The Ikeys led the charge, as the Maties and UCT-heavy Western Province side smashed the Mighty Elephants in a pre-Currie Cup warm-up match in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.
Maties loose forward Zandre Jordaan scored two tries – along with UCT forward Jody Burch, who also collected a try double – whilst Stellenbosch centre Juan de Jongh completed the scoring as WP won 72-10.
Springbok, Stormers and WP speedster Tonderai Chavhanga – a more established provincial player – also weighed in with two tries, but WP head coach Allister Coetzee was happy with the performances of the newer faces; most of whom hail from Stellenbosch and UCT.
Of course, UCT stars Tiger Bax and Martin Muller and the Maties’ Cameron Peverett, Morgan Newman, JJ Engelbrecht, Hayden Groepes and Michael De-Neuilly Rice were all involved in the 2009 Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International. (De Jongh was part of the VC-winning Maties side last year – ed.)
It proves, once again, just how important the Varsity Cup is in terms of becoming a new feeder system for South Africa’s top provincial outfits.
“The players that were in action (in Port Elizabeth) will actually form our back-up for the Currie Cup next month,” revealed Coetzee.
“We defeated the Mighty Elephants with a team that excluded all our Super 14 players, who are all likely first-choice players for us in the Currie Cup.
“But the guys performed that played against the Elephants performed well and I am happy that the younger players like PJ Vermeulen, JJ Engelbrecht, Zandre Jordaan and Jurgens Visser all put up their hands up. Morgan Newman was also in good form and so was Conrad Hoffmann.”
Tries: Conrad Hoffmann 3, Tonderai Chavhanga 2, Zandre Jordaan 2, Judy Burch 2, Juan de Jongh
Cons: Jurgen Visser 8
Pens: Jurgen Visser 2
The WP team: 15 Tiger Bax, 14 Tonderai Chavhanga, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Morgan Newman, 11 JJ Engelbrecht, 10 Jurgens Visser, 9 Conrad Hoffmann, 8 Cameron Peverett, 7 Zandre Jordaan, 6 Pieter Louw, 5 Martin Muller, 4 De Kock Steenkamp, 3 Brian Mujati, 2 Hanyani Shimange (captain), 1 Schalk Ferreira.
Replacements: 16 Michael De-Neuilly Rice, 17 Wicus Blaauw, 18 Anton Van Zyl, 19 Jody Burch, 20 Dewaldt Duvenage, 21 PJ Vermeulen, 22 Hayden Groepes.