It was certainly good to have been able to participate in the St Stithians Rugby Festival again this year. College came away from the festival unbeaten, with wins against St Albans College, Wynberg Boys High School and the hosts St Stithians College.
After a two-day camp, the College 1st XV opened their participation at the festival with a 29-15 win over St Albans. The game was close in the first half, but opened up in the second with College scoring a number of good tries. Try scorers on the day were Siphesihle Madlala, Myles Boden, Ayomideji Israel-Akinbo, Joe Bennie and Luke Rowley.
The second game of the festival was always going to be the toughest fixture for the College 1st XV. Wynberg came into the game full of confidence and it took a very determined and courageous defensive effort from College to ensure a nail biting 13-12 victory. Joe Bennie scored the two College tries on the day.
In the last game of the festival the hosts, St Stithians, were never in the game after an early onslaught from College, who raced into a 38-0 lead by half time. Tries came from Ayomideji Israel-Akinbo, Jacques Cloete, Nicholas Lane, Myles Boden, Daniel Hickey and Mlibo Xotyeni. The final result was a pleasing 50-7 win which ended off what was a very successful week in Johannesburg for the 1st XV.
At the Selborne Festival in the last weekend of the holidays, College played two fixtures, one against Rondebosch Boys High School and another against Brandwag. The two weeks’ break before playing Rondebosch showed and College went down 47-7 in what was ultimately a disappointing performance on the day. The try scorer for College was Myles Boden.
Against a physical and motivated Brandwag team College were far better than in their previous fixture but ultimately went down 17-12. Tries from Siphesihle Madlala and Nicholas Lane saw the two teams deadlocked at 12-12 going into the last ten minutes of the game but a series of penalties saw Brandwag get the try they needed to secure the victory.
The five games over the course of the holidays have seen many important lessons learned and the College 1st XV can look forward positively as they move into the domestic season ahead.