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Varsity Cup | Durban
16:30 (GMT) | 20-03-2017
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Preview: Varsity Cup, Round Eight

Sun, 19 Mar 2017 19:15

MOVING DAY: With just two round-robin matches remaining, six teams remain in the hunt to claim a play-off spot and this week could see some teams secure their spot. Tauriq Ebrahim reports.

Victory for log leaders UP-Tuks and second-placed Maties should secure their spots in the semifinals while Shimlas will need to shake off their recent slump to keep themselves in touch with the top two sides.

UP-Tuks have the luxury of playing at home in the final match of the round against UCT-Ikeys, who have been inconsistent throughout. The home side though are in a rich vein of form and should fancy themselves to bag a bonus-point victory to retain their top spot.

Maties make the trip to Bloemfontein to face basement-dwellers CUT-Ixias. The home side is yet to claim a victory in the competition but have already proven that they can push big teams all the way. Maties are coming off a bye week and are fresh for this encounter. The fact that they saw themselves being overtaken by Tuks should serve as motivation to reclaim top spot.

Shimlas host the Madibaz and, given their recent form, the Port Elizabeth students are going to be a handful. The Madibaz have managed just one victory thus far but have been unlucky in a few of their matches.

The home side, who are five points off the top two and in fourth place, will need to win this one to put a bit of a buffer between themselves and fifth-place NWU-Pukke - who are on a bye this week.

The match of the round gets the action underway as UJ face Johannesburg rival Wits. UJ are on four-match unbeaten run and will be eyeing a fifth consecutive victory to guarantee themselves a semifinal spot.

Wits, on the other hand, are also in good form as their young squad continues to impress since their Round Six victory over Pukke. The equation for Wits is simple. Win and remain in the hunt for a semifinal spot, lose and kiss your hopes goodbye.

All the Round Seven fixtures:

UJ v Wits
(Johannesburg, Kick-off: 16.45, 14.45 GMT)

UJ: 15 Ewan Adams, 14Ronald Brown, 13 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 12 Jaco Fourie, 11 Godfrey Ramaboea, 10 Divan Nel, 9 Johan Esterhuizen, 8 Jo-Hanko De Villiers, 7 Wian Conradie, 6 Gavin Delport, 5 Adrian Bester, 4 Kevin Du Randt, 3 Nico Du Plessis, 2 Jannes Snyman (captain), 1 Waldo Weideman.
Replacements: 16 Le Roux Baard, 17 Kyle Kruger, 18 Chergin Fillies, 19 Reinhardt Nothnagel, 20 Devon Mare, 21 Carlisle Jordan, 22 Peter Walters, 23 Willem Massyn.

Wits: 15 Gianni Lombard, 14 Kwanele Ngema, 13 Wandisile Simelane, 12 Brandan Hewitt, 11 Luxolo Ntsepe, 10 Warren Gilbert (captain), 9 Ruan Cloete, 8 Constant Beckerling, 7 Conor Brockschmidt, 6 Ruan Macdonald, 5 Rhyno Herbst, 4 Graham Logan, 3 Luvuyo Pupuma, 2 CJ Conradie, 1 CJ Greeff.
Replacements: 16 Justin Brandon, 17 Brandon Palmer, 18 Pascal Snyman, 19 Jethro de Lange, 20 Tyrone Green, 21 Manuel Rass, 22 Joshua Jarvis, 23 Ameer Williams.

Referee: Jaco Pretorius
Assistant referees: Local
TMO: Johan Greeff

CUT-Ixias v Maties
(Bloemfontein, Kick-off: 18.30, 16.30 GMT)

CUT: 15 Waldo Putter, 14 Mosego Toolo, 13 Gert Cronje, 12 Ruan Wasserman, 11 Olwethu Ndakisa, 10 Martin Jacobs, 9 Ruben Heymans, 8 Stefan Kruger, 7 Vincent Maruping, 6 JP Smal, 5 Brendan Verster, 4 Kian Skippers, 3 Chrisjan du Toit, 2 Henco Smit, 1 Kabous Van Schalkwyk.
Replacements: 16 Stefan Jacobs, 17 Kyle Ess, 18 Francois du Toit, 19 Andre Venter, 20 Sylvester Makakole, 21 Dean Jacobs, 22 Denver Kleu, 23 Diederick Muller.

Maties: 15 Tiaan Swanepoel, 14 Craig Barry (captain), 13 Michal Haznar, 12 Jan Venter, 11 Edwill van der Merwe, 10 Reinhardt Fortuin, 9 Albertus de Wet, 8 Stephan Streicher, 7 Ernst van Rhyn, 6 Mitchell Carstens, 5 Johannes Momsen, 4 John Groenewald, 3 Jacobus van der Merwe, 2 Craig Corbett, 1 Niel Oelofse.
Replacements: 16 Shane Farmer, 17 Wesley Adonis, 18 Carel Swart, 19 Ruben de Villiers, 20 Nicholas Edberink, 21 Brendan Nell, 22 Theo Stapelberg, 23 Duncan Saal.

Referee: Ricus van der Hoven
Assistant referees: Local

Shimlas v NMMU-Madibaz
(Bloemfontein, Kick-off: 18.30, 16.30 GMT)

Shimlas: 15 Sechaba Motsoela, 14 Vuyani Maqina, 13 Carel-Jan Coetzee, 12 Lihleli Xoli, 11 Marco Mason, 10 Nicholas Naude, 9 Albertus Erasmus, 8 Nardus Erasmus, 7 Phumzile Maqondwana, 6 Benji Janse van Vuuren, 5 Nicolaas Immelman, 4 Neil Claassen, 3 Ruan Kramer, 2 Anrich Alberts, 1 Johan Kotze.
Replacements: 16 Francois Steyn, 17 Kwenzokuhle Blose, 18 Thabiso Msiza, 19 Raymond Woest, 20 Musa Mahlasela, 21 Dian Badenhorst, 22 Henco Posthumus, 23 Wilhelm Kotzenberg.

Madibaz: 15 Lindelwe Zungu, 14 Athenkosi Mayinje, 13 Ivan-John Du Preez, 12 Andile Jho, 11 Jixie Molapo, 10 Thomas Kean, 9 Rouche Nel, 8 Kevin Kaba (captain), 7 Henry Brown, 6 Stephanus Nieuwoudt, 5 Reyno du Toit, 4 Wynand Grassmann, 3 Nicholas Oosthuizen, 2 Jean-Pierre Jamieson, 1 Xandre Vos.
Replacements: 16 Nathan Gogela, 17 Tembelihle Yase, 18 Nicolas Roebeck, 19 Hayden Tharrat, 20 Justin Hollis, 21 Lovu Claassen, 22 Simon Bolze, 23 Siphumelele Msutwana.

Referee: Jaco Kotze
Assistant referees: Local

UP-Tuks v UCT-Ikeys
(Pretoria, Kick-off: 19.00, 17.00 GMT)

UP-Tuks: 15 Divan Rossouw, 14 Dewald Naude, 13 Adrian Maebane, 12 Impi Visser, 11 Sibahle Maxwane, 10 Marthinus de Beer, 9 Andre Warner, 8 Clyde Davids, 7 Christiaan Massyn, 6 Eduan Lubbe, 5 Aston Fortuin, 4 Brian Leitch, 3 Johan Fouche, 2 Cornelius Els, 1 Andrew Beerwinkel.
Replacements: 16 Jan-Henning Campher, 17 Jacobus Holtzhausen, 18 Marius Verwey, 19 Juan-Re Swanepoel, 20 Embrose Papier, 21 Keanan van Wyk, 22 Joshua Stander, 23 Gerhardus Steenekamp.

UCT-Ikeys: TBC

Referee: Vusi Msibi
Assistant referees: Local
TMO: Willie Vos

Varsity Shield

UWC have already sealed top spot on the log and can head into their final round-robin match against Walter Sisulu with a depleted team, if they wish. The Mthatha side are looking to gain a play-off spot, so will be eyeing nothing but victory in their final home game of the competition.

CPUT can secure themselves a home semi-final with victory over TUT in Wellington as the Cape side trail second placed UFH by four points.

TUT has an outside mathematical chance of sneaking into the semi-finals but they would need to firstly beat CPUT and rely on other results going their way.

UKZN-Impi are in the same boat as TUT, as they line up to face basement dwellers Rhodes in Durban. Victory is a must for the Durban-based students and they would need to rely on WSU losing to UWC to sneak into the play-offs.

(Wellington, Kick-off: 18.30, 16.30 GMT)

Referee: Archie Sehlako
Assistant referees: Local

UKZN-Impi v Rhodes
(Durban, Kick-off: 18.30, 16.30 GMT)

Referee: Pieter Maritz
Assistant referees: Local

(Mthatha, Kick-off: 18.30, 16.30 GMT)

Referee: Stephan Geldenhuys
Assistant referees: Local

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UWC, UFH bag home semis

Tue, 21 Mar 2017 09:50

VARSITY SHIELD WRAP: UWC booked themselves a home semi-final with an impressive 46-24 win against WSU in Mthatha on Monday.

UWC have now won all their fixtures since their narrow 31-32 defeat against UFH in Round Two at the Davidson Stadium in Alice.

The victory means that UWC top the table, and will face WSU in the semi-finals in Bellville on March 27.

Elsewhere, UKZN registered a 31-13 win against the struggling Rhodes University to book their spot in the play-offs.

In Cape Town, CPUT secured a 39-18 win against TUT. Unfortunately for the Cape Town-based side, they end the round-robin fixture fifth on the log after being docked 11 points for fielding five ineligible players earlier in the competition.

We take a look at Monday’s Action!

WSU 24-46 UWC

Fresh from a bye week, UWC came rejuvenated and more eager to cement their spot at the top. And after just 15 minutes of play, the visitors took a 12-0 lead.

WSU struggled defensively and failed to register any points in the first half.

UWC's tries came in fast and before the half-time break, the visitors added to their tally to take a 29-0 advantage to the lockers.

As the second half commenced WSU faced an uphill battle which they were eager to overcome. The hosts finally got possession in the right spaces and broke their duck to trail 16-29.

Despite WSU's efforts, UWC proved just too strong as they went on to score a double and sealed the win.

Referee: Stephan Geldenhuys
Assistant referees: Local

UKZN-Impi 31-13 Rhodes

In the 23rd minute, Rhodes took the lead as they finally broke through the defense and scored the first converted try of the match, 8-0.

After 10 minutes of relentless attacks, the Rhodes' defense struggled to keep UKZN out and the hosts pulled on back to trail 5-8.

And minutes before the break, UKZN took the lead as they scored a second try.

After the break, UKZN added to their score with a converted try to lead 18-8.

Rhodes needed something and they needed it quickly, and just before the hour mark, the visitors narrowed the margin to just five points with a great try of their own.

However, the celebration was short-lived as UKZN made sure to take the match out of reach with two unanswered tries and sealed the win.

Referee: Pieter Maritz
Assistant referees: Local

CPUT 39-18 TUT

It was a slow start. Both teams were hesitant to attack, however, the hosts started to seized control of the match. And just before the first strategy break, they bagged two tries to take the 13-0 lead.

The strategy break could not come at a better time for the visitors. After a stern word from the mentors, TUT were on the scoreboard with a converted try to trail 8-13.

But CPUT produced a powerful attack, and the hosts were rewarded with a converted try and took a 21-8 lead at the break.

With 10 minutes left on the clock, CPUT enjoyed possession and for every TUT question, the hosts had an answer.

Both teams added to their tally, but it was the Cape Town-based side who outran their opposition to record the win.

Referee: Archie Sehlako
Assistant referees: Local