The battle of the rugby shield tightens
Wits rugby team Medics “Young Doctors” is currently number one at the university, having lost none of their matches this year from ten teams. Their latest victory was against Monash for the Rugby Internal League play off.
Following Young Doctors is Masakhane with 208 points and the Engineers with 173 points. The SA Union of Jewish Students (SAUJS) which still have not won any games since the league started, managed only 50 points and continue to remain at the bottom this semester.
SAUJS have not played any games this semester and have been troubled since their team had a leadership deficit – their manager only just returned two weeks ago from a two month trip overseas. Alan Leonard, Rugby Internal League coordinator, said, “If SAUJS cannot continue then the scores for SAUJS will be wiped out and it will be as if they had not played. That levels the playing field”.
Meanwhile, Masakhane is determined to take the Medics on in the finale after they lost only one game last semester against the Medics. Katlego Maseko, Masakhane captain said his team had no problems, had “the best defence in the league” and he hoped to see Medics in the final.
Even though the Medics have done extremely well their captain, Donovan Heslop disclosed that “one part of our game that needs work is our defence and kicking, this has always been a problem with us our strongest asset has been our attack, we have very exciting players who are able to create tries when needed.”
For the past three years the Medics have only made it to the semi-finals, not winning the cup. Heslop said this time, “Our goal is to make the final and hopefully win the league.”
As for Mens Res, they opened this semester with another loss. Leonard said, “Last week their fitness was not up to scratch and they seem to change their team every week.”
“I think the other teams have got stronger but also with the disruptions the teams have not played the same number of games,” he added.
Monash captain, Tatenda Mtemeri said that one of the reasons for their lack lustre performance well is that they had a lot of new players most of which were under 19. They had only three seniors remaining.
However, it’s not really a Super 6 anymore; this year all teams will play until the semi-finals. This means that all teams on the league, Medics, Masakhane, Engineers, Commerce, Monash, Humanities (Titans), Mens Res (Raiders), South African Hellenic Association (SHA), MGI Tigers and SAUJs will be part of the remaining three rounds of the games.
The Rugby Internal League Final will take place on September 10, with only three rounds left until the play-offs. The last week will see a five game round if SAUJS emerges from its leadership crises and continue to play, according to Leonard.
Close on the Medics’ heels for winner, according to the current standing, looks likely to be Masakhane or the Engineers.