The FNB CUT Ixias desperately need a win in the 2017 FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International.
After losing their first three matches in consecutive weeks, the FNB Ixias are in desperate need to win their first match of the current campaign, to restore confidence in themselves after all the hard work they put in during the pre-season.
“We are just about there, where all our preparations need to fall into place,” said coach Tiaan Liebenberg. “We simply need to put those final pieces of our game plan together on the field, for our efforts to fall into place and put us up there where we firmly believe we belong – on the winning end of a brutal Varsity Cup encounter.”
Make no mistake, FNB UJ has not had the best of starts to the season, but they will have their tails up after the unexpected and narrow victory over the FNB Tuks side last Monday.
“There are no easy matches in the Varsity Cup and this season the race is still open for at least six teams for a semi-final spot. We need to be on our A-game against the black jerseys next week if we have any hope of getting away from the log bottom,” said FNB Ixias manager and former coach, Skillie Bester.
On the matter of injuries, the FNB Ixias will welcome back a few of their eight injured players from the first two matches.
“We are blessed not to have had many serious injuries in our last match against the Shimlas,” Liebenberg added.
Stefan Jacobs did, however, injure his shoulder, which is a major concern for the FNB Ixias, resulting in two hookers being sidelined currently.
With only eight matches for each team, and three losses in their first three matches, it is crucial for the FNB Ixias to get this home win under the belt against FNB UJ.
It certainly won’t be easy, but FNB CUT urgently need a win, and a solid performance. A tough away match against FNB UP-Tuks is waiting the following week.
The FNB CUT Ixias team to face FNB UJ: 15. Darren Adonis, 14. Olwethu Ndakisa, 13. Ruan Wasserman, 12. Johan Nel, 11. Waldo Putter, 10. Martin Jacobs, 9. Ruben Heymans, 8. Stefan Kruger, 7. Vincent Maruping, 6. Dean Rossouw (Capt), 5. Kian Skippers, 4. André Venter, 3. Henco Smit, 2. Bester Olivier, 1. Jean Volkwyn.
Replacements: 16. Kyle Ess, 17. Kabous van Schalkwyk, 18. Chrisjan du Toit, 19. Burger van Niekerk, 20. Dean Jacobs, 21. Dian Dry, 22. Denver Klue and 23. Brendan Verster.
By Carel Korff