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- Created on Tuesday, 05 March 2013 09:14
The resounding victory over Wits on Monday was exactly what the doctor ordered - an emphatic win to get beleaguered FNB UP-Tuks back on track in the Varsity Cup.
Getting full points on Monday in the Jukskei River derby against newcomers FNB Wits could well be the fuel for enduring success in the defending champions' remaining two group fixtures.
They take on fellow semifinal contenders FNB UJ on 11 March in Johannesburg and FNB NMMU a week later in Port Elizabeth.
UP-Tuks beat Wits 52-0, thus becoming the first opponents to send the Johannesburg-based side packing without a point on the scoreboard.
To Jono Ross, UP-Tuks' captain, this was the highlight of his team's third win in five matches.
"Giving them 50 points is obviously great, but what makes me even prouder of the boys is that we defended our tryline with tenacity. That is the trademark of a proud and determined team. We can take a lot from this win," said Ross.
Head coach Nollis Marais agreed with Ross.
"We really needed this win. It will do wonders for our momentum and confidence, the two key ingredients necessary for success against our last two opponents in the group phase of the competition.
"Both are away and both will be tough assignments, but that is what makes Varsity Cup rugby great," said Marais.
The big win saw UP-Tuks moving up to second place on the log. They and UJ both have 16 points, but UP-Tuks' better points difference of 66 to 44 is decisive as it may well be as things get even hotter and more contested on the top half of the log.
By Morris Gilbert