Fort Hare Dethrones Maties to Lift 2024 Varsity Rugby Cup

The University of Fort Hare rocked Pretoria when they dethroned defending champions Maties to be crowned the 2024 FNB Varsity Cup Women’s champions, beating the Maroon Machine 37-31 in a pulsating final at the Tuks Stadium in Tshwane, Gauteng, on Friday, 26 April, 2024. Photo: SA Rugby

The University of Fort Hare rocked Pretoria when they dethroned defending champions Maties to be crowned the 2024 FNB Varsity Cup Women’s champions, beating the Maroon Machine 37-31 in a pulsating final at the Tuks Stadium in Tshwane, Gauteng, on Friday, 26 April, 2024.

The Eastern Cape ladies put their hands up early in the match when Sivuyiseko Makhomazi broke the Maties’ defence with a sensational run from inside her own half and offloaded to Purity Ngogodo, who easily flew over the try line.  

Maties were then reduced to 14 players when Zelmari Pretorius was sent to the sin bin for a high tackle. UFH dominated the period and were awarded a try when scrumhalf Sindisiwe Mbonja sneaked past her opponents. They proved relentless as they scored another point-of-origin try with a brilliant run from Etandwa Marawu. 

Maties started fighting back to remain in contention and were awarded a try when Elmé Kruger powered over and converted her own try. UFH led 25-7 at half-time.

The team talk in the Maties dressing must have been intense as Johann Zeier’s troops returned from the break with a try, in the form of Kruger completing her brace. UFH however hit back with another try from Mbonja.

It remained an intense clash with Maties scoring back-to-back tries through Ankia Viljeon and Zelmari Pretorius that reduced the deficit to just six points. 

Zintle Mkhokheli then dotted down for UFH before Kruger secured her hat-trick for Maties with five minutes to left play. It was however too late with UFH triumphantly claiming the 2024 title.  

Final of the 2024 FNB Varsity Cup at the Tuks Stadium in Pretoria, Gauteng, on Friday, 26 April, 2024

Scorers:

FNB UFH 37 (25) – Tries: Purity Ngogodo, Sindisiwe Mbonja (2), Etandwa Marawu, Zintle Mkhokeli
Conversions: Zanele Touto (4) 

FNB Maties 31 (7) – Tries: Elmé Kruger (3), Ankia Viljoen, Zelmari Pretorius
Conversions: Elmé Kruger (3) 

FNB Player That Rocks: Sindisiwe Mbonja (FNB UFH) 

FNB University of Fort Hare

Mila Wawa
Zintle Mkhokeli
Nombuyekezo Mdliki
Purity Siphosethu Ngogodo
Sinoyolo Best
Thokozani Sikela
Sivuyiseko Makhomazi
Lilitha Trustlord Ngwenze
Sindisiwe Mbonja
Okuhle Njemla
Etandwa Marawu
Inga Qogi
Siphesihle Hlangani
Adaoraa Philemina Somlenze
Zanele Touto

FNB University of Stellenbosch

Vunene Veron Miyambo
Lungelo Mpumelelo Hope Mvelase
Erin Chenowyth Bond
Sesethu Ntamnani
Danai Makanaka Makota
Stefney-Rose de Vries
Elizabeth Mari Slabbert
Ankia Viljoen
Taliyah Deanna Bussack
Elmé Kruger
Kayleen Christelle Muggels
Ropafadzo Valerie Madyah
Zelmari Pretorius
Whitney Jolene Gordon
Emma Olivier 


Original Copy: Rugby SA, with editing by gsport

Photo Caption: The University of Fort Hare rocked Pretoria when they dethroned defending champions Maties to be crowned the 2024 FNB Varsity Cup Women’s champions, beating the Maroon Machine 37-31 in a pulsating final at the Tuks Stadium in Tshwane, Gauteng, on Friday, 26 April, 2024. Photo: SA Rugby

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