UWC rugby team, aka FNB UWC, beat Walter Sisulu University (FNB WSU) 55-10 to clinch the FNB Varsity Shield tournament for the second consecutive year, bidding their goodbyes to the competition in grand style.
In front of capacity-full home supporters at UWC Sports Stadium, fondly known as the Operation Room, that was full of entertainment on and off the field, UWC continued what they have been doing throughout the tournament over the past two years, dominating their opponents and producing fascinating running rugby.
Although the visitors were first on the score sheet when they scored two points from a penalty, Udubs reacted almost immediately by dotting down in the first 10 minutes through a Tristan Leyds try and conversion by Keagan Fortune to take a 8-2 lead. The remainder of the game was controlled by UWC who dominated possession and territory for the most part of the game and led 37-2 at half time, thanks to tries by Mark Bright, Bronlee Mouries, Adrian Paarwater and Lubelo Scott as well as three more conversions by Fortune to stretch the lead to 37-2 at half time.
In the second half, the home side continued where they left in the first stanza with Scott and Leyds scoring their second tries of the evening while Fortune also dotted down. Captain Aidynn Cupido made one conversion to ensure that that UWC ended the game with an emphatic 55-10 score line.
Assistant coach Lionel Langenhoven said the win was the culmination of a process that started three years ago when the team set themselves achievable goals to not only get promotion to the Varsity Cup but to do so in style. “The majority of our supporters are students and we need to entertain them and that is what we did.”
Langenhoven said the team’s motto was “performance equal capability and good behaviour”. “If the quality of your behaviour is not good, then you lose your capability to perform. So we set high standards in terms of attitude and discipline and if that is intact then your capability looks after itself.
Having earned promotion to the Varsity Cup – South Africa’s premier university rugby competition – next year, the win was a perfect send-off for Udubs and a good foundation for the Cup next year.
Langenhoven allayed fears that UWC might be the whipping boys in the Cup next year. “We see the promotion to the Cup as a challenge and we won’t go there and make fools of ourselves and disappoint our iconic university because we serve our university first -- then the Varsity Cup”.
FNB UWC (37) 55 - Tries: Tristan Leyds (2), Penalty Try, Bronlee Mouries, Adriaan Paarwater, Kurt-Lee Arendse, Keagan Fortune, Lubelo Scott
Conversions: Keagan Fortune (4), Aidynn Cupido
FNB WSU (2) 10 - Try: Henrico Koester. Conversion: Lusanda Xakwana. Penalty: Lusanda Xakwana
FNB UWC Starting XV: 15. Tristan Leyds, 14. Kurt-Lee Arendse, 13. Lubelo Scott, 12. Aidynn Cupido (captain), 11. Mujaahid van der Hoven, 10. Keagan Fortune, 9. Clayton Daniels, 8. Adrian Paarwater, 7. Mark Bright, 6. Athi Magwala, 5. Bronlee Mouries, 4. Alwyn Carstens, 3. Justin Theys, 2. Jacques van Zyl, 1. Muammir Salie
Replacements: 16. Luan Durandt, 17. Luvo Bazi, 18. Angelo Rossouw, 19. Hadley Hendricks, 20. Branden de Kock, 21. Luke Cyster, 22. Carlton Fortune, 23. Bradley Jumaats. - Head coach: Chester Williams
FNB Player That Rocks: Adriaan Paarwater (FNB UWC)