This weekend’s schools rugby action sees a couple of clashes between highly-ranked teams from last year, and one or two highly charged local derbies, writes THEO GARRUN.
Paarl Gim host Affies in a televised Premier Interschools clash, while last year’s top SA team, Paul Roos Gimnasium, travel to Port Elizabeth to meet Grey High School. In Durban, Monument take on Glenwood.
A local derby that always grabs the attention is the Border schools double-header between Queen’s College and Dale College. They will meet in Queenstown this weekend and again in King Willliam’s Town on 10 August.
In Joburg, KES host near neighbours Parktown Boys’ High.
There could be some extra needle in the Pretoria eastern suburbs derby between Garsfontein and Waterkloof. This is a Virseker Cup game, shoe-horned in at this time of the year after Waterkloof were given a late entry into the competition following a year’s absence.
Waterkloof were kicked out of the Virseker Cup halfway through the 2017 season because they refused to play Garsfontein in the league, citing the latter’s practice of aggressive recruitment as the reason. They weren’t allowed entry into the 2018 competition.
The school has a new principal and asked to be let back in. The other schools voted yes and the A league was increased to nine schools after the fixtures had already been drawn up. Hence the playing of some of their games prior to the official competition kick-off on 11 May.
Both schools have lost once this season. Garsfontein went down 53-30 to Grey College at the Noord-Suid festival, and Waterkloof were beaten 36-31 by Boland Landbou at the same event. Garsfontein beat Outeniqua 28-24 there, and Waterkloof beat Durbanville 63-15.
In other early-season games, Garsfontein defeated Hoërskool Rustenburg 43-3, while Waterkloof were 29-24 winners over Transvalia in their first Virseker clash last weekend.
The two schools are just 7km apart, so this is a proper derby and the players will be thrilled to be playing each other again.
Meanwhile, the St Stithians Easter Prep Schools Festival is under way. There are 18 primary schools teams in action and play continues on Friday and Saturday.
Day 1 results:
KEPS 40 Howick Prep 0
Pridwin 42 St Charles 12
St Stithians 36 Bryanston 0
Umhlali 47 CBC 12
WHPS B 12 St John’s B 10
Penryn 15 St Stithians B 14
St John’s 12 St Peter’s 10
WHPS 66 Orchards 0
St David’s 12 Highbury 7
Raymond Gordon of KEPS vs Howick Prep