College Rovers won the National Club Champs for the first time when they shocked Maties 24-15 on Friday.
For the KZN champions, it was a case of third time lucky after they had lost the two previous finals they had appeared in, in 2006 and 2008. It was also the second year running that an open club – after Hamilton in 2009 – had beaten a Varsity Cup team in the Club Champs final.
It was the first time in 30 years that Maties had lost in the final. Their eight-match unbeaten streak in deciders was broken by a committed Rovers side whose defence, which was their hallmark throughout the tournament, again proved to be impenetrable.
Flyhalf Wesley Dunlop, one of the standout players during the week-long tournament, was again magnificent, kicking a conversion, three penalties and a drop goal to dash the Stellenbosch students’ dreams of an unprecedented 13th title.