FNB Welmoed were deservingly crowned the University of the Free State's Res Rugby champions after beating their nemesis FNB Vishuis 51-17.
The clash took place on Friday, 13 September at Shimla Park in Bloemfontein and the date seemed to bring bad luck for FNB Vishuis, who have won the FNB Res Rugby title seven times previously (but fell short in this year's final against FNB Patria from the University of Pretoria) and was the defending UFS' defending 'koshuis' champ.
FNB Welmoed dominated the game from the start with structured rugby. Their pack of forwards dominated FNB Vishuis, providing quality ball possession for the backline throughout the game. Hanno Snyman, their hooker and an a FNB Shimlas player was prominent at break-down points supported by his captain and flanker Ruan Stanissis. Stanissis lead by example, with his defence and strong runs making a huge contribution to the game.
Further stand-out performances for Welmoed came from the Eybers twins, both Shimlas players, who showed their experience through the game with tactical play and rock solid defence. Replacement centre JV Coertze was, however, the star of the game; he broke the defence lines of Vishuis on a regular basis with strong darts and was all over the field looking for work.
“We play for each other, believe in each other, I am not a talking captain but rather lead by example, Stanissis told varsitycup.co.za post-match.
Welmoed's crushing final win was due reward for performing throughout the season. They made their neighbouring residences sit aup and take notice when early in the season they showed how serious they were by beating Vishuis.
The overal triumph was a lso due reward for Welmoed coach Stefan Jacobs, who is already fourteen years in the coaching business, whose experience could be seen in the performance of the team and will definitely help the team going forward.
“All of the best for the teams, we are brothers and a good hostel, it will not be easy we will not give an inch,” was the message from a confident but humble Stanissis when looking forward to future opponents in the FNB Res Rugby Championships.