The ‘Orange Army’ is looking to make history at home, as they are preparing to battle it out against North West University (FNB-Pukke) in the second-last game of the Varsity Cup Rugby tournament on Monday, 4 April 2016 at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) stadium in Westdene.
Confidence is on a high in the UJ camp as the team prepares for a semi-final showdown against FNB Pukke, following their recent back-to-back victories in Cape Town in the final two rounds of the Varsity Cup. The team’s recent victories have boosted their winning chances and will be buoyed by their momentum as they aim for one last push, to make it to the final.
While the UJ rugby team has never won the competition, the 2016 UJ squad looks like one of the strongest assembled teams in the past four seasons. The team oozes a winning mentality and they are in a strong position to make it to their first ever final.
“We want to be successful and ultimately be the first ever UJ side to be victorious. We have developed over time and now turned into a group of guys who believe they can do it,” says Coach Werner Janse van Rensburg.
However, the game dynamics have changed, as this is a once-off encounter. UJ will have to be fully aware not to underestimate their opposition as FNB Pukke have been in this position before. Captain Kobus Porter says: “The team is looking forward to play, have fun and play a good game for ourselves and for our University. We will go into the semis with the right attitude and confidence, and with that we can win the competition. This is a well assembled side and we are ready for Monday.”
The UJ camp remains humble for this big occasion as pundits and statistics favour the Johannesburg side coming into the last four tie. “We need to treat this like any other game and keep a focused attitude,” says Captain Porter.
Statistics coming into the Semis
FNB UJ: WWWLWWW
Top Points Scorer: Divan Nel (82 Points)
Last semi-final: 2013 Vs FNB UP- Tuks (Lost 61-24)
Final: No final appearances
FNB Pukke: WLWWLWW
Top Points Scorer: Rhyno Smith (54 Points)
Last semi-final: 2015 vs FNB UP- TUKS (Won 29-28)
Final: 2014 Final vs FNB IKEYS (Lost 39-33)
2015 Final vs FNB Shimlas (Lost 63-33)
This semi-final clash will be broadcast on Supersport channel 1. The first semi-final will kick-off at 16:30. Varsity Cup Rugby – Rugby that Rocks!