FNB Varsity Cup
VarsityCup.co.za selects the standout players from Monday's matches.
CLYDE LEWIS (FNB UP-TUKS)
The versatile halfback continues to deliver for the reigning champions, who claimed a 39-24 bonus-point win over FNB Wits on Monday. Lewis scored a point-of-origin try in the first half. The game was still in the balance in the second stanza, before Lewis stepped up to kick two penalties that put the result beyond doubt.
CHRIS VERMAAK (FNB NWU EAGLES)
While the Eagles have blown hot and cold this season, their openside flank Chris Vermaak has made a consistent impact at the breakdowns and collisions. Vermaak was one of the star performers in the Eagles’ 61-26 bonus-point win against the FNB Madibaz, and scored two of the hosts’ eight tries.
SULEIMAN HARTZENBERG (FNB UCT IKEYS)
The FNB Maties looked to be in control of the big Cape derby until the FNB UCT Ikeys fired late to complete an incredible comeback victory. Hartzenberg set sail from inside his own half and finished a try which – with the conversion – moved the hosts into an eight-point lead. Hartzenberg’s acceleration and speed were evident again at the death when he raced away from defenders to score a second try and give the Ikey Tigers a 44-27 win. The outside centre beat four defenders and gained 180m over the course of the game.
ADRIAAN VAN DER BANK (FNB MATIES)
FNB Maties dominated for much of the first half against their arch-rivals. Van der Bank provided the spark for the visitors when he took an outside gap and then beat the defenders to the tryline. In cold and windy conditions, the flyhalf kicked brilliantly out of hand and managed the game well. Ultimately, it was not enough to prevent a defeat to the Ikey Tigers.
MATTHEW SEKELE (FNB CUT IXIAS)
The Ixias fought back from 28-0 down to finish within six points of FNB UWC in Cape Town. While that effort wasn’t enough to earn them a victory, it did secure them two bonus points, which are crucial in the context of the relegation battle. Lock Sekele was hugely influential for the Ixias during their fightback, gaining 43m with ball in hand and scoring two tries.
Photos: Catherine Kotze/Barco Greeff/Zaahid Appoles/Nasief Manie/Asem Engage