Changes in 2015 Vodacom Cup

Feb 9 • General News, Vodacom Cup • 2115 Views • Comments Off on Changes in 2015 Vodacom Cup

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The South African Rugby Union (SARU) last week announced their final plans for the 2015 Vodacom Cup series. According to their CEO, Jurie Roux, it’s back to a sixteen team series, eight teams per region, north and south.

 

One of the biggest changes is that the defending champions, GWK Griquas will be heading up a strong South Section after the Tusker Simba XV withdrew from the series due to financial problems. Added value has been given due to the fact that the Welwitschias from Namibia is back in the competition, since 2011 and will use the competition for their World Cup preperations.

 

After being in the Northern section for several years, the Kimberley boys will now play pool games against the DHL Western Province, Boland Cavaliers, Border Bulldogs, Cell C Sharks XV, EP Kings, SWD Eagles and Toyota Free State XV.

 

The Steval Pumas are in the North Section with the Assupol Limpopo Blue Bulls, Down Touch Griffons, Leopards XV, Xerox Golden Lions, Valke, Vodacom Blue Bulls and Welwitschias from Namibia. According to Roux special arrangements and agreements were set in place for the Namibians to play all seven pool matches in Windhoek.

 

Pieter Burger, Managing Director of the Mpumalanga Rugby (PTY) Ltd said that this change in the competition leaves the Steval Pumas with two back-to-back bye weekends, seeing that the match in Kimberley would have been the last pool game before the play-offs.

 

“It’s a pity that the Tusker Simba XV withdrew, as this would have meant a great deal for rugby development across board, but on the positive side the two off weekends leaves us enough time to recover injured players, should the Steval Pumas make the play-offs. The coaching staff must just use this time to their advantage and maintain focus which can easily be lost as a result of two non-playing weekends,” he said.

 

The series kicks off on the weekend of 6 March, with the final scheduled for the end of May. For the Steval Pumas, their campaign starts with an encounter against the Down Touch Griffons, here in Nelspruit.

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