Collegians vs Primrose
By Nazeem Kariel
The rivalry between Primrose and Collegians goes back 36 years.
In 1976, following the merger between Rosendales and Silvertree, the Collegians RFC was born. One of their first, if not their first game was against Primrose in Strandfontein.
This was then seen as a match between WP (Track) and City and Suburban given the fact that the two teams had so many current provincial players in their teams. Primrose won this closely fought encounter.
The Collegians team included players such as Armien Masoet, Faried "Oupa" Theunissen, Omar "Vleis" Daniels, Ismail "Brother" Khan, Chris Nicholls, "Cho Cho" Baradien, "Balla" Fredericks and the late Yagya "Duf" Sakier.
In the Primrose team we had players such as Paul Leo, Saait and Rashaad Magiet, Moegsien and Sedick Galant, Igsaan and Allie Sadan, Raashied "Pottie" Conrad, Yusuf "Joe" Allie, Faiek "Rasta" Cassiem, Shreef "Basie" Abass and the late Abdullah "Kameel" Darries.
In the ensuing years many friendly matches were played between the two clubs and a healthy rivalry existed with many friendships being built.
In 1996, the year Primrose celebrated their Centenary, they arranged at tournament comprising of 8 clubs who were all 100+ years old. When Villager RFC declined our invitation there was a unanimous decision by the club that Collegians should replace them even though they were nowhere near 100 years old. Of course, they came and spoilt our party when they beat us in the final.
In 2008, with everyone playing in a unified competition the two clubs played their first ever competitive match against each other with Primrose being the victors. Since then a total of 8 league matches have been played between the two clubs with Collegians being 5 – 3 ahead in terms of games won. The last two matches last season went right down to the wire with Collegians winning both games 27 – 25 and 19 – 17.
We don’t foresee much different this weekend. On the day any team can win, but Collegians with the home ground advantage start as the favourites. We have no doubt that the spectators are in for an enthralling game between two disciplined teams who play a good brand of rugby.
I doubt if any of the players that are playing this Saturday were even born when that historic first match was played way back in 1976. Let us pay homage to those players and may the best team win.