Varsity Cup shock as defending champs Tuks are relegated

The University of Pretoria side will compete in the Varsity Shield competition next season.


Wits made a fast start in Johannesburg on Monday night to beat Tuks and consign the defending Varsity Cup champions to relegation.

Leading 19-7 at half time, the hosts survived a late fightback for a 33-21 victory while improving their hopes of reaching the knockout stages.

Tuks came into the match knowing that a loss would consign them to the Varsity Shield next season.

Poor start

They could not have asked for a worse start as Wits scored three unanswered tries through Setshaba Mokoena, Wian De Lange and Lindo Ncusane with the forwards providing the muscle up front while the backs brought the razzle dazzle to the Wits Stadium.

The visitors finally strung some phases together and got onto the scoreboard through winger Bayanda Ngubane as they went into the break with plenty of work to do.

A surprise victory for UJ over Maties, which ended as the second half began at Wits Stadium, meant that Tuks would have to come back and win with a bonus-point try to have any hope of avoiding relegation.

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Their fate seemed sealed when Wits lock Henk Gouws crashed over the line as the men from Pretoria were beginning to run out of time.

However, Tuks hit back next through No 8 Divan Venter and Zander Reynders whose point-of-origin try brought them within five points late in the final quarter.

Prop Banele Mthenjane then broke Tuks hearts as he powered over to score and secure a hard-earned victory.

This story first appeared on sarugbymag.co.za. It is republished here with permission. For the original story, click here.

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University of Pretoria(TUKS)

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