In a battle of the Varsity Football debutants, the Central University of Technology (CUT) take on the University of Fort Hare (UFH) in what is set to be an unpredictable affair.
Despite both teams being relatively unknown entities, the mood in the visitors’ camp is an overly jovial one. Although the Bloemfontein side would have relished the opportunity to begin their campaign at home, they will not hold back in their encounter in Alice.
“We will play our normal game,” said assistant coach Junior Leeuw. “We will not be too open but we will play our attractive football.” Without giving too much information regarding possible strategies, captain Bongani Matsemela simply described their approach to the opener as ‘flexible’. Indeed, they will require more flexibility during the tournament if they are to avoid more injuries.
The three injuries they have in their ranks should not worry them too much, however, as they have players who can summon their experience in the ABC Motsepe League to pull the team through. With no previous Varsity Football campaigns to guide them, the standard offered by South Africa’s second division may prove pivotal if CUT are to provide a decent showing.
While most visiting teams would gladly settle for a draw in an away match, particularly the first of a tournament, CUT will not be conservative. “We are going for the three points,” Matsemela confidently declared. In closing off their morning training session, Leeuw fired a warning shot at Fort Hare: “They must watch out!”
Tune into SuperSport on Monday, 18th July, at 19:00 to witness a tussle between the de facto underdogs.
CUT team to face UFH:
Starting XI: Mpho Motsoahole (GK), Morena Lehloa, Tshepo Tshikare, Bongani Matsemela (c), Sello Mokhele; Karabo Mojafi, Keitumetse Mabathoana, Abraham Singonzo; Orapeleng Manopole, Cameron Chweu, Katlego Motaung.
Subs: Zolane Ligunya (GK), Rakgomo Taole, Tumelo Njoti, Vusi Vena, Katleho Molakeng, Neo Sebudi, Lebohang Pitlele.
By Sam Styrax