Reluctance to give the Ikeys a home game at “Little Moscow”, as hosts of the FNB Varsity Cup final next Monday, has stirred a campaign on campus for the Maties to come and win the competition fair and square in Cape Town.
Dale Granger writes in the Cape Argus that on Monday, for the first time in 30 years, students were hanging out of the Smuts’ Residence balcony to watch UCT beat Pukke in their semi-final, before Stellenbosch scraped home against Tukkies at the Danie Craven Stadium.
But despite the Ikeys, who started the competition seeded seventh, having finished top of the log to the second placed Maties, earning the right to host the final, tournament organisers had already decided that the final would be played in Stellenbosch, because the lights at Groote Schuur are not up to standard for a televised match.
The Ikeys then had second thoughts about it this week, and decided they would prefer to play the game at Newlands.
WP Rugby managing director Rob Wagner said the union would happily open its gates to the two teams on Monday evening.
However, the organisers want the game played on campus and are sticking to the original decision that the final should be played at Stellenbosch at 6.45pm.
Nevertheless, the alternative is that the game could be at UCT on Monday afternoon, and that the TV broadcast should be delayed until later in the evening.
UCT, traditionally known as “Moscow on the hill” for their liberal leanings, are now favouring this option, and it’s giving organisers a headache, with talk radio drumming up support for the Ikeys to host the final.
“I don’t know if we were ever communists. I think we were friendly capitalists,” said former UCT, Western Province and Springbok fullback Ian McCallum.
“We’re thinking of sewing a hammer and sickle onto our jerseys and asking Cosatu to come and support us,” quipped Ikeys coach John Dobson.
“We had 7 000 supporters at our semi-final and we are confident that we could double that number on Monday if the game was played at Newlands or UCT,” he added, on a more serious note.
“In every competition throughout the world, the team that tops the log has earned the right to host the final,” said Cape rugby legend Basil Bey, throwing his support behind the campaign.
Two years ago UCT, with Villagers, Hamiltons and Tygerberg, lodged a complaint with Western Province against Stellenbosch for loading their side with Vics players to help them win the Grand Challenge.
They had to beat UCT with a bonus point to accomplish this, but the complaint was later dismissed.
Now the feeling is that Matie students, along with their team, should travel to Cape Town and win the cup fair and square.Tweet