Varsity Cup 2018: Maties v Wits Preview

Two players tackling a player

Maties will be looking to book a third consecutive Varsity Cup final appearance when they take on Wits on Monday the 2nd of April.

Monday's second Varsity Cup semi-final is set to be a cracker with underdogs Wits travelling to Stellenbosch to take on tournament favourites, Maties. The visitors were only one of two sides who managed to avoid defeat to Maties during the round-robin phase of the tournament as they held their illustrious opponents to a 30-30 draw in Johannesburg,

Maties v Wits
Monday 2 April
Danie Craven Stadium

19:00

To Win (80 Mins)
Maties 1/8

Draw 20/1
Wits 9/2

Handicap
Maties (-13.5) 17/20
Wits (+13.5) 17/20


Maties
It's been yet another vintage season from the men who hail from South Africa's premium wine farming community. An unbeaten round-robin phase saw them top the table and subsequently book a home semi-final with fourth-placed finishers, Wits.

While home ground advantage and their all-conquering record, see Maties come into this one as red-hot favourites with the 'books, fans of the Cape-based side should perhaps keep the JC Le Roux on ice until this one is over as Wits were one of the sides that Maties were unable to defeat during this year's round-robin phase.

Maties have managed to win their previous two semi-finals, beating UJ 22-14 last year and Tuks 49-11 in 2016. They have a dominant record at the Danie Craven Stadium with their last loss at the venue occurring in the 2016 final where they went down by just a solitary point to Pukke.

Wits
Regardless of how this one plays out, Wits can be extremely proud of their 2018 campaign. I mean this is a side that only returned to the top tier last year and they've already managed to secure a semi-final.

The 'Witsies' enjoyed a solid if not spectacular round-robin phase winning four and drawing one of their eight fixtures. They managed to rack up seven bonus points, which was the joint highest amount.

This Monday's visitors have been extremely competitive against Maties since they returned to the top tier last season. They gave the Maties a real run in Stellenbosch last year, where they only went down by 12 points, while this year saw them hold their opponents to a 30-30 draw.

Verdict: Wits (+13.5) 17/20
With so much on the line, this should prove to be an extremely tight game. And while I see the hosts winning it, I don't think it will be by more than the handicap.

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Written by Darry Worthington for @Hollywoodbets.net

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