SA Home Loans and Durban Collegians Join Hands

Durban Collegians have welcomed a generous new sponsorship from SA Home Loans for the next three years and the club will now be known as the SA Home Loans Durban Collegians.

Financial support of Club Rugby is crucial to the existence and sustainability of Club Rugby and sponsorships of this nature help to keep clubs alive, assisting in the development and production of top quality players and administrators.

This support from SA Home Loans allows Durban Collegians to give players and coaches a competitive and aspirational platform from which to reach their goals.

"We get visibility, branding and that feel-good factor," said SA Home Loans CEO Kevin Penwarden.

SA Home Loans has been voted "Best in Home Loans" every year in the Independent Newspapers "Your Choice" awards since 2007. The synergy between SA Home Loans and Durban Collegians can only lead to future success for arguably KZN's most successful club historically.

SA Home Loans was launched to the South African public as the first non-bank mortgage lender, offering discounted mortgage rates to the consumer. This initial approach was to stand them in good stead because the company took-off shortly thereafter and is today the 5th biggest home loan lender in South Africa. SA Home Loans is now recognised as one of the prime movers in the Mortgage Lending industry and is the leader in the specialised field of raising asset-backed funding from the debt capital markets.

The Durban Collegians Rugby Football Club, a club rich in heritage and arguably the most successful rugby club in KZNRU club rugby history - boasting of two great Springbok captains in Tommy Bedford (69) and Wynand Claassen (81) - is steeped in history, having survived the Boer War and the two Great World Wars. So it wasn't surprising that SA Home Loans have chosen to align themselves with the great old club.

Originally known as the Old Collegians Rugby Football Club, the now famous club was formed at a meeting in the Princess Cafe on 14 March 1906, with the original objective of forming a club for members of society who had passed through any College or public school in South Africa. As time went by, this date was later to show just how important it would prove to be for the KZNRU as we know it today, as Collegians were to go on to make a huge contribution to the game in the province - not only on the field of play - but also with the important administration of the sport.

Dr. Addison became the club's first President with an impressive list of deputies in A. McWilliam, G.W. Young, B.Stewart, D. Taylor, G.C. Cowie, J.Watt and J. Watt. It's interesting to note that the war years didn't ever stop the running of the club, with L.J. Molyneux replacing Club Secretary and Treasurer McWilliam when he was away on military service. The first committee comprised of Messrs Venning, Snyman and Fairbairn, with the original playing strip on the jerseys black and white with white shorts, , the kit originally being ordered from England.

So began the long and illustrious history of the 107 year old club, which won their first piece of silverware a year later, securing the Murray Cup for the first time in 1907 before winning it again in 1912 and 1914. Amazingly, in the club's early years they ran into major problems not of their own making but because of the troubled times in the hinterland with the Boer War, they lost many of their key players at the time which caused them to withdraw from other competitions like the Wylie Cup as there were no indications whether players would be back in time for the season's end. The fact that they still managed to win the Murray Cup was an enormous achievement in itself and perhaps one of the reasons why Collegians to this day has had that ability to survive the test of time with the astonishing blood and guts call to SOB. And now to back them up and lend a helping hand for a brighter future is SA Home Loans.

The club, now playing in their proud strip of Black and Red, have gone on to win the Murray Cup and the Moor Cup on more occasions than any other club in the province and still hold the record for 17 straight Moor Cup titles from 1968 to 1987, sharing it once with Glenwood Old Boys in 1984 - indeed a remarkable record which will take some beating.

There have been great administrators passing through the hallowed halls of the grand old club over the years, none more so than the late Basil Medway, who became an icon in the game not only locally but nationally and globally as well. There was also Brian Irvine, who captained the Junior Springboks (60 and 65) in his playing days, and Keith Parkinson. Brian van Zyl, the current CEO of the Sharks, has also made a huge contribution to the game.

With their new found sponsors in SA Home Loans, the club is sure to survive and grow in stature. Who can forget the words of the late great Peter Taylor, who captained Rovers to a rare victory over Collegians: "When you beat Collegians, cherish the moment as it doesn't happen that often"?

But that was the spirit and camaraderie of the club game in those far away days. Long may SA Home Loans Collegians grow and prosper with their new sponsors.