DURBAN - There will be an intriguing battle in today’s round of Varsity Cup fixtures as the No 1 and two ranked teams after four games go head-to-head in a game that could change the shape of the top of the log.
Current leaders Maties will travel to the Wits Rugby stadium to take on the surprise package of this year’s Cup. Maties are currently unbeaten and have picked up three out of four winning bonus points along the way.
However, they are only four point clear of Wits, who are led by the charismatic and entertaining Constant Beckerling. Wits have lost just the one game and also managed three bonus points in their showing thus far.
That will be the first game of the day, at 4.45pm and televised, before Ikeys welcome Tuks to Cape Town with the visitors in desperate need of a win. Tuks, somewhat surprisingly, are sitting bottom of the table with only two points, although they have also only played three games.
The Cape Town side are fourth, with two wins out of four games and will know they have a chance at maximum points which will go a long way in a congested mid table.
Kicking off at the same time at the UCT game, 6.30pm, the Madibaz take on Pukke in Port Elizabeth with the home side also in search of their first win of the campaign, having lost all three of their games in agonising circumstances; all by less than seven points.
Pukke are in fifth and despite having to travel for this encounter, they will still feel there is a chance to make some ground on the teams above them.
The final game of the day, 7pm at Shimla Park sees the Free State side take on UJ. Shimlas are just in third on the log behind Wits, although they have won the same amount of games, they have battled to get the extra points on offer. They will now that there is a chance to jump into second spot should Wits falter.
Round Five of the Varsity Cup competition represents a near half way point in the competition, with the finals happening in the 10th round. It will mean that, with the log being so tight, some teams will wan to make their move in solidifying a play-offs spot.
Maties may have the lead with a near-perfect display, but the competition is still fierce and bullish as these sides look for every advantage they can muster.