Grey College will be looking for their 42nd consecutive home win when they play Affies in the pick of this weekend’s round of schoolboy matches.
Both sides are coming off the back of a win, with Grey having defeated Paarl Boys’ 50-8 last weekend and Affies sneaking past arch-rivals Pretoria Boys’ 20-15. Grey and Affies have met 30 times since 1953, with the latter having claimed just three victories (the last of which came in 2006). Grey defeated Affies 31-12 in Pretoria last season.
By all accounts, Affies will be in for a long afternoon. Grey have a juggernaut pack, with No 8 Neil Jordaan and hooker Baksteen van Heerden having been particularly instrumental in their team’s success this season. However, Grey will have to be clinical at the breakdown as Affies captain and flanker Reinhardt Heydenrych has been in superb form, stealing opposition ball at will.
There are a few interesting fixtures to keep an eye on in the Western Cape.
Bishops take on a SACS side that is low on confidence after being thrashed 52-21 by Rondebosch last weekend. Bishops, on the other hand, are unbeaten and have played some sublime running rugby this season. They narrowly squeezed past Boland Landbou (19-15) and Dave Mallett’s side will be looking for a more clinical performance against SACS. Bishops will once again rely heavily on their two standout players, No 8 Nizaam Carr and pivot and captain Sam Lane. The weather could also have a big impact on the game, with a massive cold front expected to hit Cape Town on Friday.
Meanwhile, Rondebosch will host Paul Roos in what promises to be an explosive encounter. Both sides recorded good wins last weekend with Bosch smashing SACS and Paul Roos beating Paarl Gym 47-36. Paul Roos will start the game as heavy favourites. They will try to to free up enterprising fullback Craig Barry, who made huge inroads with some scintillating runs last Saturday, while scrumhalf and captain Rick Schroeder will look to snipe around the fringes at any given opportunity. Rondebosch, on the other hand, have a pack that can compete with the best in the country and will be looking to take their visitors on physically. Loose forwards Chad Mathews and Michael Aristedeau will spearhead the Bosch charge.
Wynberg will be hosting Paarl Boys’ High, with the latter desperate to return to winning ways after their heavy defeat to Grey College. Wynberg, however, are a determined side at home and will be looking to free up the talented Williams brothers – Ashley and Ezra – in the centres. Paarl Boys’ coaches Elmo Wolfaard and Richard Visagie have worked hard this week to eradicate the elementary errors that cost them so dearly in Bloemfontein. They will rely heavily on flyhalf Gavin Hauptfleisch to get the Paarl side moving forward, especially in conditions that are wet underfoot.
In other fixtures, Paarl Gym will host Boland Landbou in Paarl, Pretoria Boys’ High travel to St John’s and St Stithians take on Jeppe. Keep an eye out for St John’s right wing Manjalo Madiba and Jeppe flank Ricardo Menezes.
By Gareth Wright