Today’s traditional Ikeys vs Maties intervarsity sees a salivating clash of the big boys as Os Hamman takes on Ollie Kebble up front.
Their fortunes have differed this season, but a game between Cape rivals UCT and Maties always comes with a dash of passion, guts and good head to head battles like the Hamman vs Kebble one.
The Ikeys are yet to record their first victory this season, so they will be looking for some inspiration when they welcome the log-leading Maties who have won all four of their matches thus far.
Ikeys coach Kevin Foote admitted that his team have been frustrated by a series of close losses, but added that they are looking forward to the challenge that Maties will present.
“It has been a bit frustrating so far this season as we have been close, but just haven’t been able to finish it off. Maties have created a good winning culture, playing them is always a massive challenge and the guys know that it is a huge honour to play in this match,” he said.
Maties coach Chris Rossouw said that he felt the Ikeys have been very unlucky in their games so far and pointed out that they have collected quite a few losing bonus points.
“The Ikeys have had a tough season, but they are much better than the results suggest,” he said. “They are a very proud side and will definitively be a big challenge for our side.”
“The Ikeys have a very balanced side, and can shift the ball across the park when they find their rhythm,” he added.
In the other televised game on Monday, Shimlas will be desperate to bounce back from their run of three consecutive defeats when they face Pukke in Bloemfontein.
The Free State side went down to NMMU last week to add to home defeats to Maties and Tuks, so they will be desperate to get their campaign back on track against a Pukke side that will be high on confidence following their tense victory over UCT in Potch.
In Pretoria, Tuks will be out to restore their dented pride against newcomers Wits, after their last-minute defeat to Maties last week. The defending champions find themselves in fourth position on the log after that heartbreaking loss, but should bank and easy five log points off Wits, who are struggling to find their feet in their debut season.
The Madibaz’s impressive home form will be put to the test when they host a rampant UJ who have not lost since their defeat to Maties in Stellenbosch in Round One.
The Eastern Cape side showed plenty of fighting spirit to overhaul Shimlas in the late stages of their clash last week, and they will have their hands full once more when they take on a UJ outfit that has built up some impressive momentum with three consecutive bonus-point wins.
Varsity Cup fixtures and team line-ups – Monday, March 4
UCT v Maties, UCT Rugby Fields – 4.45pm (Live TV)
UCT: 15 Ross Jones-Davies, 14 Dylan Sage, 13 David Ambunya, 12 Liam Bax, 11 Lihleli Xoli, 10 Dillyn Leyds, 9 Liam Slatem (captain), 8 Bradley Bosman, 7 Ntsolo Setlaba, 6 Derek Asbun, 5 James Kilroe, 4 Kyle Kriel, 3 Shane Meier, 2 Michael Willemse, 1 Oliver Kebble.
Bench: 16 Neil Rautenbach, 17 Sti Sithole, 18 Johannes de Klerk, 19 Jason Klaasen, 20 Rick Schroeder, 21 Richard Stewart, 22 Paul Cohen, 23 Digby Webb.
Maties: 15 Craig Barry, 14 Clearance Khumalo, 13 Mark Hodgkiss, 12 Ryan Nell, 11 Dean Hammond, 10 Dean Grant, 9 James Alexander, 8 Helmut Lehmann (captain), 7 Lungelo Chonco, 6 Beyers de Villers, 5 Reniel Hugo, 4 Jan de Klerk, 3 Os Hamman, 2 Neethling Gericke, 1 Alister Vermaak.
Bench: 16 Charl de Villiers, 17 Hein van der Merwe, 18 Jurgen Streicher, 19 Jurie van Vuuren, 20 Andries Truter, 21 JH Potgieter, 22 JP Lewis, 23 Brendan Pitzer.
Referee: Marius van der Westhuizen
Shimlas v Pukke, Shimla Park – 7pm (Live on TV)
Shimlas: 15 Nico Scheepers, 14 Maphutha Dolo, 13 Robbie van Schalkwyk, 12 Stephan van der Merwe, 11 Divandre Strydom, 10 Pieter-Steyn de Wet, 9 Renier Botha, 8 Erik le Roux, 7 Teboho Mohoje (captain), 6 Henco Venter, 5 JC Astle, 4 Fanie van der Walt, 3 Carl van Heerden, 2 Elandre Hugget, 1 Schalk van der Merwe.
Bench: 16 JC van Wyk, 17 Charles Marais, 18 Lebo Zietsman, 19 Freddie Ngoza, 20 Hlanlha Hlongwane, 21 Sethu Tom, 22 Francois du Toit, 23 Luan de Bruin.
Pukke: 15 Hoffman Maritz, 14 SW Oosthuizen, 13 Sylvian Mahuza, 12 Hennie Skorbinski, 11 Luther Obi, 10 Gerhard Nortier, 9 Jaco Grobler, 8 SJ Niemand, 7 Luvuyiso Lusaseni, 6 Phillip de Wet, 5 Victor Kruger (captain), 4 Danie Jordaan, 3 Herman Basson, 2 JC Oberholzer, 1 Martin Dreyer.
Bench: 16 Marius Fourie, 17 Arno Ebersohn, 18 Molotsi Bouwer, 19 HP Swart, 20 Tiaan Dorfling, 21 Justin Botha, 22 Rowayne Beukman, 23 Mashudu Mafela.
Referee: Jaco van Heerden
Tuks v Wits, Tuks Rugby Stadium – 7pm
Tuks: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Vainon Willis, 13 William Small-Smith, 12 Handre Pollard, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Willie du Plessis, 9 Danie Faasen, 8 Jono Ross (captain), 7 Jacques du Plessis, 6 Shaun Adendorff, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Paul Willemse, 3 Basil Short, 2 Mbongeni Mbonambi, 1 Juan Schoeman.
Bench: 16 Jaco Visagie, 17 Andrew Beerwinkel, 18 Schalk Van Heerden, 19 Wesley Kotze, 20 Emile Temperman, 21 Riaan Britz, 22 Piet Lindeque, 23 Stephan Pretorius.
Wits: 15 Riaan Arends, 14 Jeremiah Latana, 13 Kayde Fisher, 12 Jared Meyer, 11 Jacques Erasmus, 10 Kyle Peyper, 9 Mathew Torrance, 8 Jason Fraser, 7 Carel Greef, 6 Juan-Pierre Jonck, 5 Charles Baggot, 4 Devin Montgomery (captain), 3 Phakamilu Zuma, 2 Katlego Kgame, 1 Hannes Ludik.
Bench: 16 Rory Anderson, 17 Thato Mavundla, 18 Peter van Biljon, 19 Shai Korb, 20 Joshua Durbach, 21 Greg Blom, 22 Michael Sephton-Poultney, 23 Ferdinand Kelly.
Referee: Jaco Kotze
NMMU v UJ, NMMU Stadium – 7pm
NMMU: 15 Jarred Buys, 14 Gerhardus Smith, 13 Hermanus van Lill, 12 Xolani Mnisi, 11 Logan Basson, 10 Justin Van Staden, 9 Dwayne Kelly, 8 Timothy Agaba, 7 Stefan Willemse, 6 Albertus de Swardt, 5 Louis Fourie, 4 Schalk Oelofse, 3 Lizo Gqoboka, 2 Martin Ferreira, 1 Roy Godfrey (captain).
Bench: 16 Francois Coetzer, 17 Gareth Hartley, 18 Ferdinand Gerber, 19 Mzwanale Zito, 20 Lesley-Dean Luiters, 21 Lonwabo Ntleki, 22 Yamkela Ngam, 23 Dexter Fahey.
UJ: 15 Kobus De Kock, 14 JR Esterhuizen, 13 Bradley Moolman, 12 Luan Steenkamp, 11 Chrysander Botha, 10 Divan van Zyl, 9 Vian van der Watt, 8 RJ Liebenberg, 7 Justin Wheeler (captain), 6 Kobus Porter, 5 David Antonites, 4 Shane Kirkwood, 3 Ewald Van Der Westhuizen, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Wiseman Kamanga.
Bench: 16 AJ le Roux, 17 Wessel du Rand, 18 Johan van der Hoogt, 19 Thilip Marole, 20 Jacques Pretorius, 21 Adriaan Vermeulen, 22 PJ Walters, 23 Njabulo Mkize.
Referee: Gerrie de Bruin
Varsity Shield fixtures – Monday, March 4
UWC v CUT, UWC Sport Stadium – 7pm
UKZN v TUT, Peter Booysen Sports Park – 7pm