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Football | Varsity Football

Themba Ndlovu and Lindiwe Dube

Sparks expected in Varsity Football

Looking back over the last two weeks of Varsity Football action, it certainly lived up to its tagline: Iyachesa. A total of 28 goals in eight matches, despite it being early days, teams are setting their sights on that top four finish. Position one to four on the log after the round robin stages will qualify for the semifinals and shot at the title.

MATCH 1: UWC v UFH - 16:00

The third week of Varsity Football action continues to hot up as UWC will be hoping to make amends for the 2-1 defeat at the hands of CUT in Bloemfontein, last week, when they host UFH at the UWC Sports Stadium at 16:00. UWC are currently in fourth place with one win and one loss. The men from the Eastern Cape will be hoping to improve their 1-1 result, during last year's competition when they met in Alice.

Phiwokuhle Mpalal and Chad Smith will be dangerous up front for the home side, these two UWC stars have already netted four goals between them. Fort Hare, on the other hand, have not scored a single goal so far and will have to dig deep if they were to walk away with any points. This match will be broadcast live on SuperSport channel 210.

MATCH 2: UJ v TUT - 18:15

In a repeat of the 2016 final, UJ and TUT square up in Johannesburg at the UJ APB Sports Complex. The previous encounter saw TUT outwit UJ 2-1 to claim their first Varsity Football title in front of a packed TUT Stadium. These two sides met for the first time during last year's competition. They played to 1-1 draw in the round robin stages and TUT got the better of UJ during that historic 2016 final. UJ have already beaten one Pretoria side, can they repeat last week's 1-0 victory against UP-Tuks?

Themba Ndlovu is the competition's joint leading top goal scorer with three goals in two matches and will have to be neutralised by UJ from the onset. TUT's opening round draw against UP-Tuks and last week's 7-0 drubbing of UFH sees them occupy the third position on the log. The men from Johannesburg are just one log point behind the 2016 champions, in fifth position. This match will be broadcast live on SuperSport channel 210.

MATCH 3: Wits v CUT - 18:30

Wits will be hoping to stop CUT's unbeaten streak when they meet at the CUT Stadium. CUT pulled off a remarkable first round victory by beating UJ 1-0. A week later CUT delivered yet another blow when they beat UWC 2-1 in Bloemfontein. Wits have conceded ten goals in two matches, a stat shared with UFH. Along with Fort Hare, they are the occupy the bottom of the log with the latter being ahead based on one goal difference. Wits' only goal so far was against NWU when they lost 4-1 in Round One.

CUT's Taole Rakgomo has been in impeccable form having scored two goals, one of only three players to do so, so far this season. Rakgomo will be supported brilliantly by Mpho Molwatse up front. Molwatse scored the winner against UJ in the opening round. CUT are currently in second position, the only other side to have secured two wins, the other being NWU.

MATCH 4: NWU v UP-Tuks - 18:30

Table topping NWU face two-time champions UP-Tuks in Potchefstroom and the home side will be hoping to build on their solid performances in the opening weeks. NWU have scored seven goals and conceded only one. Sandile Mbatha is the competiton's joint top goal scorer having scored three goals. These two sides played to a goalless draw during the 2016 Varsity Football edition.

NWU have become known for pushing hard in the opening minutes of the match and they are usually the first to score. UP-Tuks have been relentless on defense despite conceding two goals, one in the 94th minute against TUT in Round One. The visitors are coming off a 1-0 defeat against UJ at the Tuks Stadium. Can coach Mandla Zwane's men pick up their first win of the season against the in-form NWU side?


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