The past few weeks has seen a surge of WP Club Rugby excitement as we now see more club rugby friendlies in action, the knowledge that the league will start in April this year, action on the Women’s Rugby front, and our senior sides driving the hype with all teams now back in action.
As expected at this time of year pre-season friendlies are causing a lot of club rugby excitement and most clubs are treating these matches as preparation for the league and are already taking things quite seriously.
This past weekend saw just over fifty clubs take to the field including some with 2nd and u20 sides. As expected, a number of derbies players out and already a few tough head-to-head clashes. From a derby perspective, it’s reasonable to assume that most neighbouring matches are derbies. As derbies go Hands and Heart beat Scottsdene Central 36-5, Strand scored a 41-15 win over Maccassar, Vineyards beat Lower Paarl 24-17 and it was a close match between Franschoek and Young Peoples as Peoples scored a narrow 19-17 win.
There is now just over three weeks left to the official start of the WP Club Rugby season and clubs still have some time to play each other across the leagues. Meanwhile, we also saw some same league head to head clashes such as Tygerberg beat Kuilsriver 3-0, Hamiltons beat Brackenfell 29-5 and Uni Mil beat Villagers 45-10.
This is also the window period where we see some clubs arrange matches against clubs from our neighbouring unions Boland and SWD. These opportunities don’t come often and will certainly be limited as we head to the league start. This weekend saw Helderberg play George at Outeniqua park for some good experience winning 38-14. For a full list of results please click here
We have now concluded several sessions with our clubs across the various leagues. The engagement opportunity allowed for us to discuss the various elements of the season ahead. These sessions are particularly important to understand the complexities of fixture determination with regard to facilities and officials. One vital element discussed was the referees and all clubs have been asked to nominate up to three candidates for the WP Rugby World Rugby level one referee’s course at Newlands on 26 March 2022.
Our YTC u16 and u18 squads have been training hard as they prepare for their next big event being the Schools Rugby festival on 11 March 2022.
Our senior women’s rugby sides are back in action and have already picked up the momentum of their various successes over the past few years and are in preparation for the IPL which starts on 23 April 2022. It is evident that many of the players have been working hard behind the scenes with off-season gym programs.
Our Women’s rugby department met with our women’s rugby delegates last week and gauging by the discussions, WP Women’s rugby looks as exciting as always and we’ll build on the success of the past two years. Fans can expect various formats including sevens and tens rugby to help with the introduction to fifteens.
Our FNB Varsity Cup sides have now completed round four and this Monday saw UCT host UWC with a 51 – 26 win for UCT and 40-38 win for Stellenbosch against UJ at the Danie Craven Stadium. CPUT finally got their campaign off the ground with a 38-7 away win over FNB Rhodes in the FNB Varsity Shield on Friday.
This past weekend also saw a good result for our DHL WP Rugby u20 side who scored a dramatic 30-29 win over the Vodacom Bulls u20 side. We now travel to Emirates Park to face the Lions on Saturday.
The good news for DHL Stormers fans is that they can see the favourite team first hand as Tickets for the DHL Stormers’ Vodacom United Rugby Championship clash with Italian side Zebre Parma at the Danie Craven Stadium in Stellenbosch on Sunday, March 13 are available now from Webtickets.