• Tuks pack up for Pukke

    Tuks flyhalf Josh Stander expects their pack to deal with Pukke's physical approach when they meet in Potchefstroom on Monday night.

    The Pretoria students are at the top of the Varsity Cup log, following a 29-29 draw against Shimlas and wins against UCT (39-24) and Maties (53-8), while Pukke are fourth having beaten NMMU 36-26, drawn 26-26 with Maties and suffered a surprise 10-8 defeat to UJ.

    'We’re very strong up front, and are going to match Pukke's game with strength and width,' Stander told SARugbymag.co.za.

    The 21-year-old has been an integral part of Tuks’ recent success, making the No 10 shirt his own.

    Stander attended Queens College and represented Border at U13, U16 and U18 levels, before being contracted to the Bulls. He played for their U19 and U21 sides in 2013 and 2014 respectively, and also turned out for the Vodacom Cup team last year. Now he's been given the chance to impress in the Varsity Cup.

    'The tournament is a great platform for all young players, and I am glad to be part of it,' he said. 'It will definitely improve my running and attacking game in the long run.

    'We've built up some great momentum recently, and are determined to keep it going. While losing fullback Duncan Matthews to injury [an ACL tear] is a huge loss, we don't feel like we've been weakened. We are out there playing for each other, so whether it be an injury, or a mistake on the field, we are there to pick one another up.'

    Varsity Cup preview (Round 4)

    Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

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    Simon Borchardt