Bloem ready for VC derby

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MORGAN PIEK

The University of the Free State Shimlas made a big statement on Monday night in the Varsity Cup when they beat the University of Johannesburg away from home.

Billed as tough round for the Free State team after UJ beat the Ixias 46-10 in the opening round, Franco Smith’s team totally shut the home side out in Johannesburg.

Shimlas crossed the white wash on three occasions while their defence prevented the side in orange from stamping their mark on the game. Conraad "Beertjie" van Vuuren, Zee Mkhabela and Tertius Kruger all score converted tries with Shimlas beating UJ 24-0.

After drawing in the first round, the side will take a lot of confidence out of the win with their big derby looming.

In Port Elizabeth, things didn’t look too rosy for the Central University of Technology Ixias after picking up their second successive loss in the tournament.

After their drubbing at the hands of UJ last week, the team preformed slightly better in their first away game when they tackled the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University Madibaz in Port Elizabeth. Skillie Bester’s boys could not take advantage of the no less than five yellow cards dished out against the Madibaz during their 34-13 loss.

Ali Mgijima and Mosego Toolo managed tries against the coastal side, in reply to their five.

Next week will be an interesting week for both the Bloemfontein teams in the competition with the looming derby.

For the first time ever these two sides will meet each other in Varsity Cup rugby, and bruising encounter is expected in the City of Roses.

While the Shimlas have experience and the ascendancy on their side, the Ixias will be no pushover on their home ground. Wounded and having a point to prove come Monday, Ixias will be fired up for the game.

Monday’s derby at the CUT Rugby Stadium kicks off at 16:45.