SA Home Loans Durban Collegians and College Rovers find themselves in three knockout finals this coming weekend after last Saturdays semi- finals day at the home of Bidvest Insurance Crusaders Rugby Club in Ranleigh Crescent Durban North.
The Murray Cup presented by HiTech Ink, Cell C and Castle Lager produced some hugely entertaining running rugby in both the semi-finals with College Rovers looking sublime producing some of their best rugby this season in their runaway 65-20 victory over Varsity College.
Varsity College took an early 6-0 lead but that was short lived with Rovers taking charge of proceedings from then on. Leading 27-6 at half time Rovers looked fluid and dangerous every time they went on attack and looked polished running in 10 tries with hooker Juandre Jacobs leading the charge with three bullocking tries.
It was the Rovers backs that impressed with some wonderful moves, their remaining tries going to centre Grant Rattray who crossed for two, scrumhalf Grant Williams, wing Mark Richards replacement Ricky Bamber, prop Thinus Volker and Andre Coetzee with fullback Gavin Scott and flyhalf Mondi Nkosi sharing the kicks.
Varsity College deserve Credit for not lying down and did end in a flourish scoring two good tries through prop Rogers Zondi and flank Johannes Grobler with Josh Fourie at flyhalf kicking the balance.
Durban Collegians also had a runaway victory beating eThekwini Refractories Amanzimtoti 44-12 and looked just as dangerous and in tune as Rovers. Opening with a flourish they scored three tries in quick session to be up 17-3 in the first 10 minutes. Toti made a bold attempt to come back and were still in the game at halftime with Collegians 24-12 up.
However Collegians scored another 20 points unanswered points in the second half and never looked in any trouble. One thing is for certain we can expect a thrilling final this coming Saturday and with a big crowd expected be prepared for yet another true classic Murray Cup Final clash which is sure to be an entertaining affair that could once again see the game go either way.
It was the Junior Murray Cup semi final however between the South Section sides Jaguar Land Rover Durban Hillcrest that produced the most enthralling match of the day with the Villagers edging out Durban Mets 17-12 with Mets doing all the attacking in the dying moments of the game. It was anyone’s game in the last quarter and Durban Mets deserve huge credit for making a game of it while one has to also admire Hillcrest for holding on desperately until the final whistle.
Hillcrest will now face the North Section winners Vryheid again after they beat Newcastle Highlanders 20-15 in another classic close encounter.
Rovers and Collegians will also face each other in the Peter Taylor Trophy final after Rovers squeaked home 25-20 against Varsity College and Collegians had a close call narrowly beating Toti 17-10.
The day started with College Rovers beating FNB UKZN Impi 33-12 in the first of the Basil Medway Under 20 ‘A’ Knockout Trophy semi-finals and will meet Durban Collegians in the final after they beat Varsity College 22-12.
In the Third Division Findlay Cup Ladysmith Bulldogs beat Hluhluwe 44-13 and will go on to play Kokstad in their final. This will bring the oldest club in KZN to Durban. Founded in 1890 it will certainly be a very special moment for the side affectionately known as The Blacks from East Griqualand