Tuks and Pukke break free

Both Tuks and Pukke put some daylight between themselves and the chasing pack with good away wins in Round Four of the Varsity Cup.

Defending champions Tuks continued their unbeaten season with a tough 26-16 victory over UCT in extremely windy conditions on the Green Mile in Cape Town, whilst Pukke were too strong for NMMU, who went down 52-16 in Port Elizabeth.

The other two teams to notch wins on Monday night Shimlas and Maties – round off the top four thanks to home wins over UJ and Wits, respectively.

Tuks secured what could prove to be a crucial bonus point in the final stages of their win in Cape Town to sneak a one-point lead over Pukke on the log.

It was the Ikeys’ second defeat at home this season, to go with away wins against Maties and the Madibaz in the last two weeks, and leaves them in fifth spot on the log, just ahead of NMMU on points’ difference.

The heavy defeat to Pukke was NMMU’s second consecutive defeat at home, where they had not previously lost since 2012, and leaves them with plenty of work to do with three away games to play before the semifinals.

In Bloemfontein, the Shimlas scored five tries in the first half to take the game away from UJ before cruising to a comfortable 52-16 victory which saw them leap up to third place on the log, four points behind Pukke.

UJ simply had no response for the fluid Free State side, and find themselves down in seventh position with just one win from their four matches this season.

Maties were forced to come from behind to earn a hard-fought 18-15 win against Wits, who earned their first log points of the season despite narrowly missing out on their first-ever Varsity Cup win.

Wits were leading heading into the final half-hour, but conceded two tries when down to 14 men as Maties snuck home to move up to fourth place on the log – Wits nearly stole a dramatic draw through an unconverted try on full-time.

In the U20 Young Guns tournament, Shimlas got their campaign up and running with a resounding 122-0 victory over an inept Wits in Bloemfontein, whilst UJ made it two wins from two games with a 40-29 win against Ikeys in Cape Town.

And in the Shield Fort Hare flyhalf Oliver Zono scored minutes from time to clinch a dramatic 31-29 victory over defending champions CUT in Bloemfontein. It was the Ixias’ first defeat in the competition since 2012 and sees Fort Hare jump from last place up to third position, four points adrift of UKZN, who beat TUT 32-8 in Pietermaritzburg.

The scorers:

Tuks 26-16 UCT

For UCT:

Tries: Slatem, Jones

Cons: Grant 2

For Tuks:

Tries: J Schoeman, Gelant, Matthews, Van Wyk

Cons: T Schoeman 2

Yellow card: Leneve Damens (Repeated infringements, 75 mins)


Maties 18-15 Wits

For Maties:

Tries: Kirsten, De Klerk, Du Preez

Con: Du Preez

For Wits:

Tries: Fraser, Davids, Nel


Shimlas 52-16 UJ

For Shimlas:

Tries: Mohoje, Dolo, Tom, Engelbrecht 2, Kruger, Strydom

Cons: Prinsloo 5

Pen: Prinsloo

For UJ:

Tries: Pretorius, Vorster

Cons: Schmidt 2

Yellow cards: Michael Haznar (Foul play, 58 mins) Markus Odendaal (Tip tackle, 61 mins)


NMMU 16-52 Pukke


Tries: Bernardt 2

Cons: Hauptfleisch 2

For Pukke:

Tries: Van der Merwe, Mahuza 2, Marais, Robbertse, Language, Obi

Cons: Engelbrecht 5

DG: Welthagen

Yellow cards: Lhlanhla Ngcamu (NWU-Pukke, 50), Hoffman Maritz (NWU-Pukke, 63)

VC table