The Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) opened their account in the inaugural Varsity Football Challenge on a high when they beat the University of the Western Cape (UWC) 2-0 away on Monday 22 July 2013.
Two goals by Niven Kops and Leroy van Rensburg in the second half ensured that the visitors collect the maximum three points on a chilly evening at UWC Sports Stadium.
This was a good start for NMMU coach Lukhanyo Wasa’s side who will play four of their seven games in the eight-team competition away.
“Most of our games are away and we prepared the team to treat away games as home games and go all out. Fortunately tonight we got those points,” Wasa commented after the game.
The game started slow with both sides looking nervous and not only giving the ball away too cheaply but also failing to convert the few chances they created.
In the second stanza Wasa brought on Claudius Ray Sangandira for Bradley Peterson, and he immediately made his presence felt when he hit the post.But it was Kops who changed the game when he flicked the ball past UWC goalkeeper and captain Basikelele Mdletye in the 62nd minutes. Van Rensburg finished the business when he tapped in a loose ball after Mdletye paired a shot.
For UWC, silly mistakes have cost them the game, and the team’s technical staff have their work cut out to turn the team’s fortune around going forward.
The Varsity Football Challenge, sanctioned by the South African Football Association and the University Sport South Africa (USSA), is the latest addition to the popular Varsity Sports initiative, organised by the University Sports Company (a conglomerate of South African universities) and its exclusive service provider, Advent Sport Entertainment and Marketing.
It follows the success earlier this year of Varsity Athletics and Varsity Hockey, and that of Varsity 7’s rugby and Varsity Beach Volleyball, which were launched in 2012.
The NMMU team will travel to Cape Town again next Monday to face the University of Cape Town.