It may be early days yet, and with another six rounds after this there is time to catch up, but Round Two will be the first indication of who the front runners will be in the FNB Varsity Cup, presented by Steinhoff International.
After the opening week’s close-fought encounters – in two games the teams finished within two points of each other and in another the margin was just seven – the level of intensity is expected to pick up when the country’s top eight university sides go head-to-head on Monday, February 9.
Duitser Bosman, the MD of Varsity Cup, said he will be looking for some teams to start leaving their mark on the event.
“No doubt the quality of rugby will pick up,” Bosman told varsitycup.co.za, adding: “Last week was typical of the first week of tournament and you could see all the teams still have some areas that need working on.”
Bosman felt this Monday would not just see a significant improvement lift in the intensity and quality of rugby, but the four matches would also be the first real pointers as to whom can be regarded as early title contenders.
“We will see some teams step forward, while we will also have an indication as to what work awaits for others,” Bosman added.
He felt the game of the day may well be the showdown in Bloemfontein between Free State University and their North West (Pukke) rivals.
“That could be something special,” Bosman said.
This week only two games are televised – the TUT versus UCT game in Pretoria and the encounter in Bloemfontein.
That means students supporting Nelson Mandela Métropole University versus Pretoria (Tukkies) and Stellenbosch (Maties) versus Johannesburg will have to be at the field or miss the action.
However, based on last week’s events, the atmosphere at the grounds will make it worth your while to make the trip to the stadium – as it is an exhilarating experience not to be missed.
Week Two schedule:
Monday, February 9:
TUT v UCT, TUT Stadium, Pretoria – 4.45pm (TV)
NMMU v Tuks, NMMU Stadium, Port Elizabeth – 6.45pm
Shimlas v Pukke, Shimla Park, Bloemfontein – 6.45pm (TV)
Maties v UJ, Danie Craven Stadium, AStellenbosch – 7.30pm