FNB Varsity Shield
Pole position will be up for grabs when the FNB Varsity Shield’s form teams collide at the CPUT Sports Stadium on Friday.
The Blues lead the log, with four wins and 17 points. FNB CPUT have claimed maximum points from their first three fixtures and trail the leaders by two.
One of those winning streaks will come to an end when the two best teams in the FNB Varsity Shield meet on Friday.
The game promises to be a clash of styles, and it will be interesting to see whether Fort Hare's forward power or FNB CPUT’s all-out attack secures an important result.
The Blues' dominant scrum has laid the platform for recent victories. Lumumba Currie’s side also boasts some powerful ball-carriers with the ability to breach the gainline. In this respect, fans should keep an eye out for centre Migcobo Bovu.
FNB CPUT should look to disrupt the rhythm of FNB UFH and play a less-structured game. The Blues have one of the best defences in the tournament – only FNB CPUT have conceded fewer tries – and they will be tougher to breach once their defence has set.
If FNB CPUT catch the Blues while they are transitioning from attack to defence, and if Feghorn-Leigh Snyders and company are allowed to work their magic, then it could be a very different ball game.
The reigning champions cruised to victory in earlier fixtures. They have yet to be challenged, especially up front, and how they respond on Friday will reveal whether they are contenders or pretenders for the 2022 title.
FNB UFH will also have an opportunity to make a big statement. With a bye scheduled for Sunday, all of their energy and focus will be invested in their showdown with FNB CPUT.
A win will consolidate their position at the top of the log, and mark them as the team to beat.
FNB CPUT vs FNB UFH BLUES (Friday, 17:00, CPUT Sports Stadium, SuperSport channel 207) FNB CPUT – 15 Caine Stadler, 14 Christopher Andrews, 13 Iwaan Bloys, 12 Philasande Ngcobo, 11 Keenan Williams, 10 Feghon-Leigh Snyders, 9 Hugan Engelbrecht, 8 Eely Pieters, 7 Ché Klaasen, 6 Keanan Solomons, 5 Moegamat Toffar, 4 Joshua Paris, 3 Matthew Coenraad, 2 Siyasanga Ngubelanga (c), 1 Jacques-Lynn Josephus. Subs: 16 Duke Shasha, 17 Onika Mgijima, 18 Masivuye Mafenyana, 19 Lungelo Kubheka, 20 Roland van der Heever, 21 Duran Alexander, 22 Keano Cookson, 23 Darren Alexander.
FNB UFH Blues – 15 Apiwe Sidloyi, 14 Mziyabulela Bathu, 13 Ryan Maree, 12 Migcobo Bovu, 11 Lilitha Mdladlana, 10 Keith Chiwara, 9 Lwazi Madiba, 8 Ayabulela Xhosana, 7 Rodney Chikamhi, 6 Lukhanyiso Tosholwana, 5 Walter Moyo, 4 Cinga Nqotyana, 3 Sibabalo Mnkani, 2 Kamvelihle Fatyela (c), 1 Edwin Nxumalo. Subs: 16 Langalethu Susela, 17 Bulela Magopeni, 18 Mbasa Sonkosi, 19 Zimi Ngetu, 20 Avuzwa Noko, 21 Merlin du Plessis, 22 Liyema Tyali, 23 Senanelo Ndlazi.