Week two of Varsity Cup gave us another surprise when Wits made it two out of two and beaten defending champions Tuks at home.
This is the second defeat for Tuks after they lost at home against Shimlas last week leaving them seventh on the log after two weeks of varsity rugby.
Wits came out guns blazing with both teams trying to take control of the match and it was Tuks that got first points on the board when Seerane got through the Wits defence.
After the try Wits immediately requested the Power Play which resulted in Sicelo Champion going over.
This gave Wits a 9-7 lead and they kept the pressure on Tuks which resulted in a great try for Ngema in the corner.
Suddenly Wits where 18-7 in the lead and Tuks had to work hard to get back into the game and onto the scoring board.
Tuks were rewarded with a try just before halftime when Guma went over in the corner to make the scores 18-14 at halftime.
Wits had a great start to the second half with Kapepula scoring another try in the corner showing his speed.
With a lead of 25-14 the game become a hard fought battle between the two team with no one really getting the upper hand.
Guma got over in the corner again for Tuks but Wits were able to hold on to a great victory over Tuks.
FNB Player That Rocks: Tyrone Green (FNB Wits)
FNB Wits: 25
Tries: Sicelo Champion, Kwanele Ngema, Kasende Kapepula,
Cons: Christian Humphries (3)
FNB UP-Tuks: 19
Tries: Toko Seerane, Xolisa Guma x2
Cons: Tinus De Beer
In the earlier game UCT got their first win of the season when they beat MNNU 27-17 at the end.
It was by no means an easy game for UCT as the scoreboard changed hands throughout the match.
UCT won the battle upfront which lay the foundation for the win with the Madibaz struggling in the set pieces.
For FNB UCT, they take their first win of the season, as well as an away win which will be vital in this year’s Varsity Cup.
FNB Player That Rocks: Pieter Schoonraad (FNB UCT)
FNB Madibaz: 17
Tries: Simon Bolze, Siphumelele Msutwana
Con: Simon Bolze
Pen: Simon Bolze (2)
FNB UCT: 27
Tries: Pieter Schoonraad, Nyasha Tarusenga, Cuan Hablutzel
Con: Karl Martin, Lohan Lubbe
Pen: Karl Martin
In a great match between FNB UJ and FNB CUT at the University of Johannesburg Stadium, fans came out in their numbers to hand the home side leverage over a stubborn FNB CUT side as FNB UJ won 48-21.
It was a nervy start from the Orange Army as FNB CUT made their intensions clear. They applied great pressure, making sure that they don’t play in their own half. Heinrich Bitzi had a great kicking game, managing to expose a lot space in the FNB UJ half.
FNB CUT kicked a great penalty to put the Free State side ahead. Bitzi from FNB CUT had another opportunity to make it 0-6 but that wasn’t the case. With FNB CUT not taking their chances, FNB UJ made a break through the captain, Snyman, intercepting a pass from FNB CUT to score the first try for FNB UJ. The fans were soon celebrating Snyman’s exceptional pace.
Overall it was a fairly contested and a real joy to watch. There were great moments from both teams – Heinrich Bitzi’s boot, Johannes Snyman’s pace – it was end-to-end stuff.
Just before the end of first half FNB CUT received a yellow card, also missing an easy try through Heinrich Bitzi, and one could feel the momentum shifting. Jean-Luc Cilliers became clinical in front of the poles, the passing was smooth developing great combinations amongst the team.
In the second half FNB UJ came back guns blazing, aiming to win it for the fans. Mpofu Malembe showed great tenacity to cut through the FNB CUT defence and score an amazing solo try. With the spirits high, Ruan Brown registered another try to put the match out of reach, thanks to Jean-Luc Cilliers with the golden boot. Towards the end FNB UJ looked relaxed and steady, to seal the game 48-21.
FNB UJ: 48
Tries: Johannes Snyman, Mpofu Malembe, Ruan Brown, Thian Bradley, Jaco Fourie and Kiewit Cohen
Cons: Jean-Luc Cilliers (6)
Pens: Jean-Luc Cilliers
FNB CUT: 21
Tries: Ruan Smit
Cons: Heinrich Bitzi (3)
Wing Duncan Saal scored a hat-trick of tries as FNB Maties beat FNB Shimlas 56-21 at the Danie Craven stadium on Monday evening
An impressive 15 237 supporters turned up at the Danie Craven stadium for FNB Maties’ first home game of the season and the supporters were treated to a stellar performance by the Maroon Machine. Flank Marno Redelinghuys barged over the line from close range for the home team to score the first of their seven tries. It took only five minutes for FNB Shimlas to hit back, however in the 10th minute to level the scores at 7-7.
It was off a FNB Maties error: FNB Shimlas latched onto a loose ball which would find inside centre Saida Xamlashe who raced to the tryline in the face of a disorganised FNB Maties defence. A second try by FNB Maties via wing Edwill van der Merwe prompted the visiting FNB Shimlas side to call for a Power Play. Both FNB Maties centres were off and yet FNB Shimlas were unable to make their numerical advantage count. In fact, it was FNB Maties who added to their tally with a penalty via the boot of flyhalf Chris Smith for a lead of 17 – 7 after 22 minutes.
FNB Shimlas enjoyed much of the possession after the first strategy break and had the edge on attack, yet in the face of a determined FNB Maties defence, their efforts were found wanting. It would be in the 31st minute of the game where the stadium would be brought to its feet. The home team fed off the visitors’ error. The ball found van der Merwe 5m from his try line who found a racing Duncan Saal, who would sprint 80m for a try in the corner and five minutes later it would be the man in the pink shorts for FNB Maties, Saal again who would score under the posts for a converted try. Saal rounded off his hat-trick in the 68th minute in similar fashion as his second.
FNB Shimlas wing Athi Halom would score a good individual try for his team on the stroke of halftime. His well weighted chip, which he collected and dotted down in the corner was converted to give respectability to the halftime score of 33-14 to the home side.
While a spirited performance from FNB Shimlas in the second half saw them add one try to their half-time tally via Xamlashe, the home team never lost their dominance scoring three tries of their own including one by Smith who took the score to 56-21.
FNB Player That Rocks: Duncan Saal (FNB Maties)
FNB Maties: 56
Tries: Marno Redelinghuys; Edwill van der Merwe; Duncan Saal (3); Chippie Oelofse; Chris Smith
Cons: Chris Smith (5); Reinhardt Fortuin
Pens: Chris Smith
FNB Shimlas: 21
Tries: Saida Xamlashe (2); Athi Halom
Conversions: Lubabalo Dobela; Charl Naude (2)