Hard-fought win secures Varsity’s future

2012-08-01 00:00

THE future of the University of KwaZulu-Natal in the Varsity Shield is secure for the next two years.

UKZN outlasted the University of North West’s Vaal campus 14-8 in the Varsity Shield promotion-relegation match at the Peter Booysen Sports Park at the weekend.

Unlucky in a number of matches, UKZN had finished last in the Varsity Shield competition this year and had to play the top-ranked team at the recent University Sport South Africa Week that were not already in the Varsity Shield tournament.

UKZN learnt much from the Varsity Shield campaign and built on that experience with new head coach Shawn van Rensburg, in finishing fourth in the KZN Premier Division, chalking up a noteworthy win over the likes of Durban Collegians.

With so much at stake in the promo-relegation match, it was reportedly a dour, tense, massively physical encounter, and Carl Meyer put UKZN ahead with a 57-metre dropped goal, followed by a regulation penalty for a 4-0 half-time lead.

NWU hit back after the change-over for Johan van Rooyen to score and convert. Meyer then banged over a penalty, before his classy offload saw Kurt Mavrodaris go under the posts for a converted try and the 14-8 final score.

UKZN defended with courage in the last 10 minutes, and

were outstanding in the set-pieces against heavier opponents.

Maritzburg Collegians had a meritorious 20-14 premie-division victory over Crusaders at Woodburn, while at the same venue, Amanzimtoti beat Newcastle 37-29 to become KZN First Division champions in

this north-south section showdown.

Toti’s win qualifies the south coast club to challenge PMB Collegians in the Premier Division promotion/relegation match, should they wish to. It has been the most unlucky of seasons for PMB Collegians, and they certainly do not deserve to be relegated.

PMB Collegians wrap up their premier-division season against Varsity College tonight at 8 pm on Woodburn’s number-two field.

Saturday’s first round of the Murray Cup sees PMB Varsity away to Vryheid. Next Wednesday, Wildebeest XV take on Wildebeest Platteland XV in a practice match at 8 pm on Woodburn two.

Other Moor Cup results: College Rovers 36 DBN Collegians 12; Harlequins 21 Varsity College 38.

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