|Most recent season or competition:
2014 Varsity Rugby
The current FNB Varsity Cup logo
|No. of teams||8 (Cup)
|Most recent champion(s)||UCT Ikey Tigers (2nd title)|
|Most titles||Maties (3)|
|Sponsor(s)||First National Bank
Varsity Rugby is a series of South African rugby union competitions that involve the top rugby playing universities in the country.
- 1 History
- 2 Current Teams
- 3 Format
- 4 Player eligibility
- 5 Season Summaries
- 6 Overall Record
- 7 Controversies
- 8 Notable Players and Coaches
- 9 Sponsors
- 10 External links
- 11 References
The Varsity Cup tournament was founded in 2008, featuring the rugby teams of eight universities. At the same time, the Koshuis Rugby Championships was also launched. This is a competition where each of the eight universities is represented by the "koshuis" (university residence) that won their internal league.
In 2011, a second tier was added below the Varsity Cup tournament, called the Varsity Shield, which featured the rugby teams of a further five universities.
In 2012, an Under-20 competition was also added, called the Young Guns. The eight teams that took part in the first four editions of the Varsity Cup entered teams in this competition.
The Varsity Rugby competitions also implement rules which help to ensure that the majority of the players are bona fide students of the relevant universities.
The eight teams currently competing in the Varsity Cup are:
|CUT Ixias||Central University of Technology||CUT Stadium, Bloemfontein|
|Maties||Stellenbosch University||Danie Craven Stadium, Stellenbosch|
|NMMU Madibaz||Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University||NMMU Stadium, Port Elizabeth|
|NWU-Pukke||North-West University||Fanie du Toit Stadium, Potchefstroom|
|UCT Ikey Tigers||University of Cape Town||UCT Rugby Fields, Cape Town|
|UFS Shimlas||University of the Free State||Shimla Park, Bloemfontein|
|UJ||University of Johannesburg||UJ Stadium, Johannesburg|
|UP-Tuks||University of Pretoria||LC de Villiers Stadium, Pretoria|
The five teams currently competing in the Varsity Shield are:
|TUT Vikings||Tshwane University of Technology||TUT Stadium, Pretoria|
|UFH Blues||University of Fort Hare||Davidson Rugby Field, Alice|
|UKZN Impi||University of KwaZulu-Natal||Peter Booysen Sports Park, Pietermaritzburg|
|UWC||University of the Western Cape||UWC Sport Stadium, Cape Town|
|Wits||University of the Witwatersrand||Wits Rugby Stadium, Johannesburg|
The eight Varsity Cup teams will each enter a Young Guns (Under-20) team.
Koshuis Rugby Championships
The eight Varsity Cup teams will each enter a Koshuis Rugby team.
The tournament begins with a round robin stage, in which all teams play each other once. The league scoring system follows that of Super Rugby in which 4 points are awarded for a win, and 2 points for a draw. Teams may also be awarded bonus points for either scoring 4 tries in a game, or for losing within 7 points of their opponents. At the end of the round robin stage, the top 4 teams go to the knockout stage with the top 2 teams being awarded home semi-finals.
In the 2012 season, Varsity Cup and Shield sides were required to have 16 full-time students in their 23 man squads. The Young Guns and Koshuis competitions were restricted to full-time students only.
In the 2013 season, Varsity Cup teams were required to have 18 full-time students in their 23 man squads. In addition, students needed to have passed at least 30% of their previous year's courses, and all players, even non-students, must have finished high school.
From the 2014 season, Varsity Cup teams were required to have 20 full-time students in their 23 man squads. It is intended that 2014 will be the last year in which non-students will be used. A 23 man squad of full-time students has been proposed from 2015 onwards.
|2008||Maties||16–10||UCT Ikey Tigers||NWU-Pukke
|2009||Maties||11–6||NWU-Pukke||UCT Ikey Tigers
|2010||Maties||17–14||UCT Ikey Tigers||NWU-Pukke
|2011||UCT Ikey Tigers||26–16||UP-Tuks||UFS Shimlas
|2014||UCT Ikey Tigers||39-33||NWU-Pukke||Maties
|2014||CUT Ixias||35–26||UKZN Impi||N/A||CUT Ixias|
|2012||UP Tuks Young Guns||35–26||Maties Juniors||NWU Pukke Young Guns
UFS Shimlas Young Guns
|2013||UP Tuks Young Guns||50–21||Maties Juniors||UCT Trojans
UFS Shimlas Young Guns
|2014||UFS Shimlas Young Guns||17–171||UP Tuks Young Guns||UJ Young Guns
Koshuis Rugby Championships
|2008||Dagbreek, Maties||22–14||Maroela, UP-Tuks||Dromedaris, UJ
|2009||Huis Armentum, UFS Shimlas||30–16||Dromedaris, UJ||Barbarians, NMMU Madibaz
|2010||Vishuis, UFS Shimlas||22–7||Dagbreek, Maties||Maroela, UP-Tuks
|2011||Patria, NWU-Pukke||21–0||Simonsberg, Maties||Northernz, NMMU Madibaz
Tornadoes, UCT Ikey Tigers
|2012||Vishuis, UFS Shimlas||44–26||Dagbreek, Maties||Cobras, UCT Ikey Tigers
|2013||Vishuis, UFS Shimlas||20–16||Villagers, NWU-Pukke||Bastion, UJ
|2014||Heimat, UFS Shimlas||20–12||Patria, NWU-Pukke||Cobras, UCT Ikey Tigers
|2||UCT Ikey Tigers||2||2||1|
The Rugby Transformation Coalition has called for a boycott of the Varsity Cup. This is due to the exclusion of formerly black universities, and the low representation of black players.
No private universities have been allowed to compete in the tournament, leading to complaints from Varsity College.
Notable Players and Coaches
- Demetri Catrakilis - 2011 UCT flyhalf. Played for Western Province in the Currie Cup, now playing for the Kings
- Jake White - former UCT Assistant Coach. Former Springbok National Coach
- Bobby Skinstad - former Stienhoff Simonsberg Captain, former UCT Assistant Coach. Former Springbok loose forward
- Juan de Jongh - former Maties center. First ever Varsity Cup player to play for the Springboks
- Joe Pietersen - 2008 Maties Fullback. Now fullback for the Super Rugby side the Stormers
- JJ Gagiano - UCT Captain. Member of the USA National Team the US Eagles
- Mathew Turner - 2008 UCT wing. Now a member of the Bristol team in the Guinness Premiership as well as the England Sevens team
- Kyle Brown - 2008 UCT player. Now a member of the Springbok Sevens team
- Paul Bosch - 2008 Pukke Center. Now in the Western Province squad
- Robert Ebersohn - 2008 Shimlas Center. Currently a member of the Cheetahs Super Rugby team. Former member of the Springbok Sevens team.
- Shane van der Merwe - 2008 Tuks centre. Now playing for Bath in the UK
- Gerhard van den Heever - Tuks Wing. Now playing for Stormers in Super Rugby, former Bulls player.
- Earl Lewis - 2009 UJ player. Now playing for the Golden Lions in the Currie Cup
- Rudy Joubert - Pukke Head Coach. Springbok Technical Advisor in 1995 Rugby World Cup
- Eben Etzebeth - 2011 Ikeys Lock. Now playing for the Stormers. Became a Springbok in June 2012.
The tournament is sponsored by:
- "Varsity Cup bigger and better". sport24.co.za. 2012-01-24. Retrieved 2012-01-25.
- "VC Competition Rules 2012". varsitycup.co.za. Retrieved 2012-02-06.
- "Varsity cheat claims cleared up". Sport24. 19 March 2013. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
- "Varsity Cup values restored". SA Rugby Magazine. 21 January 2013. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
- "Varsity Cup eyeing full student ‘quota’". SA Rugby Magazine. 20 January 2013. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
- "Threats of Varsity Cup boycott". City Press. 12 May 2013. Retrieved 5 December 2013.
- "Rugby that Rocks, or Pops?". Rugga World. 21 February 2013. Retrieved 5 December 2013.
- "Varsity Cup High Drama!". Front Row Grunt. 20 March 2012. Retrieved 5 December 2013.
- "Tuks sidestep punishment again after player eligibility "oversight"". Die Matie. 20 March 2013. Retrieved 5 December 2013.
- "SMS campaign launched against Varsity Cup entrance fees". AfriForum Youth. 25 February 2013. Retrieved 21 January 2014.
- "No Varsity Cup/Shield for Durban until 2015". Durban Collegians. Retrieved 21 January 2014.