UCT came from behind to see off a strong Hamilton's team by 19:15 on their home turf and finish the first half of the season in second spot – trailling Maties by only three points.
The Hammies supporters would have been happy with the way their team controlled the game in the opening stages as the Greenpoint side were up 12:3 after 30 minutes.
Then ever dangerous Richard Steward finished off a beautifully worked try to close the gap to 8:12 just before the half.
The momentum had shifted and it was front ranker Digby Webb who crashed over the whitewash for a rare five pointer shortly after the half to claim the lead for the first time 13:12.
The intensity of the match was testament to the quality and determination of both teams who did not give an inch.
The teams traded penalties and UCT kicker Ross Jones Davies made the most of the territorial advantage to eventually pull ahead 19:15 and help claim a famous and hard fough victory.
The Ikeys bid farewell to young Bath Rugby scrumhalf Chris Cook who had a great time at the club and is heading back to the UK following a short exchange stint.
A great start for the new coaching team under Hanyani Shimange and his charges and fantastic to see the Ikeys win the close games.
The team has done well to turn the season around following the disappointing Varsity Cup and certainly deserve the mid year break – which of course is extended compared to other clubs in the league, to give the players time for exams.
The UCT Eagles played valiantly but lost in what was their first defeat of the season.
Ikey Tigers scorers:
Richard Steward, Digby Webb
Kicks: Jones Davies 3pens
Ikey Tigers team vs Hamilton RFC
1.Wes Chetty 2. Derek Asbun, 3. Digby Webb, 4. James Kilroe, 5. Shaun Macdonald, 6. Jason Klaasen 7. Kyle Kriel 8. Vince Jobbo 9. Christopher Cook 10. Ross Jones Davies 11. Lihleli Xoli 12. Tiger Bax 13. , 14.Richard Steward 15. Dylan Sage
Reserves: 16. Michael Kennedy 17. Deacon Chowles 18. Jade Kriel, 19. Sithe Mtwa 20 Christopher Cook 21. Luke Bax 22. Kyle Lombart