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Tuks want to remain unbeaten

With the 2024 FNB Varsity Shield reaching the halfway mark, top-of-the-table FNB UP-Tuks are gunning for the title and finishing the season without a loss.  

 


They were relegated to the Shield competition after they finished bottom of the log in the 2023 FNB Varsity Cup competition and now want to make their way back.  

 

Senior player Tharquinn Manuel says they aim to make it seven out of seven. 

 

“We are happy as a team to have made it four out of four now, it hasn’t been an easy journey and the aim is to make it seven out of seven but we need to take each game as it comes.  

 

“I wouldn’t say the season is wrapped, we had goals set for ourselves and we have been ticking those boxes quite well we have more to go. I believe the plan for this campaign has been well executed.” 

 

Tuks leads the numbers board with 29 tries scored while conceding only six. Their forwards have played an integral in their try-scoring department with vice-captain Ethan Burger leading the chart with four tries.  

 

Manuel applauds the balance between their backline and forwards. 

 

“We have a strong pack of forwards, but the backline is just as strong. The brilliant thing about our team is the balance between the forwards and the backs.  

 

“Varsity Shield isn’t an easy tournament to play in. I’ve seen massive teams showing big character against us, like playing WSU down in East London, it wasn’t an easy game.”  

 

The five-time Varsity Cup champions travel to play FNB UKZN at home on Friday 22 March, before hosting neighbours FNB TUT in the Tshwane derby with their season concluding with the fixture against FNB Madibaz, also at home.  

 

“UKZN is a quality side but we have done our preparations and I believe our action will show on the field, we are not a team that talks too much we prefer to do our thing on the pitch. We still have Tshwane derby and Madibaz coming up, we are process-driven doing the small things and on game day our actions will speak for us,” says Manuel. 

 

 

by Lehlogonolo Ditshego 

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