P Hull (Bristol); I Hunter (Northampton), D Hopley (Wasps), S Potter (Leicester), J Sleightholme (Bath); P Grayson, M Dawson (Northampton); R Hardwick (Coventry), M Regan (Bristol), D Garforth (Leicester), G Archer (Newcastle Gosforth), R West (Gloucester), J Hall (Bath, capt), A Diprose (Saracens), N Back (Leicester).