- They have talent by the bucket-load
Many who’ve seen the youngsters out on the field this season will attest to this. Despite winning only one of their four Young Guns fixtures this year, there is no doubting the quality of their side. A testament to this is the fact that multiple players have been called up from the under-20 side to play for the first team, meaning that the FNB Ikey Tigers were amongst those with the youngest squads in this year’s FNB Varsity Cup presented by Steinhoff International. Furthermore, the same players in the under-20 side that went undefeated for the entirety of their domestic season last year are still plying their trade for FNB UCT, meaning that the club still boasts some great young talent.
- Win or lose, they do it as a team
Since the under-20 side broke away from the first team back in January to focus on their own preseason regime, coach Tom Dawson-Squibb and the training staff have been teaching the young men about the value of teamwork. It has definitely paid off, as the FNB UCT Young Guns resemble a united team when they’re on the field. Celebrating tries, collectively applauding the efforts of their teammates and even defending each other when any unsavoury scuffles break out: the boys in stripes seem to have grasped the importance of being a team before anything else.
- The future of the FNB Ikey Tigers is in good hands
Coupling the team mentality with the talent on display suggests that the future is bright for the teams that come out of the rugby system at FNB UCT. Given time, these players will grow and gain experience, and for those who end up gracing the field with the first team, the mixture of their youth and the experience of the older heads in the team could prove to be a lethal combination. While this season may not have been all that both the under-20 and the first team would have hoped it would be, the ingredients for the FNB Ikey Tiger’s rise back to the top are all there, waiting to be used.
By Wessley Thring