UJ, Maties, Shimlas still undefeated in Varsity Cup
February 23, 2016
Third time is not the charm for FNB Ikey Tigers, who go down to FNB Pukke, while FNB UJ were comfortable victors over FNB CUT. The table-topping FNB Maties extend their unbeaten run against FNB Tuks in Round Three and FNB Shimlas remained unbeaten after hosting FNB Madibaz.

Match Report – FNB UCT vs FNB NWU-Pukke

The FNB Ikey Tigers suffered their third straight defeat in this year’s FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International, after they went down 22-6 against FNB NWU-Pukke. Fans and players alike would have been hoping for a turnaround of fortune, but things didn’t go the way of the hosts at the cold and windy Green Mile.

FNB Pukke got on the scoreboard after only six minutes, with Rhyno Smith putting the visitors three points up after his team earned a penalty. It was only seven minutes later that Wilmar Arnoldi scored FNB Pukke’s first try of the night, with Rhyno Smith easily converting.

The visitors scored again just after thirty minutes of the game had been played, with Rhyno Smith converting again. It was only on the stroke of halftime that the FNB Ikey Tigers got some points of their own through a penalty kick.

Four minutes after action resumed for the second half, Joel Smith put away a penalty and earned the FNB Ikey Tigers three more points.

FNB Pukke upped the ante during the second half, proving almost too much for The FNB Ikey Tigers to deal with at times. Their constant pressure and solid defending payed off six minutes from time, as Walt Steenkamp found himself on the end of a successful attacking burst to score five more points.

The final score, FNB Ikeys 6-22 FNB Pukke.

Pukke: Five-point tries: Wilmar Arnoldi, Joe Smith, Walt Steenkamp. Conversions: Rhyno Smith (2). Penalty: Rhyno Smith
Ikeys: Penalties: Joel Smith (2).

Match Report – FNB UJ vs FNB CUT

The afternoon match at the UJ Stadium in Johannesburg left the home crowd cheerful as FNB UJ comfortably beat FNB CUT 14-0 to record their third win and remain unbeaten so far in the 2016 FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International.

The opening quarter of the game was a tightly contested one as both sides were equal to the challenge.

The first 30 minutes saw both sides go at each other as FNB CUT showed character when they managed to contain the home team. It wasn’t until the home supporters slowly started to make their way into the stadium that FNB UJ started to gain the ascendancy.

A lineout won by FNB UJ saw the home side get a the first points of the afternoon, when a strong maul by the forwards saw Emmanuel Morowane score the try in the 31st minute, with Divan Nel scoring the conversion.

The home side doubled the score in the 34th minute when sustained pressure from the home side led to their second try courtesy of wing Peter John who skipped a tackle to make it a second try for FNB UJ. Fly half Divan Nel made no mistake with the conversion as FNB UJ marched on to a 14-0 halftime lead.

The second half of the game saw FNB CUT trying to attack the home team from the onset, however FNB UJ weathered the storm and kept FNB CUT at bay. The home supporters played their part as well, as they kept the stadium buzzing with the crowd singing and dancing to their team’s display after 70 minutes.

The last 10 minutes saw FNB CUT giving it a go against FNB UJ, but to no avail as the home team defended their tryline. The home side controlled the match as the full-time whistle blew, which saw FNB UJ comfortably winning against FNB CUT.

FNB UJ: Five-point tries: Emmanuel Morowane, Peter John Walters. Conversions: Divan Nel

Match Report – FNB Maties vs FNB Tuks

A hat-trick by FNB Maties winger, Duncan Saal, was enough for the Stellenbosch-based side to defeat FNB Tuks at the Danie Craven Stadium on Monday evening. FNB Maties walked away with a comfortable 29-16 win to remain on top of the log in this year’s FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International.

Despite the home side, FNB Maties, dominating possession and territory early on, it was FNB Tuks who opened the scoring with a nine-point try against the run of play. A turnover on FNB Tuks’ own tryline gave the visitors an opportunity, which they seized thanks to a lucky bounce after the ball was kicked ahead. FNb Maties, not to be outdone, responded in style with a nine-pointer of their own five minutes later.

It was Saal who would score thanks to some great foot work from his fullback.

After a period of poor handling by both sides and the scores locked at nine apiece, it was the winger who scored his second in the 31st minute after the speedster went over in the corner. It was a great team effort that was created by some impressive offloading. Saal’s two tries ensured FNB Maties led, 20-9, at the break.

FNB Tuks started the second half with some intent, carrying the ball strongly to be justly rewarded for their efforts when hooker, Corniel Els, bashed over in the corner in just the 42nd minute. Joshua Stander converted the try to make it a four-point ball game with virtually a whole half to play.

FNB Maties refused to be rattled by the visitors, who continued to dominate possession in the second half. FNB Tuks seized the opportunity to showcase their defence, holding firm against several attacks.

However, Saal completed his hat-trick just nine minutes from time, when he collected a perfectly-weighted crosskick to run in under the post for a seven-pointer. The final score would be enough for FNB Maties to hang on to their lead – completing their third straight win in the process. In contrast, FNB Tuks remained winless after three rounds, keeping them rooted at the bottom of the table.

The result means next week’s encounter between FNB Maties and FNB UJ in Johannesburg will be between two of the three unbeaten sides in the competition. FNB Maties will be hoping Saal can carry his try-finishing skills into that crucial match. That match kicks-off at 18h30.

FNB Maties:Tries: Saal (3). Conversions: Stapelberg (2)
FNB Tuks: Tries: Keanan van Wyk, Corniel Els. Conversions: Joshua Stander

Match Report – FNB Shimlas vs FNB Madibaz

FNB Shimlas beat FNB Madibaz 46-19 at Xerox Shimla Park in their first home game of the season. The defending champions put on a strong display for the home fans, running in six tries in difficult circumstances.

It took FNB Shimlas just three minutes to open their account with a great seven-point try. FNB Shimlas’ fullback, Marco Manson, ran a brilliant line to put centre, Stefan JV Rensburg, away for the unconverted try. FNB Madibaz responded immediately through their forwards, with the eighthman, Kevin Kaba, scoring a seven point try just a minute later. The missed conversion meant the scores were level after five minutes.

FNB Shimlas used the kickoff to pin FNB Madibaz back into their own 22. The home side managed to regain possession and some quick hands led to Manson contributing again with a five-point try in the eight minute of the first half.

The score meant 19 points had been scored in the opening 10 minutes of play as FNB Shimlas led, 12-7.

During the first strategy break of the match, a group of protestors occupied the pitch, momentarily bringing the game to a close. Once the protestors had left the field, players were given 15 minutes to warm up before the play would resume. The break in play seemed to bring the try-scoring fest to an end, as both teams battled to regain momentum.

FNB Madibaz wasted a nine point try due to a forward pass with the a clear run to the tryline, meaning the halftime score still read 12-7 in the hosts favour. Both sides would have used the break to regain their composure for an anticipated second half.

FNB Shimlas would make an early statement just four minutes into the half, as they created space for speedster, Mosalwa Mafuma, to score a seven-point try. A conversion moments later extended their lead to 21-7.

FNB Shimlas’ bonus point try came through Renier Botha, who crossed the try line in the 56nd minute. FNB Madibaz still showed signs of a fighting spirit when they scored a converted 5-pointer four minutes later to reduce FNB Shimlas’ lead to 14.

FNB Shimlas were not done yet, with their fifth try putting the game largely beyond doubt, with a commanding 37-14 lead with 12 minutes to play.

FNB Madibaz reduced the deficit again with another five-point try, taking the score to 37-19.

However, it would be their last contribution of the match, with FNB Shimlas prop, Chase Morrison, having the final say with his side’s sixth try to make the score 46-19. The score will go unchanged in the final minutes, with the final whistle sealing the score.

FNB Shimlas: Tries: Stefan JV Rensburg, Marco Mason, Mosolwa Mafuma, Renier Botha , Arthur Williams, Chase Morrison. Cons: Marco Mason (4).
FNB Madibaz: Tries: Kevin Kaba, Jeremy Ward, Keanu Vers. Cons: Simon Bolze