BAY’S SEASON KICKS OFF
DirectAxis False Bay’s much anticipated 2016 season gets underway in earnest on Saturday when they host traditional rivals Hamiltons at Constantia on Saturday and it is the club rugby fan who will benefit the most by getting an early peek at two of the top clubs in the SLA.
It may only be February but there has been much on-field activity already, with practice matches against Maties and UCT under the belt as well as other activity beyond that of the Senior Squad. The club’s Third and Fourth XVs undertook a successful trip to Kleinmond RFC, illustrating the club’s player depth by overcoming the two premier teams of their hosts last Saturday. The False Bay Rugby Kids Academy enjoyed a wonderful encounter against Masi Mpumelele RFC at Constantia.
It was the kiddies encounter which grabbed the attention for a day as thirty young, determined players from Masi Mpumelele near Noordhoek trekked over the mountain to get some early season match practice and enjoy a post match boerewors roll with their opponents. The rugby was played in a great spirit, with hard running and sometimes even harder tackling. The youngsters from both clubs showed potential and are destined to be stars of the future. At the end of the three chukka contest, the players got together in a circle before moving over to the fires for a bite to eat but their enthusiasm seemed to spill over as many wandered back onto the pitch to continue a game of touch rugby.
“This opportunity to play against opposition is very valuable in the development of our players”, says Frankie “Beans” Charlie, coach of the Masi squad. A former False Bay prop with over 100 caps for their First XV, Charlie’s passion for the game and youth is palpable and a huge benefit to his charges. Plans are afoot to make this a monthly interaction.
The business end of the season is barely a month away and three very tough rounds of friendly matches awaits the Constantia club. Coach Jonno van der Walt will have cut his squad down during this week but those not making the initial cut are surely encouraged by the added opportunity to impress against top quality opposition such as this week’s opponents Hamiltons as well as Durbell and Maties.
With the Gold Cup taking place in September and October, that aforementioned depth in talent will be tapped as form and injury take their toll.
Hamiltons bring four teams to Constantia on Saturday, including an Under 20 outfit. The two clubs enjoy a long rivalry and recent results have tipped the way of the Sea Point club. The Bay’s only loss in SLA2015 was to Hammies and they rubbed it in a little with a resounding victory over the Constantia club in the President’s Cup semi-final at season’s end. DirectAxis False Bay captain Graham “Snoopy” Knoop has a philosophy of developing friendships with opposition and this rivalry is sure to be buffed by the silky cloth of off-the-pitch camaraderie.
The Bay also welcomes Rangers RFC who will face the False Bay Fourth XV in a pre-season friendly.
Matches kick off at 1pm with the main encounter starting at3.30pm. All are welcome.