Border to up game at Craven Week

Academy team also out to replicate their success of last year

Craven Week teams during a practice session held at Hudson Park High School yesterday.
Craven Week teams during a practice session held at Hudson Park High School yesterday.
Image: MARK ANDREWS

The pinnacle of South African school rugby tournaments kicks off today as this year’s Craven Week gets underway at Paarl Boys’ High School in Paarl.

The very best schoolboy rugby talent from across the country will be representing their respective provincial teams, getting the chance to impress on the biggest stage.

The Under 18 Academy week will also be on show, running concurrently with Craven Week, which will add to the excitement.

The Border Craven and Academy teams will be eager to impress over the coming days.

Last year, the Craven Week team had a torrid time, losing all three matches they played, with their defence a big concern, leaking over 40 points a game.

So this year, they will be looking for a much improved effort and will be targeting a good start against Limpopo today, who they lost to in the second game of the week last year.

Our training camp was incredibly demanding on the boys with a view to recreating the physical and mental fatigue that comes with Craven Week.

“We intend to start the week with a bang, we want to win and win well,” Border Craven week coach James Winstanley said.

“We want to win all three games over the week and everyone in the team has worked hard towards achieving this goal.”

A good win over Limpopo could set the Border team up with a clash against one of the big unions on day two.

In all, it is set to be a tough week, with three high intensity matches being played over six days and plenty at stake.

“We only have one attempt at getting this right, the focus has always been and will continue to be intensity and accuracy,” Winstanley said.

“Our training camp was incredibly demanding on the boys with a view to recreating the physical and mental fatigue that comes with Craven Week. We believe we can beat any team on our day. If we execute our plan we know we can beat the so called “big” teams.”

The Academy team will be eager to replicate or better their efforts from last year, when they won two of their three matches during Craven Week.

They start off today against the Leopards, who they beat in their first match last year, and will be gunning for a positive start.

“First and foremost, the boys need to have fun and go express themselves,” said Academy coach Daneal Steyn.

“Our goal as a team is to win at least two out of three games, taking one game at a time and we want to leave a legacy and leave the jersey in a better place for the next group to take over next year.

“The Leopards are definitely going to be a bruising encounter, a physical battle, we would like to play a running expansive game against them so that we can move their big forwards around,” he said.

It is set to be a cracking week of rugby action and Border's two hopes will be going all out to get the best possible results.

The Border Academy team gets things underway against the Leopards at 10.40am this morning before the Craven Week side takes on Limpopo at 12.05pm, with that match (Craven) live on SuperSport 1.

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