Friday, June 29, 2012


The Blue Bulls End Up As The Strongest Team In This Years Coca-Cola U13 Craven Week

Bloemfontein 29 June 2012 ­- The curtain came down on the 41st Coca-Cola Craven Week at Grey College in Bloemfontein on Friday with a cracker of a final game between Western Province and the Blue Bulls.

The boys from Pretoria came back from an 8-5 halftime deficit to win 19-8 in the end in a high quality game that confirmed the riches of rugby talent that exist in the lower age groups at South Africa's schools.

The win made the Blue Bulls one of just two teams to finish the week with four wins out of four and they become the unofficial champions of the Coca-Cola under-13 Craven Week.

Province took control from the start and when they went ahead in the fourth minute via try by lock Philip Van Dyk in the fourth minute, it looked like it was going to be an easy win for them. Henry Chamberlain added a penalty soon afterward, but that was to be the last points they scored.

The Bulls kept in tight and their forwards did well to keep control of the ball. They got a try through flanker, Gerhard Bierman, on the stroke of half time to make it 8-5 at the break.

It was all the Bulls in the second half. Their impressive flank, Divhan Du Preez got his fourth try of the week and diminutive scrumhalf Johan Mulder rounded off the scoring when he darted over from a ruck seven minutes from the end. Werner Nel and Charles Goedhals each kicked one conversion.

The defeat meant that Western Province won three of their four matches. Boland and the Leopards we the other sides that won three out of four games at the week.

Griquas beat the Valke 16-10 in the main curtain-raiser to become the only other team to end the week unbeaten. They were 7-10 down at half time before flyhalf Rikus Pieters slotted three second-half penalties to secure the victory. Their try was by Desmond Jacobs. Luke De Beer dotted down for the Valke and Lionel Ackerman added a penalty and a conversion.

The Golden Lions ended a disappointing week with their fourth consecutive loss. They went down 17-12 to the hosts, Free State, who were also below par - their win over the Lions was their second victory at the week.


Pumas 43 Zimbabwe 0, Namibia 15 Border Country Districts 3, Free State 17 Golden Lions 12, Border 15 Limpopo 10, Eastern Province 20 KwaZulu-Natal 5, Leopards 17 Griffons 5, Boland 22 SWD 12, Griquas 17 Valke 10, Blue Bulls 19 Western Province 8.

Thursday, June 28, 2012


The 41st Coca-Cola under-13 Craven Week ends in Bloemfontein on Friday with the teams from Western Province and the Blue Bulls being given the honour of contesting the week's concluding fixture.

All the Coca-Cola SA Rugby Youth Weeks are strictly festivals, with no overall winners or players of the tournaments being announced.

So, the only prize on offer is a place in the unofficial final - the last game on the last day. There is no doubt that both the Blue Bulls and Western Province richly deserve the honour of playing in the showpiece game of this week.

They are two of only three teams to come through unbeaten over the first three days of play and they played the most effective and attractive rugby on view.

The Blue Bulls turned it on in the second half of a tight game against SWD on Thursday , scoring four tries without reply to win 28 -5.

Their tries were by Jaco Labuschagne (2), Werner Nel, Johan Van Zyl and Juandre Du Piesane. Charles Goedhals kicked three conversions.

Chaunton Prins dotted down for the Young Eagles.

The Blue Bulls beat Eastern Province 31-6 on day one and Border 34-10 on day two.

Western Province were very impressive in downing the Valke17-0 in the final game of the third day.

They led 5-0 at the break against a very game Valke side, but had too much power for them in the end and they got two more tries in the second half.

The tries were scored by Xolani Masembathe (two) and by eighthman Zakareeyah Sallie, who has been easily the standout player at the week. Henry Chamberlain converted one of the tries.

In their earlier matches Province beat the Pumas and the Leopards, both by 35 points to six.

The other side to win on each of the three opening days was Griquas. They beat KwaZulu-Natal 11-5 on Thursday and have been rewarded with a matchup against the Valke in Friday’s second-last game.

The hosts, Free State, finally got on the winning track with a 34-0 win over Zimbabwe, while the Golden Lions suffered the ignominy of losing to the Border Country Districts and they are banished to the B field tomorrow where they will face the hosts.

“All Coca-Cola Youth Weeks, of which there are four, are aimed at identifying and nurturing talent within South Africa,” said Coca-Cola SA Marketing Asset Manager, Craig Van Niekerk.  “Seeing players progress through the various Coca-Cola Rugby Youth Weeks is amazing and we are proud to be the sponsor to make this transition possible.”


Free State 34 Zimbabwe 0, Namibia 10 Pumas 7, Border Country Districts 19 Golden Lions 5, Leopards 24 Border 5, Griffons 22 Limpopo 0, Boland 22 Eastern Province 12, Griquas KwaZulu-Natal, Blue Bulls SWD, Western Province 17 Valke 0.

Friday's Fixtures

B Field - 9am Zimbabwe v Pumas, 9.50am Namibia v Border Country Districts, 10.40am Free State v Golden Lions.

A Field – 9am Border v Limpopo, 9.50am KwaZulu-Natal v Eastern Province, 10.40am Griffons v Leopards, 11.30am Boland v SWD, 12.20pm Griquas v Valke, 1.10pm Blues Bulls v Western Province.


The Coca-Cola under-18 Academy Week, an annual interprovincial tournament aimed at development and transformation, will take place in Wellington from July 2 to 5.

The 26 teams are chosen according to a formula which sees a minimum of 11 players from previously disadvantaged backgrounds combined with a maximum of 11 players from other groups.

These selection restrictions do not always apply and many of the provinces select their best squad from the players who narrowly missed out on Coca-Cola Craven Week selection.

South Africa’s new captain, Jean De Villiers, competed in a Coca-Cola Academy Week in 1999.  He didn’t make the Academy team which goes to prove that players must never give up. Talent will always shine through.

The teams will all play three matches: on Monday July 2 and Tuesday July 3. Wednesday is a rest day and all the sides play their final game on Thursday July 5.

As is customary, the fixtures for the first day only have been announced. The games for the following days are arranged on a strength v strength basis at the end of each day’s play.

A national Academy side is selected at the week and it has, in the past, proved itself to be almost as strong as the South African Schools team that is chosen at the under-18 Coca-Cola Craven Week.  Further, the South African Schools and SA Rugby under19 selectors attend the Academy Week, so the players have plenty to play for.

The players also perform in front of a number of scouts from the professional rugby organisations looking for players to sign up.  Then there are the Universities who offer bursaries to players who can bolster their Varsity Cup sides in the years to come. 

For many players who will be in Wellington, this serious rugby occasion could well be the first step on his career development ladder.

“All Coca-Cola Youth Weeks, of which there are four, are aimed at identifying and nurturing talent within South Africa,” said Coca-Cola SA Marketing Asset Manager, Craig Van Niekerk.  “Coca-Cola has sponsored Rugby Development for 27 years and since the inception of the Under 18 Coca-Cola Craven Week back in 1964, there have been 243 springboks that have emerged.”

The sides from SA Rugby’s senior provinces will be joined by country district teams from Border, Eastern Province, KwaZulu-Natal, Pumas, Leopards and Griquas. There is also a team from Limpopo and two from the Valke – representing their Vaal Triangle and East Rand regions, and one selected at the Craven Week for Schools for learners with Special Educational Needs (LSEN), held the week preceding the Academy Week.

The hosts, Boland will supply the 26th team – a Boland XV – to make up the even numbers.

The fixtures for day 1 are: Pumas CD v Griffons, Eastern Province CD v Leopards, Limpopo v Border, Blue Bulls v Eastern Province, SWD v KwaZulu-Natal, Western Province v Lions, Boland v Free State, Border CD v Blue Valke, Silver Valke v SA LSEN Schools, Pumas v Griffons CD, Griquas v Namibia, Griquas CD v Boland XV, KwaZulu-Natal CD v Leopards CD.


The Coca-Cola under-16 Grant Khomo Week takes place at The University of Johannesburg from July 2 to 5. Twenty provincial teams will play three matches each over four days, in a festival of rugby, with no overall winner at the end of the week.

The under-16 week was introduced by SA Rugby in 2003 after the union recognised a gap in the development process of young rugby players. It was decided that the period between the Coca-Cola under-13 and under-18 Craven Weeks was too long, and too many talented players were being lost in between the two.

The result was the introduction of an under-16 interprovincial week and it has become an integral part of SA Rugby’s Youth Weeks programme which is held during the winter school holidays each year.

When the week was introduced it was decided to name it after one of the unsung heroes of South African rugby – Grant Khomo. He was regarded as one of the best centre three quarters South Africa has ever had, and was later to become the President of the then South African African Rugby Board (SAARB).

He and his team built a strong culture of quality rugby among black people, using schools as nurseries. Grant Khomo originally came from Mokopane in Limpopo where he represented his province in athletics, soccer and tennis.

His introduction to rugby came when he attended the University of Fort Hare in the 1940s. After his university days, he went back and captained a Transvaal team, made up largely of Cape-born players who had been recruited by the mining companies for their rugby prowess.

Khomo led the first selected African national rugby team to a 14-3 victory over their coloured counterparts in 1950. He captained the team for the next two years.

Khomo also captained the Bantu national soccer team against a coloured side and held the national African tennis title.

In 2003, Khomo became the first black rugby icon recognised by the South African Rugby Union on a national level, when the under-16 component of the schools’ interprovincial tournament was named the Grant Khomo     Coca-Cola Week.

The Coca-Cola under-16 Grant Khomo Week is all about early talent identification, ahead of preparing players for senior rugby. The under-16 year is recognised as a crucial one in player development and so the   Coca-Cola  Grant Khomo Week is used as an educational opportunity, telling the players about conditioning, nutrition and mental preparation.

The SA Sports Institute is present at the week, as is the SA Institute for Drug Free Sport. Players showing the potential to go further in the game are recognised at this week and the SA Rugby provincial unions are tasked with overseeing their further development ahead of Coca-Cola Craven Week selection in two years’ time.

“All Coca-Cola Youth Weeks, of which there are four, are aimed at identifying and nurturing talent within South Africa,” said Coca-Cola SA Marketing Asset Manager, Craig Van Niekerk.  “Seeing players progress through the various Coca-Cola Rugby Youth Weeks is amazing and we are proud to be the sponsor to make this transition possible.”

The teams at the Coca-Cola under-16 Grant Khomo Week will all play three matches: on Monday July 2 and Tuesday July 3. Wednesday is a rest day and all the sides play their final game on Thursday July 5.

As is customary, the fixtures for the first day only have been announced. The games for the following days are arranged, on a strength v strength basis, at the end of each day’s play thereafter.

The fixtures for the first day are: Pumas v KwaZulu-Natal, Blue Bulls v Griffons, Free State v Valke, Eastern Province v SWD, Golden Lions v Western Province, Border CD v Griquas CD, Leopards v Namibia, Border v Boland, Golden Lions XV v Zimbabwe, Griquas v Limpopo.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012


Sporting excellence doesn't happen by accident, it takes a grand design, plenty of hard work and a solid support structure. That certainly applies to this country's consistent prowess, at all levels, in rugby and this is evident at Grey College in Bloemfontein where the 41st annual Coca-Cola under-13 Craven Week is taking place.

The under-13 event is the entry level into SA Rugby's youth development structure and the foundation phase of Coca-Cola's Youth Week programme - the under-16 Coca-Cola Grant Khomo Week and the under-18 Coca-Cola Academy and Craven Weeks are the other legs of the partnership between Coca-Cola and the national rugby body.

The under-13 week is unique in world rugby. Nowhere else is there an interprovincial tournament at this level. And it's only possible because of the extraordinary dedication of rugby people.  Attending the week is chief executive, Jurie Roux, medical head Clint Readhead and manager of junior teams, Yusuf Jackson.

The success is as a result of a formula that has been developed over the 40 year and it forms the solid foundation for the five years of high school rugby that lie ahead. Under the circumstances, the players in action are not the finished item yet. They are at an age when physical growth is only just starting.

However there are quite a few giants around who have already experienced a spurt in growth and they tend to dominate the matches they are in. But everyone understands that the smaller players are not going to stay that way for much longer, so the emphasis is on skills rather than brute force.

“The Coca-Cola Under 13 week is a rugby-lover's dream and a rich breeding ground of future talent,” said Craig Van Niekerk, Coca-Cola Marketing Asset Manager.  “It's also the first step in the process that makes South African rugby great.  Further, we utilise the opportunity to promote the development of healthy lifestyles which forms part of our ‘Live for a Difference’ strategy.”

Wednesday is a rest day at the week. All the teams will be playing at the Free State Stadium on Thursday, with the fixtures for the final day, including the last game - the unofficial final - being announced at the end of the day's play

Thursday's Fixtures.

9.30am Free State v Zimbabwe, 10.20am Pumas v Namibia, 11.10am Border Country v Golden Lions, 12pm Border v Leopards, 12.50pm Griffons v Limpopo, 1.40pm Boland v Eastern Province, 2.30pm Griquas v KwaZulu-Natal, 3.20pm Blue Bulls v SWD, 4.10pm Western Province v Valke.


Johnson Mafa, ex Gauteng Strikers provincial cricketer, has been named the KFC Mini-Cricket Coach of the Month for June. The award is in recognition of the hard work and dedication towards the volunteer coaches programme.
For 10 years Mafa has been coaching youngsters in the Rockville and Moroka area in Soweto.  “It is fantastic to be rewarded for hard work,” said Mafa.  “I am no longer playing professional cricket so can really focus on my KFC Mini-Cricket programme and the next step is to get more schools involved.”

Mafa currently coaches two schools in the area (Isaacson and Molalatladi Primary Schools) and his aim is to reach the other 10.  “Cricket and children are my greatest loves and that is why I started coaching mini-cricket 10 years ago,during my free time, and now that I have given up the competitive game, my focus will be to grow cricket in Soweto.”

While Mafa, who played for the Gauteng Strikers from 1999 until 2012, has not produced a player that has gone on to compete professionally, he says that it is the little characters he coaches that drive him.  “It gives me such pleasure to see the enthusiasm and funny things the kids do.  We have such laughs sometimes,”

But there are also challenging situations that Mafa has to manage and he uses cricket to teach life skills, family values andto build confidence by giving his players a sense of belonging. “Sport is unique in that not only is it fun, but through sport kids can learn a host of life skills that help them develop into well balanced and happy adults.”

Mafa singles out one particular player: “I have a 10 year old, BafanaMfaba who lost his parents when he was very young and now lives with his aunt.  He is such an inspiration to all the other children.  He walks five kilometres to and from the programme, which is based at his school, but he is always half an hour early and is the last to go home.  He is passionate about cricket and his goal is to one day play professionally.  The other children call him ‘coach’ resulting from his dedication and his seriousness.  He even disciplines the other children if they fool around.”

Cricket is a growing sport in the townships and rural areas, but there is still a long way to go. It’s the desire to have all South Africans, at every social and economic level activeand balanced that keeps KFC inspired to support KFC Mini-Cricket. 

During the 2011/12 season the programme grew by 20 percent and now over 100 000 kids are getting active by getting into KFC Mini-Cricket.  The kudos must go to the6 000 volunteer coaches in the programme who generously give their time and skills to ensure that the children from over 3 500 schools that participate can be coached 365-daysa year. 

To broaden the intake for KFC Mini-Cricket further, Cricket South Africa (CSA) will be expanding the KFC Mini-Cricket programme to include rural areas


Eletsa Secondary School from Brits in the Bojanala Region won R100 000 after being crowned the North West under-19 Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup football provincial champions at the Montshiwa Stadium last Saturday. 

Eletsa won all their league games which placed them top of the log. Eletsa and second place finishers, Sol Plaatje will go on to complete in the National Finals to be held in Bloemfontein from 2 to 6 October.

After six outing in the competition this is Eletsa’s first provincial title, however the school competed in the national finals in 2010 after finishing in second place in the provincials.  Eletsa’s third place national finish that year won the school R500 000 which was spent on a bore hole, upgrading of classrooms, a trophy cabinets, restoration of electricity, computers and perimeter fencing. 

Eletsa coach, Goodman Ramakobye, has a South African Football Association (SAFA) Level One coaching certificate and is an assistant coach at Second Division Club, North West Shining Stars.  He has coached at the school for five years and believes that with the players he has this year the school could well win the nationals and the R1 million that goes with it.

“We lost dismally last year in the provincial finals,” said Ramakobye.  “But the learning experience one gets from a loss often results in a win the second time around and I believe the players are more focused and determined this year and are listening to my instructions.”

Ramakobye has players from last year in his squad including midfielder, Paul Knight:  “Paul has some excellent qualities such as his dribbling skills. He has pace and takes on defenders with confidence.”

Defender Molemo Siloane is also a player Ramakobye believes could well become a household name in the future. “He is fast, is good in the air and reads the game well,” said his coach. All the Eletsa players compete for Junior Chiefs Football Club, currently in third position in the North West SAFA Development League. 

Paul Knight dreams of winning the R1 million: “I saw the impact the 2010 third place prize money had on the school and, while I am happy to be part of the team that won the R100 000, I would like to increase this figure as a token of appreciation to the school for the support given to me.”

Sanlam Development Manager in Mafikeng Lebo Nkete says: “Sanlam understands the value of development and the opportunity it gives youngsters to achieve what they hope for. We believe that the Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup creates opportunities that have a positive impact on the youth, and provides exposure to scouts for talented players.



Seiphemelo Secondary School (Dr Kenneth Kaunda Region)

Sol Plaatje Secondary School (Ngaka Modiri Molema Region)

Gaopalelwe Secondary School (Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati Region)

Eletsa Secondary School (Bojanala Region)

Seiphemelo Secondary School 1  vs  Sol Plajte Secondary School 2

Seiphemelo Secondary Scool 0  vs Gaopalelwe Secondary School 0

Seiphemelo Secondary School 1 vs Eletsa Secondary School 5

Sol Plaatje Secondary school  4 vs Gaopalelwe Secondary school 2

Sol Plaatje Secondary school 2 vs Eletsa Secondary School 2

Gaopalelwe Secondary School 0 vs Eletsa Secondary School 1

Log Positions

Note:  3-points win,2-points score draw, 0-points for a 0-0 draw

1.       Eletsa Secondary School   - 8pts

2.       Sol Plaatje Secondary School – 8 pts

3.       Gaopalelwe Secondary School – 1 pts

4.       Seiphemelo Secondary School – 1 pts


The Free State provincial finals in the under-15 COPA Coca-Cola football competition take place at the Edenburg Stadium in Edenburg on Saturday, June 30 (kickoff at 9.00am).

This is the eighth of the nine provincial finals, with the nine eventual winners going through to the national finals in Johannesburg from July 12 to 14.

2011 Free State provincial and ultimate national champions, HTS Louis Botha, from the Motheo Region, will be back again this year. The school has been competing in the tournament since 2009 and have reached the provincial finals three times. With the prize money they won last year the school purchased soccer boots and kit as well as training equipment.

Prince Fani, who has a South African Football Association (SAFA) Introductory Football Coaching Certificate and degree in Sports Science, has been head coach at the school for seven years and has worked with teams from Under 10 up to the Under 19.  “COPA Coca-Cola is our favourite tournament and we have done exceptionally well.  This year is different in that it is an Under-15 tournament, but I have faith in my youngsters and believe we could well reach the National Finals again.  I have put in some extra training sessions to prepare them better.”

HTS Louis Botha is a Sports Academy and has produced many sportsmen that have gone on to become professionals such as Alan Donald (cricket).  Football was only introduced to the school more recently and already produced talented players that have joined local Clubs.  Mohau Molefe and Sedilaka Mokone are with the Bloemfontein Celtic (Premier Soccer League) under-19 development team whereas Wandile Tjemolane has joined Roses United (Second Division) and Samkelo Dladla with United Football Club (National First Division). “We have only been playing football for a few years now and we plan to make a huge impact in the Free State by providing skilled and well trained players.”

Key players Fani believes will one day become professionals include: Gareth Pietersen, defender and team captain, who reads the game well and is a good team motivator. Defi Fcholtz(striker) has an eye for goals and makes good runs. Tsietsi Ramosedi (midfielder) makes accurate ball passes, dribbles well  and is a good ball distributor.

Other participating schools are Nkgopolleng High School from Fezile Dabi Region,Concordia High School from Lejweleputswa Region, Tswela Pele ka Thuto High School  and Samuel Johnson High School both from Xhariep Region and Thabo Mofutsanyane Region's representative still to be selected. Kick-off is at 09:00 am at Edenburg Stadium in Edenburg.


The KwaZulu-Natal provincial champions in the Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup competition will be determined this Saturday and Sunday, 30th June – 1st July, when the playoffs are held at the Velden-Vlei Sports Complex in Richards Bay, kicking off at 9am.

The winners and the runners-up on Saturday will go through to the national finals of the competition in Bloemfontein in October.

The 2011 champions, Umqhele Public Secondary School from the Pinetown Region, will be back to defend their title. The school is situated in a township called Cleremont near Durban and this is the sixth time they are participating in the Sanlam Kay Motsepe Schools Cup and the second time they have made it through to the provincial finals.

The R100 000 won last year for being provincial champions was used to install new electrical equipment at the school, purchase six sewing machines for the Consumer Studies students and a perimeter wall was built for security.

Ten members of last year’s team are back again this year. Two of them: Linda Bhengu(striker) and Martin Mthimkhulu(goalkeeper) are part of the AmaZulu Academy and eight play for Fubs Football Club, a local team that is currently number one in the Durban Second Division League. 

Umqhele coach, Phenduka Mkhwanazi, has been coaching the school team for 12 years. He says the tournament really helped the school last year and he would like to win again and use the funds to renovate their training ground. “I am confident that we will perform even better this year because the players are now more experienced and dedicated, which is what I believe is essential in a tournament like this. The opposition will not have it easy against us.”

Mkhwanazi will be looking to striker Sthembiso Sithebe, a member of last year’s team, to get the goals for them. “He is our captain and has an eye for goals,” and midfielder Khumbulani Ndlovu “He is a good dribbler who controls the ball well and creates chances for the strikers,” Mkhwanazi says.

Sthembiso Sithebe says what he has learnt from this tournament is never to underestimate your opponents and where you come from does not determine what you can be.  His dream is to play for Bafana Bafana in the near future like his role model and former student of Umqhele, Thanduyise Khuboni, a regular Bafana Bafana midfielder.

The other schools that will be in action in the finals are: Emxhakeni Combined Primary School (Amajuba Region), Welabasha High School (Empangeni Region), Tshelenkosi Secondary School (Ilembe Region), Lamontville High School (Umlazi Region), Sihle High School (Ugu Region), Mandlezizwe High School (Sisonke Region), Smero High School (Umgungundlovu Region), Ndlangamandla High School (Umzinyathi Region), Umtshezi High School (Uthukela Region), Ezibukweni High School (Umkhanyakude Region) and Mnyayiza High School from Vryheid Region.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


Western Province and the Blue Bulls continued their march towards a place in the prestigious main game of the 2012 Coca-Cola under-13 Craven Week with good wins over the Leopards and Border, respectively, on the second day’s play in Bloemfontein yesterday.

They are two of just five sides who have come through the first two days unbeaten and barring disaster on Thursday, they should meet in the week's unofficial final on Friday.

Western Province beat the Pumas 36-5 on Monday and then beat the Leopards 45-0 on Tuesday.

Their eighthman, Zakareeya Sallie, got a hat-trick of tries and is emerging as one of the most impressive players on view this week. Vian Fourie got two touchdowns, with Jermaine Claasen and Louwrens Kasselman scoring one try each.

Henry Chamberlain added five conversions.

The Blue Bulls were 31-6 winners over Eastern Province on day one and they beat Border 34-10 on day two.

Blue Bulls eighthman Dylan Nysschen also scored three tries. The others were by Charles Goedhals, Johan Mulder and Nicky Janse Van Rensburg. Goedhals and Werner Nel kicked a conversion apiece.

The other teams two come through the first two days unbeaten were the Valke, who beat KwaZulu-Natal on day one and Border yesterday; SWD, who beat Free State and Limpopo; and Griquas who had victories over Namibia and Border Country Districts.

Free State's disappointing week continued. They lost to SWD on day one and were well beaten by KwaZulu-Natal yesterday, going down 26-12. The Golden Lions went down to Eastern Province on day 2, making it two losses out of two for them as well.

Yusuf Jackson, SA Rugby's manager of youth teams and amateur events, has been at the week running an eye over proceedings and he says he is very satisfied with what he has seen.

"Grey College is one of our great rugby institutions and it has been an experience for these young players to run out onto this field," he says. "The facilities here and the organisation of the event have been second to none."

As far as the standard of play is concerned, Jackson says he is more than satisfied with what he has seen. "The teams took some time to settle on day one, and the icy conditions did not help. But day two saw some sparkling rugby and it showed again how much talent we have in this country."

“All Coca-Cola Youth Weeks, of which there are four, are aimed at identifying and nurturing talent within South Africa,” said Coca-Cola SA Marketing Asset Manager, Craig Van Niekerk.  “Seeing players progress through the various Coca-Cola Rugby Youth Weeks is amazing and we are proud to be the sponsor to make this transition possible.”

Wednesday is a rest day at the week. Thursday’s clashes between The Blue Bulls and SWD and Western Province and the Valke are semifinals in all but name, with the winners likely to get the nod for the week’s concluding fixture on Friday.

Thursday's Fixtures.

9.30am Free State v Zimbabwe, 10.20am Pumas v Namibia, 11.10am Border Country v Golden Lions, 12pm Border v Leopards, 12.50pm Griffons v Limpopo, 1.40pm Boland v Eastern Province, 2.30pm Griquas v KwaZulu-Natal, 3.20pm Blue Bulls v SWD, 4.10pm Western Province v Valke.


Eastern Province 12 Golden Lions 7, Griffons 15 Pumas 3, SWD 15 Limpopo 0, Griquas 10 Border Country 0, Valke 8 Boland 7, Western Province 36 Leopards 5, Namibia 36 Zimbabwe 5, KwaZulu-Natal 26 Free State 12.