• Top schools at Noord-Suid tournament

    Most of the big names in South African schools rugby will be in action at the Noord-Suid tournament at Hoërskool Garsfontein in Pretoria from this Friday, writes THEO GARRUN.

    The top-ranked schools from last year will all be there with the exception of Glenwood and Paul Roos Gimnasium.

    There are gigantic clashes strewn across the three days of competition – even though it is early season and the schools will not have settled on their best combinations – but a few match-ups immediately catch the eye.

    On Saturday, Helpmekaar take on Paarl Boys’ High, and Monument meet Paarl Gimnasium in games that pit the top Gauteng teams from last year against the top ones from the Western Cape.

    On Tuesday Monnas play Booishaai, Helpmekaar meet Boland Landbou, and Affies are up against Outeniqua.

    The festival concludes with a clash between the hosts, Garsfontein, and Grey College.

    Noord-Suid Rugby Festival fixtures:

    Friday
    8:15pm – EG Jansen vs Durbanville
    7:45pm – Affies vs Stellenberg

    Saturday
    12:15pm – Waterkloof vs Boland Landbou
    1:45pm – Helpmekaar vs Paarl Boys’ High
    3:15pm – Menlo Park vs Grey College
    4:45pm – Monument vs Paarl Gimnasium
    6:15pm – Garsfontein vs Outeniqua

    Tuesday
    8:15am – Waterkloof vs Durbanville
    9:45am – EG Jansen vs Stellenberg
    11:15am – Helpmekaar vs Boland Landbou
    12:45pm – Menlo Park vs Paarl Gimnasium
    2:15pm – Monument vs Paarl Boys’ High
    3:45pm – Affies vs Outeniqua
    5:15pm – Garsfontein vs Grey College

    That’s not the only big festival this weekend. The Eastern Cape schools, and SACS of Cape Town, will be in action in Grahamstown at the Graeme College Rugby Day.

    SACS play St Andrew’s College, while the Selborne vs Marlow clash should be interesting.

    Graeme College Rugby Day fixtures:

    8:00am – Nathaniel Nyaluza vs PJ Olivier
    9:10am – Port Alfred vs Muir
    10:20am – Queen’s College vs Framesby
    11:30am – Grey High vs Hudson Park
    12:40pm – Marlow vs Selborne
    1:50pm – Kingswood vs Pearson
    3:00pm – St Andrew’s College vs SACS
    4:10pm – Graeme College vs Dale

    The government schools are all on holiday from Friday, so except for those playing in the various festivals, their season only begins at the beginning of next term. There are, however, matches involving private schools in Joburg and in KwaZulu-Natal.

    St John’s host St Alban’s and St David’s are at home to St Stithians in Joburg, while in the Midlands, St Charles host Michaelhouse and Hilton travel to Kearsney College.

    The shock result of last weekend was Northwood Boys’ first-ever win over Maritzburg College. They beat them 30-26 in Pietermaritzburg. Less surprising were Glenwood’s 22-7 win over Westville, and Hilton’s 20-3 victory over DHS.

    Up north, the three big guns, Helpmekaar, Monument and Affies all had good wins. Helpmekaar beat Waterkloof 45-31, Monument beat Nelspruit 73-7 and Affies were 52-25 winners over Kimberley’s Diamantveld.

    All three will have sterner tests at the Noord-Suid tournament next weekend.

    Photo: William Brown

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    Theo Garrun