South African Universities vs. All Blacks 1976

Back in the days of full tours the touring team used to play against various provincial, invitational and combined teams. One such team was the Southern Universities side, and another was the South African Universities side. In light of the upcoming All Blacks match in Cape Town we thought we would look back at two of these games. One does wonder how a Combined Universities team would fare against the All Blacks of 2017!

4 August 1976: All Blacks 21; South African Universities 9.

This was a combined Universities team made up of players from all the Universities in South Africa. Three Ikeys were selected for the team, Peter Whipp, Doug Mather and Butch Deuchar. To put the score into some perspective, the Saturday following this match the All Blacks beat the Springboks 15 – 9. This game was billed as the 5th test.

The Universities side was 15 Dawie Snyman 14 Edrich Krantz 13 Peter Whipp (UCT) 12 Joggie Jansen 11 Gerrie Germishuys 10 De Wet Ras 9 Barry Wolmerans 8 Wynand Claassen 7 Eben Jansen 6 Boland Coetzee 5 Louis Moolman 4 John Williams (Capt) 3 Daan du Plessis 2 Wouter Hugo 1 Doug Mather (UCT) and the reserves were Alan “Butch” Deuchar (UCT) and Bossie Clarke.

It was indeed almost a complete Springbok team with some incumbents like Dawie Snyman, Edrich Krantz, Peter Whipp, Gerrie Germishuys, Boland Coetzee, and John Williams, some oldies like Joggie Jansen and some future Springboks like De Wet Ras, Barry Wolmerans, Wynand Claassen, Eben Jansen, Louis Moolman and Daan du Plessis. Only two players never achieved Springbok colours, Wouter Hugo and Doug Mather.

Some Commentary on the Game:

The match was played at Loftus Versveld in Pretoria and some 60 000 odd spectators including then Prime Minister John Vorster who showed up to see how the All Blacks were going to get beaten in the “fifth test”. After 12 minutes: S.A. Universities 6, All Blacks 0. Ras penalties, 29 m and 40 m. And then, the All Blacks were marching. Sid Going slotted one in from 41 m. Morgan capped with a try, a
brilliant move infield by Mitchell involving Bruce Robertson and Sutherland. Sid Going converted again. Half-time 9-6. The rest, men against boys. Great try by Johnstone. Pick-up of kick-ahead by Mitchell and a plunging run for 20 m. Smart try by Seear, too. Straight through a hole in the lineout wall.

Peter Whipp gave the crowd a rare moment of excitement with an attempt to break while well covered. No13 in the picture is Bruce Robertson and the Varsity player on the left running up in support is Wynand Claassen.