The Steinhoff Cobras need to hit the ground running in the Steinhoff Koshuisrugby Championship in 2013.
The winners of the UCT internal league are looking to build on their leaugue win over bitter rivals the Steinhoff Nadoes as they enter into the upcoming Koshuisrugby championship.
Former Western Province Vodacom Cup-winning captain Nick Fenton-Wells was one of the founding members of the Steinhoff Cobras in 2006, and former FNB UCT flanker Zandy Macdonald has also donned the purple of the Cobras.
With these names as former players there is definitely a sense of prestige that surrounds the Cobras.
Captain Callan Artus told varsitycup.co.za: “We used to be exclusively Bishops boys but in the past couple of years we have started to open the side up to other people that are keen to play rugby.”
This year the Cobras have their eyes firmly set on going all the way.
“This season we are going in prepared, with a proper squad and a training schedule so we have a very good shot at winning it,” Artus said.
These preparations have been halted due to the fact that the university is still on their summer holiday, but they plan to get the ball rolling as soon as possible.
They have a bit of time to get themselves prepared as their first Koshuisrugby match only gets under way on March, 4.
Continuity in the squad seems to be the biggest problem that Artus and his side face as players move on and it is difficult to fill the gaps that are left due to the lack of players available.
“We have lost our whole backline from last season but most of our forward pack is still there and there are a few youngsters coming through.
“The UCT student base that plays rugby is very small and with the Varsity Cup and the Young Guns this means that it is difficult to find a full squad of players,” he added.
The Cobras are playing in their second consecutive Koshuisrugby Championship which means that the captain knows what to expect.
“Last year we lost out in a tough game in Bloem where they scored three tries in the first ten minutes which sunk us,” Artus said.
In order to avoid the disappointment of last season it seems that Artus and his team are looking to enter the competition better prepared as well as with more belief.
They start their quest for the title with a fixture against Steinhoff Bastion (UJ), whom they lost to in the first round of the tournament last year, on Monday March, 4 at the UCT Rugby Fields.
By Nick Tatham