Wits keep 'bigger picture' in mind

Tue, 31 Jan 2017 11:37
Large kwanele ngema wits 800

VARSITY CUP REACTION: Despite being narrowly edged in their opening Varsity Cup match, Wits will continue to add value to the broader Lions philosophy by playing an exciting brand of rugby.

Conditions were not ideal for a ball-in-hand game with heavy rain falling prior to kick-off, however, head coach Hugo van As gave credit to both sides for their persistence in wanting to keep the game flowing.

"Both sides tried to carry the ball under the tough conditions and I thought we adapted quite well. We didn't execute the plan properly, so there is room for improvement on the execution of the game plan and tactics.

"There were a couple of times when they [Shimlas] looked dangerous but that was when we went off our structure. I can't be too hard on the team because they also need to play what they see in front of them.

"After falling behind, we played exceptionally well to get ourselves in front again and we had a great opportunity to add more pressure onto Shimlas and have them chase the game. But the team realises the difference between Shield and Cup. Here [in Cup] you only get one or two opportunities and if you don't use it, you lose games.

"We want to add value to the bigger picture by buying into what Johan Ackermann and the [Lions] union stands for. So our approach will be to carry the ball more and to play and see what the opposition offers.

"If they [the opposition] give you the space and time to attack then we will play that. It has a lot to do with what the players see on the day and what your opponents allow, but our approach will be leaning towards building an innings and keeping ball in hand," Van As told rugby365.com.

Wits were punished for ill-discipline in the closing stages of the first half that saw them concede 14 points while having a player in the sin bin, but van As won't read much into the yellow cards they received.

"I have no doubt about the discipline of this team so we won't make a big thing about it. I think all sides will have a challenge over the next few weeks to adapt to the new regulations regarding high tackles and contact around the neck area.

"We knew that we will get punished if our discipline is bad, so we will address it again and refine the small disciplines," he added.

By Tauriq Ebrahim
@Tauriq365
@rugby365com

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sat, 24 February 2018
Sunwolves v Brumbies 04h15 Tokyo
Crusaders v Chiefs 06h35 Christchurch
Waratahs v Stormers 08h45 Allianz Park
Treviso v Connacht 12h00 Stadio Monigo
Lions v Jaguares 13h05 Johannesburg
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Ireland v Wales 14h15 Aviva Stadium
Harlequins v Newcastle Falcons 14h30 Twickenham Stoop
Gloucester v Wasps 14h30 Kingsholm
Bath v Sale Sharks 14h30 Recreation Ground
Bulls v Hurricanes 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Scotland v England 16h45 BT Murrayfield
Ospreys v Cheetahs 17h30 Liberty Stadium
Scarlets v Ulster 19h35 Parc y Scarlets
Sun, 25 February 2018
Zebre v Cardiff Blues 13h00 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
London Irish v Worcester Warriors 13h00 Madejski Stadium
Saracens v Leicester Tigers 15h30 Allianz Park
Fri, 02 March 2018
Blues v Chiefs 06h35 Eden Park
Reds v Brumbies 09h00 Suncorp Stadium
Kings v Dragons 17h35 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Edinburgh v Munster 19h35 Myreside
Cardiff Blues v Treviso 19h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Ulster v Glasgow Warriors 19h35 Kingspan Stadium
Harlequins v Bath 19h45 Twickenham Stoop
Sat, 03 March 2018
Sunwolves v Rebels 22h00 Tokyo
RESULT SCORE
Fri, 23 February 2018
France v Italy 34 | 17
Leinster v Kings 64 | 7
Dragons v Edinburgh 12 | 25
Munster v Glasgow Warriors 21 | 10
Rebels v Reds 45 | 19
Highlanders v Blues 41 | 34
Mon, 19 February 2018
NWU-Pukke v UJ 18 | 15
Maties v CUT-Ixias 75 | 12
UCT-Ikeys v Shimlas 27 | 32
NMMU-Madibaz v Wits 29 | 32
Sun, 18 February 2018
Dragons v Treviso 15 | 18
Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 13 | 7
Sat, 17 February 2018
Cardiff Blues v Munster 25 | 18
Lions v Sharks 26 | 19
Leinster v Scarlets 20 | 13
VARSITY CUP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Maties 4 4 0 0 19
Wits 4 3 0 1 15
Shimlas 4 3 0 1 14
UCT-Ikeys 4 2 0 2 11
NWU-Pukke 3 2 0 1 10
UJ 3 1 0 2 6
CUT-Ixias 3 1 0 2 5
NMMU-Madibaz 3 0 0 3 3
UP-Tuks 3 0 0 3 2