Mutual and Federal Premier Interschools: Grey College v Paarl Boys High

Historic Overview: Grey College vs Maritzburg College

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Grey College vs Maritzburg College Historic Overview

14 Aug 2014 • 89 views

Notes and background

On Saturday 16 August a long and memorable rivalry will be continued when Maritzburg College from Pietermaritzburg once again step onto the hallowed turf of Grey College in Bloemfontein. These two schools share a rich history in rugby and played each other on regular basis until the Interschools was discontinued after 2008. Now, in 2014, they once again take up the battle and a great tradition will continue.

These two great schools first met on the rugby field as far back as 1940 when Grey won that encounter 6-0. College had to wait 45 years to avenge that defeat and in 1985 they eventually got that chance. Grey traveled to Pietermaritzburg with 4 SA Schools players in Chet Maherry (Lock), Frans Cronje (Hooker), Buks Steenkamp (Centre) and Henk Prinsloo (Fullback). Prinsloo came with a big reputation and a big boot. Both of these were demonstrated to the College crowd on that day. Grey Old Boy Marius Massyn remembers: “Henk had a fantastic game on fullback. He scored our (Grey’s) first try to go 4-0 up. His name was on everyone’s lips and with his long line kicks he kept driving College back into their own half”. College had two SA Players of their own in Joel Stransky and Shaun Glover plus they had a young Jeremy Thompson who would later represent South Africa during the End of Year Tour in 1996.

Henk Prinsloo – ball in hand against College in 1985 – with Kenny O’Connor as tackler on the left. (Photo courtesy of Kenny O’ Connor :MC 1985)

The famous 1985 match was also a showdown between two of South Africa’s most talented fly halves that both represented South African Schools (Joel Stransky – ’84 SA Schools and Pieter de Haas – ’86 SA Schools Vice-Captain) while Pieter and Jeremy Thompson were matching up as centers a year later in Bloemfontein.

 

 

 

 

Pieter de Haas (left) and Callie Human              Joel Stransky playing for College 1985

Pieter de Haas, the Grey flyhalf recalls: “We arrived in Maritzburg as favorites that dayThey dominated us up front and therefore could put pressure on us the whole time, more pressure than we had at any other time during that year. Joel used this to good affect and we had very little opportunity to attack. The crowd was very intimidating and it was a nail biter right to the end but College deserved that win on the day.”

 

 

College scored two tries to Grey’s one to win a very close fought match 10-4. It was described at the time as one of the best schoolboy matches ever witnessed. Keith Oxlee, ex Springbok flyhalf and Maritzburg College Old Boy, wrote in an article about the match in the local newspaper “The chances of Pietermaritzburg ever being the venue for a rugby test match are unlikely, but there is no doubting the atmosphere was there on Saturday.”

 

The battle continued in 1986 up in Bloemfontein and this time Grey returned to their winning ways and ran out 24-20 winners in another close encounter. The Grey fullback for that match, Ruan van der Merwe, recalls: “We remembered the previous year’s loss and did not want a repeat performance. The first couple of scrums were very even. We struggled up front in ’85, but could match them in 86. We started running the ball wide from early on. In the 7th minute we turned the ball over after a College knock and again moved the ball swiftly down the line for me to open the scoring with the first try.”

Ruan pictured left, in full flight for Grey College circa 1986

Ruan continues: ”Our second try came after some brilliant interplaying between SA Schools centre Buks Steenkamp and winger Jaco Swanepoel (later to become a Grey Coach) which Buks rounded off. With both tries not converted we led 8-0. Jeremy Thompson then showed his brilliance by running in from the halfway line to score for Maritzburg College. They converted and after a penalty for us we led 11-6 at halftime.”

 

 

 

 

Maritzburg College fought back hard in the second half and pounced on a Grey mistake to score and close the score to 11-10.

Ruan remembers: ”We were under pressure from them and I misjudged a good up-and-under from their No 10 and as a result of my mistake, College scored a try to take the lead 16-11. I was determined to rectify that mistake and 3 minutes later, from a scrum in their own 25m area, we ran a dummy move and I scored under the posts! We regained the lead 17-16 after the conversion. We then received a further penalty to put us ahead 20-16. College again pounced on one of our mistakes when a ball popped out from our scrum in our 25m area and their flanker picked it up and drove over. The conversion was missed and we were locked at 20 all with about 10 minutes left. With about 5 minutes left, I stole a ball in a ruck and we moved it down the line for right winger Jan Venter to score in the corner. Conversion missed and we hung on for that 24-20 win!”

 

 

The 5 SA Schools players from Grey College in 1986 (Jaco Swanepoel, Pieter de Haas, Chet Maherry, Andries Truscott and Buks Steenkamp)

Maritzburg College had to wait another 19 years before they could again taste victory against Grey College. In 2005 they won 15-13 in yet another nail biter.

The Grey vs College scores over the years: (Courtesy of Nelio de Sa and Rugby15)

2008

Grey College 72 – 7 Maritzburg College

2007

Grey College 86 – 3 Maritzburg College

2006

Grey College 50 – 3 Maritzburg College

2005

Grey College 13 – 15 Maritzburg College

2004

Grey College 32 – 10 Maritzburg College

2003

Grey College 25 – 10 Maritzburg College

2002

Grey College 32 – 17 Maritzburg College

2001

Grey College 17 – 14 Maritzburg College

2000

Grey College 22 – 11 Maritzburg College

1999

Grey College 22 – 17 Maritzburg College

1998

Grey College 28 – 23 Maritzburg College

1997

Grey College 28 – 16 Maritzburg College

1993

Grey College 32 – 14 Maritzburg College

1992

Grey College 20 – 15 Maritzburg College

1987

Grey College 13 – 12 Maritzburg College

1986

Grey College 24 – 20 Maritzburg College

1985

Grey College 4 – 10 Maritzburg College

1940

Grey College 6 – 0 Maritzburg College

 

2014 Season:

Grey is currently back on top of the school rankings with only one loss and a draw this season. Their most recent outing to Port Elizabeth against Grey High brought their only defeat this season so far. They won tough away games at Affies and Paarl Boys’ this year but the Grey machine is again firing on all cylinders and a combination of a good solid front row, great loose forwards and speedy and skillful backs makes them a formidable unit. Their strength is that they can adapt very quickly to game demands and switch their game plan accordingly. This was illustrated well against Affies when the latter began to dominate the tight phases and Grey took the ball wide as quickly as possible and started playing more with their backs. This resulted in them keeping the scoreboard ticking and Affies could just not catch up to them.

Keep an eye out for Flanker De Wet Bezuidenhout who can steal the milk out of your coffee, so good is he on a loose ball. Captain and 8th man Alex Jonker is a hard-as-nails player and a very astute leader. Scrumhalf Dian Badenhorst, son of former Free State winger Chris Badenhorst, is a livewire No 9 and together with Dwayne Wessels at 10, they make for a very steady halfback combination.

Maritzburg College is also having a decent season and is hovering around the top 10 position on the rankings. They have a very diminutive but skillful halfback pairing in Mac van der Linde and Matt Sieber. Van der Linde lost a kidney as an u/14 rugby player in Grade 8 and did not play for a few years. To be representing his school at 1st team level in 2014 is a huge achievement for the young man.  Winger Xolisa Guma is the only Craven Week player for College, but the way this team performs, you would have thought there should have been a couple more. They have a decent set of forwards that will be able to match Grey all the way. Home ground advantage should favor the boys from Bloem, but with the fighting spirit of College, this will perhaps again be a very close encounter.

 

 

Maritzburg College Profile

Maritzburg College, locally known as only “College”, was founded as the Pietermaritzburg High School in 1863 to accommodate the influx of children arriving at the new city of Pietermaritzburg and its surrounding farmlands within the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands. As the school swelled, city architects were commissioned to build a larger classroom and boarding block, which was completed in 1888 and later became known as “Clark House”, honouring the school’s third headmaster, Mr RD Clark (MA (Oxon)), who is often referred to as “the Father of College”. Clark House is a Pietermaritzburg landmark and carries South Africa’s heritage seal, certifying it as a national monument. A similar honour was bestowed on the school’s Victoria Hall, the building of which was commenced in 1897 (Queen Victoria’s diamond jubilee year) and which served as a British Army hospital from late 1899 until mid-1900 during the Second Boer War.

The school crest is a red shield with a crossed carbine and assegai over the Latin scroll bearing Pro Aris et Focis (For Hearth and Home). Debate has taken place as to the origins of the school’s crest and colours of red, black & white. A popular belief is that they highlight the various skirmishes, battles and wars between the British and the Zulu that took place in the late 19th century, with the colours representing the warring parties (white and black) and the blood that was shed between them (red). As recently as 2005, this issue had not been conclusively settled by the school’s Archives Committee. As an aside, four Old Collegians perished during the famous Battle of Isandhlwana, at which over 1,300 British and colonial troops were slaughtered by the Zulus on 22 January 1879, during the Zulu War. A memorial in honour of those fallen Old Boys was unveiled on the battlefield in 1969.

The impressive Campus of Maritzburg College as seen from the air

 

Rugby at Maritzburg College

Maritzburg College is traditionally the dominant school rugby force in KwaZulu-Natal. Last year they were 150 years old and they celebrated with not one but two rugby festivals. First, the Maritzburg College 150 festival was held at the end of March where some of the top schools like Affies, Grey PE, Queens College, Dale College, Rondebosch Boys and Jeppe Boys participated. They were also awarded the privilege of hosting the 2013 Wildeklawer Top Schools tournament at the end of April that is now widely regarded as the top festival for schools rugby in the country.  The first recorded rugby match in the province of Natal took place in the Market Square of Pietermaritzburg in October 1870. The contestants were Maritzburg College (then known as Pietermaritzburg High School) and Hermannsburg School. Played on a sun-baked, wheel-rutted, gravel surface, the contest lasted for more than three hours and ended in a victory, for the High School, by two goals to nil.

 

The 1897 1st XV

 

The arrival of James Mervyn (Skonk) Nicholson, as a master at Maritzburg College, signalled a revival in the school’s rugby fortunes. From 1948 he coached the First XV for 35 consecutive seasons, until 1982. In 1949 the First XV was unbeaten, as were ten other teams of his, while a further thirteen First XVs during that period lost only one match each. His teams’ record was:

Played Won  Drew  Lost

504      403    49       52

The legendary JM (Skonk) Nicholson

His teams in the 1950s and early 1960s were particularly successful, at one stage losing only five matches in eleven years!

Skonk’s successors were scarcely less successful. The 1985, 1988 and 1995 teams were unbeaten and four other First XVs lost only one match. Since the turn of the new century, College has often found it difficult to match those statistics. The reasons for this are many: the increasing importance placed on sporting success by schools; the greater spread of talent, often owing to lucrative bursaries offered to promising players; the erosion of the rural core of College boarders; and the greatly strengthened fixture list.

The First XV’s record, however, represents only a fraction of the rugby played at Maritzburg College. Every weekend, as many as thirty teams take to the field, playing the game with fierce enthusiasm and pride. The school’s rugby success is therefore built on a very firm and broad foundation.

For many years, Maritzburg College’s rugby has been characterised by the rugged qualities and outstanding support work of its forwards, the hard running and punishing tackling of its backs and an eagerness to move the ball at every reasonable opportunity. Most notable, however, is the fierce determination and spirit typifying College teams and imbuing them with an indomitable will to win.

Maritzburg College’s superbly consistent record, great depth of talent and enviable reputation for a hard but sporting approach to the game have made it, historically, the premier rugby school in KwaZulu-Natal. No one would seriously dispute College’s right to that title.

When a banquet was held in his honour a few years back, Skonk Nicholson was asked to name his College Dream team for the era 1948-1982.

The Skonk Nicholson Dream Team

Back: PJ Lindsay (1977), LM Sharp (1972), K Oxlee (1952)

Centre: JF Eliot (1955), JGM Anderson (1971), OB Taylor (1954), GD Adam (1972), JD McIntosh (1963), IL Smith (1948)

Front: BL Dennison (1973), A van der Watt (1965), DM Anderson (c) (1963), Mr JM Nicholson, CM Jamieson (vc) (1979), BA Sharp (1964), GC de Graaf (1978

Maritzburg College boys have won 22 South African Schools caps, an achievement surpassed by only one South African school.

SA Schools Representatives

1974

MK Thompson
BV White
1976 PJ Lindsay
1977 PJ Lindsay
1978 DJ Mills
1979 CM Jamieson
1984 JT Stransky
1985 SR Glover
1986 JRD Thomson

1987

BW Catterall*
UH Goedeke
DAG Reed
WG Wilson
1989  CD Mayer
1994 WGA Munn
1995 PJ Dixon*
1996 RC Kelly*
1997 RF Linde

2002

PJ Grant
EA Penzhorn
B Squires

*Captained SA Schools.

Old Boy Joel Stransky (1984 & 1985) became the darling of South Africa when he won the 1995 Rugby World Cup for his country with a superbly taken drop goal in extra time of the Final.

Joel Stransky with his most famous of drop goals!

World Cup Rugby Finals and College Old Boys are no stranger to each other, be it in playing capacity or official’s capacity. A career in rugby refereeing which started when he was a spindly 15-year-old on the backfields of Maritzburg College reached its glorious summit when Old Boy Craig Joubert took charge of the Rugby World Cup final between New Zealand and France in 2011.

 

 

 

Craig Joubert with father Des moments before refereeing a school game at College in 1992

Craig at the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

 

List of College Springboks (Test Caps Only)

DebutYear

Player

1913 Eddie Shum
1921 Wally Clarkson
1924 Bill Payn
1924 Bertram van der Plank
1928 Phil Nel
1937 George Van Reenen
1960 Keith Oxlee
1962 Ormy Taylor
1969 Andy van der Watt
1993 Joel Stransky
2001 Butch James
2007 Peter Grant

 

Famous Maritzburg College Springbok Flyhalves

Keith Oxlee Joel Stransky Butch James Peter Grant

A further two players received springbok colours for going on tour, but never played in a test match. Jeremy Thomson (1996) and Pieter Dixon (2000) In addition, several College Old Boys have represented other countries: Hubert Freakes and Geoff Appleford (England), Juan Grobler and Chad Erskine (United States), Brenton Catterall (Zimbabwe), Wim Visser (Italy), Frank Goedeke (Germany) and Andrew Binikos (Cyprus).

GREY COLLEGE – PROFILE

Grey College was founded on 13 October 1855 when Sir George Grey, then Governor of the Cape Colony, paid a visit to the Orange Free State Republic and donated a sum of money towards the establishment of an institution for higher education. The foundation stone was laid by Jacobus Nicolaas Boshoff, the second President of the Orange Free State Republic, on 13 October 1856.

The school was officially opened on 17 January 1859 and the first headmaster was the Reverend Andrew Murray. It is the third-oldest school in South Africa and the oldest north of the Orange River.

Main Building

Afrikaans and English-speaking pupils study under one roof, but each language group is educated in separate classrooms and in its own mother tongue. The school grounds consist of a number of historic buildings, of which five have been declared national monuments. Extensive sport facilities include a recently upgraded Olympic-sized swimming pool, a field hockey astro, a shooting range, a new squash court and several hockey, soccer, cricket and rugby fields. The school also has 16 all-weather tennis courts.

The school celebrated its 150th jubilee during October 2005, when numerous alumni visited their alma mater.

Reunion Hall

 

The unique Grey Handshake

According to the late Japie Steyl, school captain in 1927, the Grey handshake originated in 1922 and became general practice in 1924. In 1565 the king of France, Charles IX ordained that each master knife maker affix an emblem on the blade of his knives in order to guarantee the originality and quality of his workmanship. Master knife maker Joseph Opinel chose as his emblem the Crown Hand: the right hand, called the benevolent hand, with three fingers raised and two fingers tucked in and a crown under the hand. This is depicted on the coat of arms of the village of St. Jean-de-Maurienne.

Since the 6th century, the village cathedral had a shrine containing three fingers of the hand of Saint John the Baptist. These fingers were brought back from Alexandria in Egypt by Thécle, a young girl of the village. The crown is an indication that the person was someone of royalty. It is possible that a knife or sword, with the Opinel emblem, could have been brought to Bloemfontein by a soldier serving in France during the First World War.

Grey College has served Bloemfontein, the Free State, South Africa and the world well over the past 150 years. Grey College has been able to make adjustments and remain relevant in a changing environment in which it has developed, grown and excelled. The brand is known and revered throughout South Africa and even internationally and the products of the school make a positive difference wherever they are. Parallel medium education, tolerance, respect for others and loyalty to the school are not only traditions, but firm foundations in a global village. Grey College is structured on these foundations and it is constantly adapting to new developments. The wave of change washing over our country confirms the value of Grey College’s traditions.

Grey College has produced 43 capped Springbok rugby players and 46 in total. Since WW II it has produced more Springbok players than any other school in SA.

List of Grey Springboks: (Courtesy of Nelio de Sa and Rugby15)

Herman Dirk “Broekie” van Broekhuizen (1896)

Evelyn Edgar “Boetie” McHardy (1912)

Sarel Strauss (1921)

Kalfie Martin (1937)

Louis Babrow (1937)

Piet de Wet (1938)

Popeye Strydom (1955)

John Wessels (1965)

Johan Spies (1970)

Dawie Snyman (1972)

Morné du Plessis (1971)

Jackie Snyman (1974)

Theuns Stofberg (1976)

Robbie Blair (1977)

Jaco Reinach (1986)

Helgard Muller (1986)

Johan Styger (1992)

Andries Truscott (1992)

Pieter Muller (1992)

Heinrich Füls (1992)

Ruben Kruger (1993)

Ollie le Roux (1994)

Naka Drotské (1993)

Werner Swanepoel (1997)

Charl Marais (1999)

CJ van der Linde (2002)

Gerrie Britz (2004)

Ruan Pienaar (2006)

Francois Steyn (2006)

Wian du Preez (2009)

Jannie du Plessis (2007)

Bismarck du Plessis (2007)

Tiaan Liebenberg (2007 – capped 2012)

Heinrich Brüssow (2008)

Adriaan Strauss (2008)

Flip van der Merwe (2010)

Deon Stegmann (2010)

Coenie Oosthuizen (2012)

Andries Strauss (2010)

Johan Goosen (2012)

Jan Serfontein (2013)

Piet van Zyl (2013)

Marcel vd Merwe (2014)

In 2010 season they had eight representatives in the Springbok squad, Deon Stegmann, Adriaan Strauss, CJ van Niekerk, Jannie Du Plessis, Bismarck Du Plessis, Flip vd Merwe, Ruan Pienaar en Franscois Steyn.

Grey College had six representatives in the 2011 Rugby World Cup Springbok team in New Zealand – Jannie du Plessis, Bismarck du Plessis, Frans Steyn, Ruan Pienaar, Heinrich Brussow, and CJ van der Linde.

A new record was established in 2013 when Grey College had 10 representatives in the bigger Springbok squad.  They were, Jannie Du Plessis, Bismarck Du Plessis, Adriaan Strauss, Flip vd Merwe, Coenie Oosthuizen, Ruan Pienaar, Jan Serfontein, Pieter Labuschagne, Robert Ebersohn and Piet van Zyl. A record that will surely not be broken by any other school except perhaps Grey itself!

 

The Preview Show will start airing on Wednesday evening, 13 July 2014 at 5.30pm on SuperSport 1

Schedule Date

Series

Season

Episode

Schedule Time

Schedule End Time

Channel

Status

13-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

17:30

17:45

SuperSport One P

13-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

17:30

17:45

SuperSport One Africa P

13-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

22:45

23:00

SuperSport One R

13-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

22:45

23:00

SuperSport One Africa R

14-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

07:30

07:45

SuperSport Select SA R

14-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

13:30

13:45

SuperSport One Africa R

14-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

13:30

13:45

SuperSport One R

14-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

17:30

17:45

SuperSport Select SA R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

01:00

01:15

SuperSport Eight R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

04:30

04:45

SuperSport One R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

04:30

04:45

SuperSport One Africa R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

11:40

11:55

SuperSport Eight R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

13:40

13:55

SuperSport One Africa R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

13:40

13:55

SuperSport One R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

13:40

13:55

SuperSport CSN R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

15:00

15:15

SuperSport Select SA R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

18:45

19:00

SuperSport One Africa R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

18:45

19:00

SuperSport One R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

18:45

19:00

SuperSport CSN R

15-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

22:45

23:00

SuperSport Eight R

16-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

00:10

00:25

SuperSport One R

16-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

00:10

00:25

SuperSport One Africa R

16-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

03:15

03:30

SuperSport Eight R

16-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

10:45

11:00

SuperSport One Africa R

16-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

10:45

11:00

SuperSport CSN R

16-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10 – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

10:45

11:00

SuperSport One R
                 

16-Aug-14

Mutual & Federal Premier Interschools

2014

Eps. 10A – Grey Bloem vs Maritzburg College

14:00

14:05

SuperSport Select SA P  

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