Varsity Cup Match Reports

The Ikeys faced second-placed CUT and gave a near-perfect performance and confirmed their status as Varsity Cup title favourites by thrashing FNB CUT. This top-of-the-log clash between the only two unbeaten teams in the competition was one-way traffic from start to finish as the Ikey Tigers scored 12 tries, including a hat-trick by fullback Athi Gazi.

Scrumhalf William Rose opened the scoring for FNB UCT with an early try, before point-of-origin tries from Gazi and winger Rethabile Louw made it 21-0. In typical 2021 FNB Varsity Cup fashion, hooker Devon Arendse got his name on the scoresheet, before centre Le Roux Malan scored UCT’s bonus-point try. Flank Neil Otto went over on the stroke of half-time to make it 42-0.

CUT’s woes continued in the second half when Gazi’s second try was followed by a yellow card to Brendon Fortuin. Gazi scored his hat-trick try in the lock’s absence. The Ikeys were then reduced to 13 men when replacement wing Rihaz Fredericks was red-carded for a dangerous tackle and Louw was yellow-carded shortly after for another high shot.

The Ixias used their forwards to get their only try of the game from an excellent rolling maul, but the 13-man Ikey Tigers then scored twice, through replacement hooker Josh van Vuuren and winger Liam Kloosman. Louw completed the rout with a last-minute, seven-point try.

FNB Player That Rocks: Le Roux Malan (FNB UCT)
FNB UCT Ikeys – Tries: William Rose, Athi Gazi (1×7, 2×5), Rethabile Louw (2×7), Devon Arendse, Le Roux Malan, Neil Otto, Gary Porter, Josh van Vuuren, Liam Kloosman. Conversions: James Tedder (5).
FNB CUT Ixias – Try: Hans Terblanche.

Catch the highlights from this game below.

The Ikeys started the second bubble of the Varsity Cup against Shimlas and remained unbeaten as they scored eight tries. The Ikeys were already dominating the game and scoreboard before Shimlas were red-carded twice although they returned to their full complement after two sets of 15 minutes in accordance with FNB Varsity Cup law variations.

Ikeys were ruthless throughout the first half as they attacked Shimlas’ fringe defence at will but it was the men from Bloemfontein who scored first as silky hands across the backline put fullback Cham Zondeki over in the corner. This proved to be the last time they would threaten the scoreboard as FNB UCT switched gears and crossed the chalk on four occasions. Lock Connor Evans and fullback Athi Gazi bagged five-pointers while wing Rethabile Louw finished two brilliant point-of-origin tries which, along with flyhalf James Tedder’s two conversions and a penalty, inflated the score to 31-5 at the break.

The second half started off with a bang as Gazi crossed for his brace in a spectacular point-of-origin try. Shimlas showed a lor of character trying to halt the UCT juggernaut but the non-stop phases of attack by the Ikeys resulted in further three tries courtesy of outside centre Evardi Boshoff, replacement flyhalf David Hayes and No 8 Christian Stehlik.

FNB Player That Rocks: Neil Otto (FNB UCT Ikeys)
FNB UFS Shimlas – Try: Cham Zondeki.
FNB UCT Ikeys – Tries: Connor Evans, Rethabile Louw (2×7), Athi Gazi (1×5, 1×7), Evardi Boshoff, David Hayes, Christian Stehlik. Conversions: James Tedder (2), Michael Brink (3). Penalty: Tedder.

FNB UCT IKEYS 39 (21) FNB UJ 34 (19)
The Ikeys had to fight hard for this victory against a winless FNB UJ in hot conditions in Pretoria. The UJ forwards were up for the game and made life difficult for the Ikeys.

The Ikeys scored as early as the third minute as flyhalf James Tedder’s delayed pass allowed flanker Taariq Kruger to run a perfect line and cross untouched for a point-of-origin try. Fullback Athi Gazi then did extremely well to pin his ears back to score the Ikeys second in the corner 14 minutes later as the to put them into a 12-0 lead.

FNB UJ fought back to score a point-of-origin try. The scoreboard changed quickly as both teams scored, the Ikey Tigers capitalised off a strong lineout drive with hooker Josh van Vuuren dotting down a converted try, before quick thinking by FNB UJ’s backs allowed fullback Boldwin Hansen to score a converted try. UJ cut the deficit to three points just before the breakthrough a penalty goal as UCT went into half time with a narrow 21-19 lead.

The second half was much the same as both teams kept the scoreboard ticking over with FNB UJ taking the lead with a penalty before the Ikeys ran in another point-of-origin try that started from a strong scrum, through several hands before outside centre Le Roux Malan exploited a gap to score their bonus-point try. The UJ No 8 then scored a brace off powerful running and strong leg drives close to the line.

The Ikeys talisman James Tedder ensured that the Ikey Tigers remained in the lead with two late penalty goals and left the first bio-bubble unbeaten after three rounds. Byron Bowes at lock had a storming game for the Ikeys.

FNB Player that Rocks: Byron Bowes (FNB UCT Ikeys)
FNB UCT Ikeys – Tries: Taariq Kruger (1×7), Athi Gazi, Josh van Vuuren, Le Roux Malan (1×7). Conversions: James Tedder (3). Penalties: Tedder (3).
FNB UJ – Tries: Nkondlo Radebe (1×7), Boldwin Hansen, Franco Schutte (2). Conversions: Jurich Claasens (3). Penalties: Claasens (2).

FNB WITS 22 (8) FNB UCT IKEYS 40 (26)
Flyhalf James Tedder produced another Player That Rocks performance as UCT outplayed FNB Wits.

FNB Wits dazzled in the opening minutes and were rewarded for their prowess as hooker Justin Brandon crossed the chalk for an unconverted try before play was suspended for impending lightning.

After the enforced break the Ikey’s came back focused bouncing back with two tries to hooker Devon Arendse, who showed great anticipation and determination, while Tedder landed four penalties and two conversions to hand FNB UCT a 26-8 lead at the break.

The second half started slowly as both teams failed to bother the scoreboard until Wits prop Ebot Buma broke the deadlock with a converted try. The Ikeys Tigers’ then resumed control of the game as replacement hooker Josh van Vuuren pulled back a converted try. The Wits replacement hooker mimicked his Ikey counterpart, scoring a try for the “Clever Boys”.

FNB Wits’ elation was short-lived, though, as young Ikey Tigers lock Connor Evans plucked the ball out of the air at the restart to score a sensational try, claiming the bonus point in the process.
Tedder’s boot was on hand for FNB UCT as he nailed eight shots at goal in total.

FNB Player that Rocks: James Tedder (FNB UCT Ikeys)
FNB Wits – Tries: Justin Brandon, Ebot Buma, Morné Brandon. Conversions: Kurt Webster (2). Penalty: Webster.
FNB UCT Ikeys – Tries: Devon Arendse (2), Josh van Vuuren, Connor Evans. Conversions: James Tedder (4). Penalties: Tedder (4).

FNB UCT Ikeys claimed their first win against their arch-rivals in six matches and ended FNB Maties’ 25-match winning streak.

In a game plagued by yellow cards, flyhalf James Tedder got FNB UCT Ikeys off to an emphatic start when his cross-kick was chased down by scrumhalf-turned-wing Liam Kloosman, who scored in the corner. Tedder missed the conversion but added a penalty to make it 8-0.

Ikeys’ elation was short-lived, though, as lock Matthew Grobler and prop Robert Hunt were yellow-carded in quick succession. FNB Maties took full advantage when captain and centre David Brits scored a converted try, but Tedder slotted a penalty while his side was down to 13 men to make it 11-7.

On the stroke of half-time, lock Simon Miller was handed FNB Maties’ first yellow card and FNB UCT Ikeys hooker Devon Arendse scored from a lineout driving maul.

After FNB UCT Ikeys winger Rethabile Louw and FNB Maties flank Matthys Kitshoff had received the fourth and fifth yellow cards of the night, No 8 Christian Stehlik scored from a powerful Ikeys scrum on the Maties tryline . Tedder nailed the conversion and a mammoth penalty to make it 26-13.

FNB UCT Ikeys’ fourth yellow card, for replacement hooker Josh van Vuuren, was followed by a converted try for FNB Maties flank Mitchell Carstens.

As the anxious Ikeys supporters watched FNB Maties pushed hard for a match-winning try in stoppage time, but FNB UCT Ikeys were able to hang on for a well-deserved win.

FNB Player That Rocks: James Tedder (FNB UCT)
FNB UCT – Tries: Liam Kloosman, Devon Arendse, Christian Stehlik. Conversion: James Tedder. Penalties: Tedder (3).
FNB Maties – Tries: David Brits, Mitchell Carstens. Conversions: Nevaldo Fleurs (2). Penalties: Fleurs (2).