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As is tradition, no rugby season can kick off without the Ikey Tiger blazer and tie handover ceremony. Held in Smuts Hall, and overlooking the Green Mile, FNB Ikey Tigers, past and present, attended the event on the 4th of February to lay the platform for the 2016 rugby season
This is a key ceremony as it gives the players an idea of the importance and honour in receiving the UCT RFC Blazer and Tie. It is also a way for us to look them over, and acknowledge their achievement in making the team.
Some of the dignitaries’ present were Rob Wagner the outgoing Western Province CEO, Judge Pat Tebbutt, Doc Cecil Moss, the oldest living Springbok, and John Dobson. Dobbo gave a rousing, passionate and humorous speech which had the assembled audience enthralled. This was followed by a few words from Greg Fury and Head Coach, Hyani Shimange.
The current Ikey Tigers squad were called up individually to receive their blazer and tie from past players, some of whom are still playing the game at the highest level. Current WP and Stormers players Siya Kolisi, Dillyn Lleyds, Huw Jones, Scarra Ntubeni, Nic Groome and Nizaam Carr were present, as were the current and past Springbok sevens captains, Kyle Brown and Mpho Mbiyozo.
Older players to hand out jackets were Ex Springboks, Derek Van Den Berg, Roy and Ian McCallum, Dugald MacDonald, Lance Sherrell, Keith Andrews, and ex Western Province players, Butch Deuchar, Mikey Kirsten, John Le Roux, and prominent past UCT rugby players, Phil Kilroe, Greg Fury, Danny Palm, Barry O’Mahony, recent past Captain Levi Odendaal, and other UCT rugby players of the past. It is a testament to the passion, effort and organisational skills of John Le Roux that so many past players took part in this ceremony.
To end off the meeting the players stood arm in arm and gave voice to the Ikeys song “Warrior Poets” – written by UCT Old Boy Andy Schär. The song was designed to instil a sense of greater meaning amongst the boys and was something they could sing or listen to, to get them fired up before a game. The original version of the song can be found here or in the vido below.