Wednesday Column

After a weekend break from club rugby, Jonsson College Rovers will go into the second half of the Fidelity Security Premier Division competition with an eight point cushion on the log table over second placed Acer Durban Collegians who do however have a game in hand.

Rovers, who meet Thanda ZRA Zululand Rhinos on Saturday, will be honouring three of their stalwarts Dave Henry, Peter Hatchwell an All Black trialist and Peter Broome by inducting them onto the Berea Rovers Hall of Fame after the game against the club from Empangeni who have reciprocity with the 2010 Moor Cup champions. Henry is arguably one of the club's finest skippers who between him, Hatchwell and Terry Mehrtens, a Junior All Black, guided the club's memorable winning moments through that golden era leading into the early seventies, although all would agree it was a remarkable all round team effort in those days. “Certainly with the likes of Dave ‘Shorts’ Hooper, Piet de Jager, Dennis Millard, the Terry Lloyd twins Richard and Michael, Peter Combrink and many others, you weren’t going to lose too many games,” Henry quipped.

Broome who was Chairman after taking over from the late Ferdie Nel, a cousin of the legendary Philip Nel, during that period also made a huge contribution to the club at the time. The three recipients will join Nel, former Springbok skipper, the late great Roy Dryburgh, Peter Malan, legendary Natal skipper Peter Taylor, that man for all seasons Peter Malan, possibly the most loyal Rover of all time the late big George Dunbar and Dr. Nic Labuschagne, on the honours board.

Rovers go into the game against Rhinos on a sad note however after hearing of the passing of long time employee Elvis Chetty who became an institution at the club over the years. He started at the club in the seventies and was the chef for over two decades. The members, management and staff together with members from all the visiting clubs that were looked after by him on match days over the years offer his family their sincere condolences at their sad loss.

In the other games, Collegians host Goss and Balfe Crusaders, Bluff SuperSpar travel to the capital to meet their hosts FNB UKZN Maritzburg and Varsity College Old Boys visit Sydenham to play Fidelity Security Jaguars.

In the Ebbo Bastard Cup regional competition, Durban Rugby Sub-Union beat Lammergeyer 26-18 and Midlands beat Southern Natal 29-19 and in the Under 20 Philip Nel Cup competition Midlands beat Southern Natal 24-9.

Up at Loftus, the KZN Duikers beat the Loftus 200 team 47-45 after leading 30-10 at the break in the curtain raiser to the Vodacom Super Rugby clash between The Sharks and Bulls. The Loftus 200 club is made up of ex Blue Bulls players of which former Blue Bulls player, Natal and Springbok captain Wynand Claassen is the current Chairman. Duikers, although going into the second half in a commanding lead, had to come from behind after a magnificent come-back by their Northern Transvaal hosts. The Loftus 200 side were up 45-44 in the dying moments of the game which in the end was played in the true spirit of Barbarians rugby only for the KZN side to squeeze home a victory almost on time with a last gasp penalty.

- Jos Robson