Maties looking for back-to-back FNB Varsity Cup Women’s titles

FNB Maties are looking look to cement their dominance in women’s rugby and defend their title when they take on FNB UFH in the final of the 2024 FNB Varsity Cup Women in Pretoria tomorrow (14:00).

Head coach Johann Zeier believes his side did well throughout the season even though they are a new group.

“The season has been good to us so far, we’ve had our challenges along the way but have managed to keep the ball rolling. We’ve worked really hard to get where we are.

“The squad is different this year but they have seriously stepped up to the plate. They have really impressed me with their ability so far. All the challenges we threw at them in pre-season were handled very well. It is a tough competition to be in but I fully back our preparation.”

It is an away final for both teams. Zeier says it would have been good if they could have played at home.

“We finished top of the log so would have liked a home final, but it is out of our control. The game being in Pretoria doesn’t take anything away from what we are aiming to do. Our preparations are looking on par, we had a great week and the team is looking forward to the final.”

Maties skipper Liza Slabbert switched from playing hockey to rugby and is eager to win it for Maties this year, as well as for her sister, Nina, who could not be with the winning team last year due to injury.

“I have always loved sport and the outdoors. I played hockey throughout high school so it just made sense for me to continue playing at university. I played for two years before joining Maties Rugby.

“Our season has been mostly positive, except for a few injuries. We have put in a lot of time and effort to get to where we are. I am very proud of the ladies and how far each one of them has come.

“We have worked very hard for this opportunity, so all I want is for everyone to give it their all and enjoy the moment and leave everything out on the field and don’t come off with any regrets.”

by Lehlogonolo Ditshego