MATCHDAY WRAP: Tuks snatch dramatic win; Ikeys lift Chester trophy after try-fest

FNB Varsity Cup

Fullback Zander du Plessis kicked an 83rd-minute penalty goal to give FNB UP-Tuks a 42-39 win against FNB UFS Shimlas at Loftus Versfeld on Monday, while there were also Round 7 victories for FNB Maties and FNB UCT.

FNB MATIES 44 (30) FNB MADIBAZ 14 (0)

FNB Maties scored six tries to beat Gqeberha-based FNB Madibaz, writes Dan Lombard.

It was rather unconvincing, considering the stellar heights the five-time FNB Varsity Cup champions usually operate at, but a win is a win and it saw them finish the day in third place on the log.

The usually composed and clinical FNB Maties have not been at their best throughout the 2021 campaign and it showed against the winless FNB Madibaz, who frustrated the Maroon Machine with a hardy defensive line.

However, one cannot win with defence alone and the cracks appeared in the ninth minute when FNB Maties flank Thys Kitshoff powered over for the opening try.

His efforts were followed by five-pointers to fullback Juan Mostert and passionate captain and outside centre David Brits, before Mostert bagged his brace with a fantastic point-of-origin try after the FNB Madibaz failed to find touch with time up in the first half.

Flyhalf Adriaan van der Bank kicked all four conversions to add to a 30-0 lead at the break, while the FNB Madibaz were left wondering why their intent had yet to be rewarded. 

The second half was much of the same as the men from Stellenbosch relied on the mistakes of their opposition as opposed to creating anything of real value.

Brits secured his brace within five minutes, before another hiatus of points being scored caused the match to lose the remaining allure that was brimming before kick-off.

Flank Gift Dlamini dotted down for a point-of-origin try in the 66th minute to cap off a strong showing, but Van der Bank could only convert Brits' try. 

It certainly didn't help FNB Maties' cause that they were served two yellow cards in the final 20 minutes to hooker JJ Kotze and replacement lock James Combrinck.

The numerical advantage was seized by the FNB Madibaz as replacement utility backs Khakalethu Bophi (point of origin) and Likhona Dywili scored tries, with Tiaan Schutte adding a conversion.

FNB Player That Rocks: Juan Mostert (FNB Maties)

FNB Maties – Tries: Thys Kitshoff, Juan Mostert (1x5, 1x7), David Brits (2), Gift Dlamini (1x7). Conversions: Adriaan van der Bank (5).
FNB Madibaz – Tries: Khakalethu Bophi (1x7), Likhona Dywili. Conversion: Tiaan Schutte.

FNB UCT IKEYS 58 (31) FNB UWC 55 (22)

FNB UCT edged FNB UWC in a 14-try thriller to become the first holders of the Chester Williams Memorial Trophy, writes Bronwen Bain.

This was the first Udubs-Ikeys Cape derby to be played in honour of the former Springbok wing, who coached FNB UWC to their two FNB Varsity Shield titles, the second of which earned them promotion to the FNB Varsity Cup.

It looked like FNB UWC might mark the occasion with an upset win when they led 15-3 after 13 minutes, and then fought back well late in the game to get to within three points of FNB UCT. But the log-leading Ikeys Tigers, who outscored their opponents by eight tries to six, were able to hang on for the win.

FNB UWC made a great start to this match, with scrumhalf Branden de Kock slotting two penalties before winger Lundi Msenge scored a point-of-origin try in the left corner after chasing down a kick.

FNB UCT turned to their forward pack to get them into the game, with hooker Devon Arendse and prop Robert Hunt both forcing their way over the whitewash. Hunt’s try came after FNB UWC flank Godfrey Muzanargwo had been sent to the sin bin.

Winger Rethabile Louw and scrumhalf Kyle Bowman then ran in two point-of-origin tries to give the Ikey Tigers a 31-15 lead.

But FNB UCT flyhalf James Tedder was yellow-carded and FNB UWC capitalised immediately through No 8 Tinotenda Mavasere.

The tries continued to flow in the second half, with Bowman completing his hat-trick and centres Le Roux Malan and Evardi Boshoff also dotting down.

Msenge atoned for his yellow card early in the second half by scoring another point-of-origin try for FNB UWC, before Mavasere scored his second, also a seven-pointer.

With a minute remaining, FNB UWC centre André Manuel ran in yet another seven-point try and the conversion made it a three-point game. But FNB UCT were able to wind down the clock and retain their unbeaten record in this year’s FNB Varsity Cup.

FNB Player That Rocks: Evardi Boshoff (FNB UCT Ikeys)

FNB UCT Ikeys – Tries: Devon Arendse, Robert Hunt, Rethabile Louw (1x7), Kyle Bowman (1x7, 2x5), Le Roux Malan, Evardi Boshoff. Conversions: James Tedder (5). Penalties: Tedder (2).
FNB UWC – Tries: Lungi Msenge (2x7), Tinotenda Mavasere (1x5, 1x7), penalty try, André Manuel (1x7). Conversions: Branden de Kock (3). Penalties: De Kock (3).

FNB UFS SHIMLAS 39 (16) FNB UP-TUKS 42 (27)

FNB UP-Tuks fullback Zander du Plessis held his nerve to kick a match-winning penalty goal in the 83rd-minute of their clash against FNB UFS Shimlas, writes Simon Borchardt.

Du Plessis had missed a penalty from straight in front late in the game, but made no mistake when given the opportunity to make amends in stoppage time.

It gave FNB UP-Tuks a somewhat fortunate win against an FNB UFS Shimlas team that fought back from 20-0 down after 29 minutes to take a 39-32 lead after 64 minutes.

Shimlas centre Danco Burger and lock Pierre Uys both grabbed a double, while regular captain Rewan Kruger also scored in an impressive performance off the bench.

However, FNB UP-Tuks levelled the scores at 39-39 when replacement prop Etienne Janeke went over for his second try of the night and Du Plessis added the conversion.

FNB UFS Shimlas replacement hooker William Moffat was yellow-carded with four minutes to go, but his team continued to attack from inside their half well after the full-time hooter. Unfortunately for them, they conceded a breakdown penalty, for which Du Plessis made them pay.

FNB UP-Tuks had looked set for a comfortable win after taking a 20-point lead, with prop Dewald Donald and centre Louritz van der Schyff crossing for tries, and Du Plessis adding two conversions to his two earlier penalties.

But Burger’s first try – a seven-pointer – was followed by Uys’ first just before half-time, and when Burger scored again early in the second half it set up a thrilling battle that would be decided in dramatic fashion.

FNB Player That Rocks: Rewan Kruger (FNB UFS Shimlas)

FNB UFS Shimlas – Tries: Danco Burger (1x7, 1x5), Pierre Uys (1x5, 1x7), Rewan Kruger. Conversions: JP Duvenage (5).
FNB UP-Tuks – Tries: Dewald Donald, Louritz van der Schyff, Eduan Lubbe, Etienne Janeke (2). Conversions: Zander du Plessis (4). Penalties: Du Plessis (3).

2021 FNB Varsity Cup teams (Round 7)

The remaining two matches of Round 7 – FNB UJ vs FNB Wits and FNB CUT Ixias vs FNB NWU Eagles – will take place on Tuesday, 25 May, due to Covid-19 return-to-play protocols.

All 10 FNB Varsity Cup teams will be in action on Thursday with five Round 8 matches at the University of Pretoria:

  • FNB Wits vs FNB UFS Shimlas (14:00, Tuks B-Field, DStv Now channel 245)
  • FNB Maties vs FNB UJ (15:00, Tuks Stadium, SuperSport Rugby channel 211)
  • FNB Madibaz vs FNB UP-Tuks (16:00, Tuks B-Field, DStv Now channel 245)
  • FNB UWC vs FNB CUT Ixias (17:00, Tuks Stadium, SuperSport Rugby channel 211)
  • FNB NWU Eagles vs FNB UCT Ikeys (19:00, Tuks Stadium, SuperSport Rugby channel 211)

FNB Varsity Cup fixtures and logs

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