Tuks and Kovsies start with a bang

Lucan Ian Kirchner of CPUT during the Varsity 7's Rugby match between CPUT and WSU at Pirates Rugby Club in Johannesburg on October 5, 2018 PHOTO: KEVIN SWAYER

The Varsity 7s defending champions, University of Johannesburg lost out the University of Pretoria with the Cape Peninsula University of Technology upsetting the University of the Western Cape in the first round of sevens action at the Pirates Club in Johannesburg.


The new boys CPUT made their intentions known early on as Fagme Petro touched down for an unconverted try before UWC responded with a try of their own to go into the break level.

The second half belonged to CPUT as they scored a try during the power play with UWC pushing hard to claim victory but CPUT held on to win 22-15 which proved to be the first upset of the 2018 Varsity 7s.

Madibaz v WSU

The Madibaz came out firing in the opening minutes but an unforced error prevented them from scoring during the power play. They made sure to rectify their early mistake as they scored two converted tries through Riaan Esterhuizen and Lindelwe Zungu before Snish Mpontshane added a try for WSU to cut the half time deficit to 14-5.

The Madibaz struck early on in the second half as Ivan-John du Preez ran down the left-hand touchline to score his team’s third converted try before WSU followed up with two tries including one to Chumani Mjacu. WSU inability to converted proved to be their downfall as Madibaz clinched a 21-17 win in Pool A.

UJ v UP-Tuks

The Gauteng derby between UJ and UP-Tuks was earmarked to be the clash of the day and it did not disappoint as newly signed BlitzBok Ronald Brown raced through to score the opening try for the men in orange.

UP-Tuks did well to settle into their game plan with WJ Strydom and Dewald Naudé crossed the chalk to hand their charges a 12-7 lead at half time.

It was the Stripe Generation’s half when the match resumed with Stephan Smit powering through a tackle to score before Vuyo Shongwe pulled back a try for UJ.

UP-Tuks would have the final say of the match as they made good use of UJ’s power play to score a 10-pointer and claim a hard-fought 29-12 victory.

UCT v Wits

Wits learnt a valuable lesson in their first match against UCT as the other newcomers to Varsity 7s lost 19-17 to the Capetonians despite holding a slender lead up until the final whistle.

It was the Clever Boys who drew first blood to score a converted try but their lead was short lived as UCT responded with two tries to Darian Hock and Joel Smith to go into the break with a solid 12-7 lead.

Wits shot into a five-point lead in the second half as Kwanele Ngema crossed the whitewash during a power play but their hearts were broken by UCT as Damian Rawstorne broke through the Wits defence to snatch the win from the jaws of defeat.

NWU v Maties

The Varsity Cup finalists threw everything at each other in the opening exchanges but it was Maties who dotted down first as Carlisle Nel added his name to the scoresheet.

Nel’s efforts galvanized NWU into action as they pinned their ears back to score two converted tries by Berno Engelbrecht and Hein Kritzinger to slid into the lead.

The Maties were able to score via Frederick van Zyl just before break but another missed conversion allowed NWU to hold onto their 14-10 lead.

The Maroon Machine started the second half in the same fashion as the first as they opened the scoring but a powerplay try to NWU’s Timmy Prince gave the men from Potchefstroom a 24-17 triumph in Pool C.

Kovsies v UKZN

Kovsies dominated from the get-go as they crossed the whitewash courtesy of Charl Pretorius but UKZN pulled back a try through Siphelele Buthelezi before Johannes van der Watt touched down for the Free Staters for a 12-7 lead at the break.

The try-scoring action continued in the second half with both teams scoring a brace but Kovsies scored one of theirs during a powerplay to register a 31-19 win in Pool C. – Varsity Sports