High noon as old rivals clash on rugby field

Liam May

GREY High School’s Philip rugby field buzzed with excitement as the Mill Park boys took on traditional rivals Dale College from King William’s Town on Saturday.

Rugby lovers came from around the province – including Queenstown, Kirkwood, and King William’s Town – to see the two schools battle it out in what was expected to be one of the most hotly contested matches of the school rugby season.

The boisterous fans braved a stiff wind to egg on their favourites but the Grey boys – dressed in their school uniforms with straw boaters and swinging candy sticks – proved to be more intimidating as they led the crowd in song and war cries.

Former Grey pupil Devon Coetzee was among the hundreds cheering. “Usually the away fans [in this case Dale] sit there without singing as they are intimidated but it is not the case this time, which is good to see,” he said.

But in the end Grey managed to put a stop to the King William’s Town school’s unbeaten run. The final score was 22-9.

Dale supporter Vuyani Nxele, a former pupil at the school, said he was impressed with the spirit in which the game was played and acknowledged that the opposition were better on the day.

“Dale controlled much of the first half. It was a very physical encounter but Grey has proven to be difficult to beat at home,” he said.

Former Queens College first rugby team duo, twin brothers Kofi and Kadwyn Smith, travelled from Queenstown to watch the game. They lauded Dale for playing an “entertaining brand of rugby”. “They play with tenacity, vigour and are unpredictable most of the time as they move the ball around,” they said.

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