Nearly 40 former Springbok rugby players who also played for Maties were witnesses to the Maroon Machine of Stellenbosch University (SU) outplaying the Ikey Tigers from the University of Cape Town (UCT) in their Varsity Cup encounter last night (5 March 2018).
The Springboks were guests at a special function of SU’s Division for Development and Alumni Relations. The likes of Jan Boland Coetzee, Morné du Plessis, Dawie de Villiers, Carel du Plessis, Mannetjies Roux, Dawie Snyman, Rob Louw, Tiaan Strauss, Pieter Rossouw, Breyton Paulse and Corné Krige attended a pre-match function with folksinger Valiant Swart providing the entertainment.
The match formed part of Stellenbosch University’s centenary commemoration and homecoming weekend. Described as the “match of the century“, the game was played in front of a packed Danie Craven Stadium at Coetzenburg in Stellenbosch.
The Maties emerged victorious beating their longtime rivals 33-14. It was at least the 106th time that the two teams met.
The first half was a one-sided affair with the Maties playing against the wind but scoring a continuous stream of tries in windy conditions. The halftime score was 26-0. In the second half, UCT came back much stronger with the bulk of the half played in Maties’ half – scoring two tries to the home team’s one. The Maties’ defence, however, held up long enough to take a full set of Varsity Cup points with them to the showers.
The Maties is still topping the Varsity Cup log and will in all likelihood move into the semi-finals without too much of a bother.
A highlight of the event was Prof Wim de Villiers, SU Rector and Vice-Chancellor, and his UCT counterpart, Dr Max Price, Vice-Chancellor, together with cutting a birthday cake at halftime – symbolising the fact that both SU and UCT (as a degree awarding institution) were officially established in 1918 on the same day. The Maties’ popular mascot, Pokkel, watched over proceedings.