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On Saturday 21st May 2016 the mighty Grey College from Bloemfontein take on Paarl Boys’ High in Paarl in what is expected to be the highlight of the schoolboy rugby season.

The two schools are rated as the two top sides in the country at the moment and this match is anticipated as the true clash of the titans! Grey College will be eager to re-establish themselves as the top dog in school’s rugby after their previous season when they were plagued by injuries. They currently have injury problems but the replacement players stepped up well and in doesn’t look like the team is any weaker because of it. Paarl Boys on the other hand has set the benchmark since 2015 and has been unbeaten in 30 straight games.

The two teams play a totally different style of rugby. Grey College likes to play at a high pace and thrive on turnover ball and counter attacks. While the Paarl team is more renowned for their solid defence and structured play where they wear a team down and then attack wide with their speedy backs. Continue reading

Ajax CT U19. Pic from ajaxct.co.za

Ajax CT U19. Pic from ajaxct.co.za

Our U19 team have been crowned the very first champions of the NextGen tournament, beating English giants Tottenham Hotspurs 2-0 in the final.

Spurs pushed hard from the first whistle as they sought revenge for the defeat our boys dealt them in the group stages, but Jody February and his defence were once again up for the challenge.

The first half saw a tightly contested match, where neither side created many clear chances. Both goalkeepers remained largely untroubled throughout the half.

The second half produced some great inter-play by our boys, moving the ball up the park quickly. A quick counter attack left Leo Thetani one-on-one with the Spurs goalkeeper, Thetani made no mistake as he calmly lobbed the ball into the back of the net.

Another counter attack just a few minutes later saw Thetani in front of goal once again, the winger produced another great lob to get his second of the match, sealing the tie, ensuring that we become the very first NextGen Champions!

Congratulations to our technical team Vladislav Heric, Robbie Santo, Shivaan Sayed and Milo Boer on their fantastic work throughout this tournament. A special congratulations as well to our amazing squad of players who did the business bringing home this amazing cup.

Springbok Sevens squad members Siviwe Soyizwapi and Chris Dry will join the Blitzboks in London on Tuesday morning as part of the team that will participate in the HSBC London Sevens at Twickenham this weekend.

Soyizwapi replaces Ruhan Nel and Dry comes in for Kwagga Smith. Nel suffered a broken collarbone in last weekend’s HSBC Paris Sevens while Smith injured his ankle.

Both Soyizwapi and Dry last played at the Singapore Sevens last month and Springbok Sevens coach Neil Powell said both players were in contention to play in Paris last weekend too. Continue reading

Tickets for the South African ‘A’ team’s matches against the touring England Saxons side, next month in Bloemfontein and George, have gone on sale.

Rugby supporters in the Free State and South Western Districts can see the next best sides from South Africa and England from as little as R20 for children and R50 for adults.

Both matches will feature curtain-raisers between provincial school sides, at Under-13 and Under-18 levels.

The first match is at the Toyota Stadium in Bloemfontein on Friday, 10 June and the second match is a week later, on 17 June, at Outeniqua Park in George. Continue reading

PARIS, FRANCE - MAY 13: during the Womens Sevens Training Games match between France and South Africa Select team at Stade Jean Bouin on May 13, 2016 in Paris, France. (Photo by Roger Sedres/Gallo Images)

PARIS, FRANCE – MAY 13: during the Womens Sevens Training Games match between France and South Africa Select team at Stade Jean Bouin on May 13, 2016 in Paris, France. (Photo by Roger Sedres/Gallo Images)

Springbok Women’s Sevens coach, Renfred Dazel, on Sunday applauded the effort of the SA Women’s Select side in an invitational tournament played in Paris and Marcoussis this weekend.

The South Africans played against Brazil and the French national A and B sides in a round-robin tournament, and Dazel was pleased with the exposure to high level competition his side enjoyed.

Dazel’s team won all three matches against Brazil, with a 24-14 victory on Sunday at the French Rugby Federation headquarters in Marcoussis to build on a 19-14 victory against the Olympic Games hosts on Saturday and a 14-5 victory in their opening match on Friday.

The South African’s, however, came up short against France A and France B respectively, going down 26-0 against France A on Sunday and 24-14 on Friday, and 26-0 against France B on Saturday.

Despite this, Dazel said they learned valuable lessons in the process. Continue reading

The Springbok Sevens team on Sunday won the Plate Final of the HSBC Paris Sevens and stayed second on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series log with one tournament to go.

South Africa scored a 17-7 win over Australia in the Plate Final after an earlier 29-19 win over New Zealand in the semifinal.

A 21-10 defeat to eventual winners, Samoa, in the Cup quarterfinals first up in the Stade Jean Bouin tripped up the Blitzboks for an eight consecutive semifinal berth though. Samoa went on to beat Fiji 29-26 in the final.

Springbok Sevens coach Neil Powell was pleased with the way his team fought back after being knocked out of the Cup competition by Samoa. Continue reading

New crop of young leaders emerge from the 2016 Laureus ‘Youth Empowerment through Sport’ programme

(South Africa, May 2016) Laureus recently launched the 2016 edition of its six month Youth Empowerment through Sport (YES) programme, which kicked off with a very successful educational training camp hosted in Cape Town from 28 April to 6 May 2016.  Twenty youths from various Laureus-funded projects participated in the interactive training workshop and were provided with the necessary tools to help them ignite positive change in their lives and local communities.

The list of influencers involved in motivational sessions included Laureus SA Chairman Morné du Plessis, Laureus ambassador and former Banyana Banyana captain, Desiree Ellis as well as South African outdoor adventurer and motivational speaker Ron Rutland. The key themes explored at these sessions included: the importance of personal development and how to set and attain key life goals as well as conquering your fears, dealing with conflict and seeking solution-driven tactics to overcome challenges. Continue reading

Centre Lionel Mapoe scored three of the Emirates Lions’ seven tries in their 43-5 Vodacom Super Rugby victory over the Blues on a soaking wet Emirates Airline Park on Saturday evening. The Highveld side also moved passed the DHL Stormers to the top team of the combined South African group standings.

The Johannesburg team gained five points and the DHL Stormers only two, after the Cape side managed to salvage a 17-all draw against the Sunwolves in Singapore thanks to a last-gasp try by replacement prop Vincent Koch. Currently, the Emirates Lions have 32 points, one more than their Cape Town rivals.

In the late match on Saturday evening, Springbok flyhalf Patrick Lambie kicked 20 points to steer the Cell C Sharks to a close-fought 25-22 victory over the Jaguares in Buenos Aires. The Durban outfit led 19-17 at halftime in this gripping encounter and the four points they collected moved them to third place in the SA group on 30 points.

The Argentine side outscored their South African opponents by three tries to one, but it was the composed performance with the boot by Lambie that proved the difference between the two teams. Continue reading

The Junior Springboks kicked off their warm-up phase for the World Rugby Under-20 Championship on a solid note on Friday with an encouraging 60-19 victory against a Xerox Golden Lions Under-20 Invitational side at Wits University in Johannesburg.

The Junior Springboks scored 10 tries – four in the first half and six in the second half. Toyota Free State wing Mosolwa Mafuma scored four tries for the SA U20s, while the hosts scored three.

Junior Springbok coach Dawie Theron was satisfied with the result, but he said there was hard work ahead to improve the areas of their game that were lacking before the international spectacle.

“I am pleased with certain aspects of our game and I think we can take several positives into our matches against Maties and SWD,” said Theron. Continue reading

Junior Springbok coach Dawie Theron on Thursday named his team to face a combined Xerox Golden Lions Under-19 and Under-21 team in their first warm-up match.

The match will take place on Friday at Wits University and is the Junior Boks’ first fully-fledged encounter in the lead-up to the World Rugby U20 Championship in Manchester, England, from 7 to 25 June.

The starting line-up features the Vodacom Blue Bulls halfback combination of flyhalf Manie Libbok and scrumhalf Embrose Papier, while DHL Western Province locks Eduard Zandberg and Ruben de Villiers will join forces in the engine room. Continue reading

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