Free State u18A redefining what good Craven Week preparation means

Of all eight provincial teams in with a shot of making the unofficial Craven Week final, the Free State build up has so far been the best of the lot.

Good cohesion goes a long way at Craven Week because most teams tend to arrive undercooked in the sense that just about every head coach wishes he’d had more time to prepare his squad of players. Due to budget and interschool commitments, access to players and required resources is limited and is often regarded as inadequate by the coaches.

Some of the things setting Free State apart from the chasing pack in 2019 are:

    1. They are already going to benefit from  having 16 or possibly more out of their 23 squad from Grey College – the core of the squad is literally able to workout together on a daily basis.
    2. Craven Week will be played at Grey College from 1-6 July 2019 – you can’t ask for more than homefield advantage to this extent.
    3. Grey College’s last competitive interschool match was against Affies on 18 May 2019 – since then their players have been able to dedicate themselves entirely to the Craven Week process without distraction.
    4. While the best the Blue Bulls and Golden Lions could manage were a couple of midweek trial matches sandwiched between Saturday school commitments, Free State have used two Saturdays exclusively for their warm-up matches – in this regard, Boland who would probably have generous 5000:1 odds on them to beat the Western Province A-team on Craven Week Day 1, did get in a Saturday match against SWD recently.

 

    THE SCHOOLBOY RUGBY BLOG CRAVEN WEEK PREDICTION FROM DECEMBER 2018

 

 

126 Comments

  1. Morning Guys Help me understand. We all know about the quota systems in our rugby and other sports, with the purpose to give an equal opportunity to the poor previously disadvantaged child who does not have the same coaching and facilities in the so-called township schools. My question and confusion come in with the selection of the Craven week teams. Most (if not all) of the black and coloured players in the teams come from former model c schools. How then does the quota system benefit the township child and development of rugby? We actually have a system in terms of which kids who already have equal opportunities get selected or left out in terms of a quota system, to achieve equal opportunities where it already exists? Maybe I do not understand the quota system and its goals or the implementation thereof?

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  2. Although Im new on this blog, I have been following comments for almost two years. What strikes me about the Free State and Grey, is that they just quietly go about their business.Everyone is debating on why and how they are succeeding while they do all their talking on the pitch. Fact is that they are the benchmark of SA school rugby, and while they might have the odd one or two off seasons from time to time, ( and that is only off by their high standards )that is unlikely to change ever.No matter how hard the others try, particularly those in the Cape

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  3. @Rooikat: In a perfect world you would have SA Rugby involved in grassroots development right across the country.

    In the real world they prescribe window dressing measures to mask their utter failure to develop a structure to assist in rugby development in PD areas.

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  4. @Rooikat: As an ex ZimBOBwean, Im also confused. Who is regarded as “previously disadvantaged”, why are they deemed as such, and who exactly is responsible for their disadvantage?

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  5. @Rooikat: I know for a fact that the black kids hate the quota setup, at least the ones deserving of being selected on merit. It’s something that plays on their minds, which is totally unnecessary.

    I also have a hunch that our struggling at the cricket WC is due to a broken system which starts at u13 provincial representative level. Cricket is a game of numbers – bowling and batting averages – if you select on any other basis, you weaken your domestic competitions and over time it spills over to the national side.

    Athletics SA is also in trouble for not meeting their targets. That’s even more ridiculous, because if there ever was a sport where numbers is the only thing, it’s athletics – how fast, far or high is the only thing that counts. Let’s see how they solve that at the national level.

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  6. @STAN: i can understand why you were kicked out of zimbabwe

    why do you think were responsible for their disadvantage-illuminati/Martians-Ian Smith :-D :-D :-D

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  7. @boerboel: Die kere wat ek jou “kommintaar” gelees het- nie vir die literere inhoud of akkuraatheid daarvan nie, maar eerder vir vermaak, het ek tot n paar gevolgtrekkings gekom. Die naam, “Poedel” sou miskien meer gepas gewees het as “Boerboel”. Tweedens, dat jy op n plaasskool was, gesukkel het met puisies en gereeld gebliksem is deur ander kinders.Dit verklaar waarskynlik jou onsamehangende geblaf, noudat jy as “keyboard warrior” met n blou trui is. Die werklik oudskoliere is seker nie besonders trots op jou gekerm nie. En jou aanname dat ek uit Zim “geskop” is, is ewe belaglik. Ek reis gereeld tussen die twee lande, maar kan ook vrylik na Britanje en die EU lande reis. En dan boonop, het ek verblyfreg in Australie. My ma is n boer en het my “ge-home school” in Afrikaans.So, anders as jy, is ek nie beperk tot die grense van my dorp nie. En terloops, jou gekerm gaan niks aan die realiteite van die VS se prestasies verander nie.

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  8. I still think Border have an edge over the Bulls. Bias aside. But anything can happen. EP dark horses as well.

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  9. @STAN: Baie geluk Stan-bly jy kan so tussen die lande reis-kan sien dis nb vir jou.Nogal Australie ook.

    hoe het jy dit reggekry? Vertel ons asb? 8-O 8-O

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  10. @ TZAVOSKY: Yes there are many black kids from model c schools who would have been selected on merit but now form part of the target number, which is unfair to them. In my view, a mocel c school player cannot be part of the target number.

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  11. @boerboel: In n neutedop, gesondheid, geld en vaardighede- intellektueel, akademies en prakties, wat beteken, jy sal sukkel.

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  12. @Rooikat: Even less so, someone who attends a R600,000 pa private school,whose parents earns over R 2 million and steals another R 2 million

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  13. @STAN: yip have not met a whenwe who does not have racesist tendencies or a chip somewhere

    weird

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  14. @boerboel: Bra stan het jou so gebrand in vier posts dat jy die res van jou lewe Vaseline op jou groceries lysie gaan moet sit….ek dink jy sal hom maar in die vervolg meneer moet noem

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  15. @Grizzly: who do you think will suffer more if grey does not play against numbers 2, 3 and 4 on the list to the right, or even 9 and 10? we will probably end there soon given the financial impact of travelling across the country, and it may be advisable for the cape schools to rather play against one another (home and away) and grey can play their local schools, eg louis botha and sentraal. they can assume the nr 1 spot forever then. and to assume that a person that sends his kids to private schools is a thief, as stan hinted, is wrong. but then again, that is why he is in australia.

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  16. @STAN: Stan you correct they are the benchmark for SA school boy rugby and a school I admire immensely.However dont think they are always quiet and take it on the chin when its not going their way.Having gone to school for 10 years across the way from Grey and having taken numerous drubbings from them in a variety of sports one gets a bit peeved when on the odd occasion you get one up on them and they try to steal your thunder.( admittedly never happened in rugby to me)In rugby if you beat the C team and they would then bring the B team to bliksem you😁😁.Grey unfortunately are a victim of their own success as they are forced to travel to get meaningful fixtures for the whole school.Talent congregates their through recruitment and for the fact that a lot of kids know that it puts you on a fast track to provincial recognition. Unfortunately most other schools only get a look in when the selectors are looking for that most offensive term”Players of Colour”.One other thing that people tend to forget is that Greys school fees are one of the lowest around.More than one of my school mates has sent his kids there due to the fact that it is so much cheaper than my alma mater.

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  17. @apple: You are making wild assumptions. Where did I say that someone who sends his kids to a private school, is a thief? I and my children all had the benefit of a private education. I simply used an extreme example- and believe me, there are a number of those, where someone who in fact had a very privileged upbringing, suddenly is regarded as “disadvantaged” when it comes to school rugby. You also wrongly conclude that Im in Oz. I said that I have the right of residence there. However difficult it may be, you should really try and focus. Where were you at school?

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  18. @Veg: Nothing that you say, actually suggests any wrongdoing or arrogance on their part. Im not so naive to think that they dont recruit, but looking at their record over decades, I think, probably less than most schools. But if all the comments here, were to be believed, one would think that they have almost no fee paying learners.I believe that their winning ratio (rugby)over a century, is around 90%. That is a hell of an achievement and surpasses that of even Man United under Alex Ferguson. Im told that their fees, are certainly “value for money”, but at the same time, little Johnny does not just walk into the school. He needs to prove achievement- academic or otherwise.

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  19. @McCulleys Workshop: No no, I am standing on the sidelines enjoying the way Stan has put the wannabee Boishaai doggie in his place.
    Thing is the doggie on his own is succeeding in making Boishaai a school nobody likes.
    And the big difference between Grey College and the rest is that Grey is a well known brand, recognised all over the world.
    No other school can claim that right.

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  20. @STAN: I was never implying wrong doing.I personally dont have any issue with recruiting at what ever stage.I was just letting you know that they are quite capable of spitting the dummy.Example they refused to play cricket against St Andrews as they accused them of poaching their players.

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  21. @Smallies: Yip maar in my dae was daar nie winkel sentrums tussen die twee skole nie.Daar was net die Brandwag sentrum en n klien gebou wat Mimosa films was.No listen I know Grey well and like I said admire them.Played many different sports against them.

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  22. @Veg: Ek was op kovsies toe mimosa mall gebou is ,die meisieskool se sportveld was tydelike parkering voor dat die sentrum klaar was…Mimosa was basies net Dion, die flieks en Barbas caffe gewees,ja nee saints is darem self n topklas skool….lekker sterk tradiesies en n goeie oldboys netwerk,my een pel se seun is tans n krieket,hokkie afrigter daar

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  23. @Rooikat: As I understand it most of the PDI boys in the old model C schools are recruited. They actually live in very poor communities. So it is not only about where you are schooled.
    That said, quotas are just wrong. If SARU was serious about the boys they would have had development weeks in addition to the Craven week, where they could have identified and then nurtured these boys’ skills.
    But Grant Khomo and Craven week have developed into these development weeks.

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  24. @Chronicle: There is only one Rugby School in the Paarl and that’s Gimmes. If Grey was in the Paarl they would be 3rd best behind Bois High

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  25. @Veg: A friend of mine from Bulawayo went to Saints. He told me of a consistent supply of communion wine, nicked from the church on the premises. But, Im sure, long before your time.

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  26. @STAN: That was still going on in my time.Think the old priest was aware but would then have to explain why he had ordered so much.

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  27. @Chronicle: Taylor and Goosen who were there for 2 months then went back to Selborne are neither PDI nor poor. Neither was Jan Serfontein when he was at Grey PE. I could give you more names. But at this point in time, I can only think of only 1 PDI player… Wyclef Vlitoor who was snapped up from Dale. Let’s please debate on facts.

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  28. @Bush: If Grey was in the Paarl- God forbid, there would not have been a Gym or Boishaai. Grey should consider establishing a satellite campus though , which could serve as a “finishing school” for boys- similar to the girl schools in Switzerland.Taking off the rough edges and preparing them for adult life. They could even assist local people like Boerboel. Mind you, even Kwazuma Natal, could do with some personal fine tuning.

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  29. @Playa: Not sure what you are trying to say, but kids from all over SA and beyond have been going to Grey. My sisters kids attended Grey from Zim and I know that there were kids from Zambia too. I have just checked with them and they have had three hostels for the best part of 160 yrs. If I was a young boy with rugby ambitions in the Eastern Cape, I too, would want to go to Grey. And can you blame them?

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  30. @STAN: You reckon Kwazuma Natal should fine tune their anthem? Move from “Mshini wam” to good old “Shosholoza”?

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  31. @Playa: What is Dale doing ito development in the area? Not just rugby, but other sporting codes, like soccer, hockey, golf, waterpolo , tennis? The decline in standards in the region is glaring.

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  32. @STAN: I’m not being cynical… Dale develops local talent for wealthier schools around the country.

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  33. @Playa: Great to hear that, but I did ask for details, particularly about development in sporting codes, other than rugby- soccer, water polo, swimming, tennis, cricket, hockey—- If they are moaning now, what on earth are they going to do when kids start applying for those Montpelier bursaries? Maybe, Smallies can tell us more about that?

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  34. Ek hoop die ander spanne gaan kan punte aanteken teen OVS
    Geld daai reel tydens CW ook dat games vroeg gestop gaan word ?

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  35. @Speartackle: Goeie vraag

    arme ou bogggie-spannetjie bietjie pak gevat vir 3 jaar-toe verdwyn hy maar-nou weer n paar games gewen0en watwo- “Stan” is the man :-D :-D :-D

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  36. Stan is the Man yes
    As dit ou Bog is dan is daar ten minste weer lewe
    Nou moet Hopper net ook n come back maak daan is dit weer soos in die ou dae
    Nickerball lekker

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  37. @Speartackle: Ek dink die klompie sal daarop aandring om hulle eie skeidsregters saam te bring.Oor die laaste twee jaar wat ek hier ingeloer het, is dit net n eentonige geteem oor die “skelm” skeidsregters in die VS. Maar vir my, as onpartydige en objektiewe waarnemer, moet ek se, dat met die bedenklike standaarde landswyd, is die ou klompie in die WK, seker die heel swakste. Maar dit lyk vir my, as iemand dit vir hulle se, dan raak hulle hartjies seer, en dan is daardie persoon “bitter”.

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  38. @Speartackle: dit is net hy-selfde onsamehangende gebrabbel en grey fiksasie-nou net in engels

    ook n Chris Hart dissipel-dit se baie

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  39. Players from Strand that went to primary school in Strand – Damian Willemse, Handre Pollard, Remone Samuels, Dillyn Leyds, William Rose, Willie Le roux, Steven Kitshof, Errol jaggers, Uzair Cassiem just to name a few :)

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  40. @Hafeez:
    What about Earl?
    Isn’t he also from the Strand
    Still think he still the best ever from Strand

    Maybe following closely behind him Tobie Basson, Wernher Bock and Zander Kotze

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  41. @Speartackle: Earl is currently playing for Kuilriver Rugby club, that’s why i didn’t want to mension him. his Bro can be included coz his playing for Saracens in Romania

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  42. @Hafeez: wat van kobus immelman,colin beck en kobus kirsten

    jip ST rand n goeie broeiplek vir rugbyspelers

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  43. @boerboel: you know who lives next to me? you will like this boy, Manny Ras! another quiet boy that made it through the ranks is James Verity- Amm, Played for Western Force and Brumbies

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  44. @Playa: has a point. As a neutral rugby lover I watched the Grey/Gimmies game.
    I was amazed by the commentator….to me it sounds like every third player in Grey’s team were the year before in another school and most of them already played CW for a different province the previous year.
    I remember him mentioning a player from Menlopark, something about twins from Harrismith or Welkom who played for Northern Free State, some players from Border schools.

    Game was a while ago, so can’t remember clearly, but it seems an awful nr of boys mentioned in that context.
    Maybe I misheard, maybe not….

    Grey is a great rugby school…however it would be interesting to know which school plow the most “met ander man se kallers”
    Out of idle curiosity, i would like to know precisely which schools 1st team has the most players that were playing the previous year for another schools first team.

    If the commentator (innocently) is correct, it must be Grey
    That will make them the true masters of the delayed option and will detract somewhat from their achievements.

    I would like to know the true facts, please correct me if I am wrong, but it was quite an eye-opener listening to the commentary.

    I don’t care 2 hoots if HJS or Grey are the kings of the delayed option…..but I like clarity
    So how many Jan Serfontein’s are in this years Grey team?

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  45. @Vyfster: Of the entire Grey College 1st team this year only two of the players have not been in Grey since grade 8, namely Franco Knoetze (grade 11 wing) and FC du Plessis (grade 12 flyhalf). FC du Plessis was in fact in Grey primary school until the end of grade 7 before they relocated.

    Hope that answers your question.

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  46. @Vyfster: The commentators were somewhat incorrect. As Greybrak stated, Franco Knoetze joined from Menlopark on Grade 10 (so not in Menlopark last year), and FC du Plessis was at Grey primary, relocated to Welkom, and then came back to Grey this year (so yes he played for Welkom Gim I believe last year). The twin centres they were referring to were actually the Gim centres, but they did mistakenly say the Grey centres, so understandable where this misconception comes from.

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  47. @Spear: Lekker Spies!Grey werf nie,jy doen aansoek en word gekeur..dit help natuurlik as jy kan rugby speel soos Serfie en uit n Stamboom kom soos hy :wink:

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  48. Beet please man
    Who is this Boishaai punk that is stalking me man?
    And where is Stan?

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  49. @boerboel: Ek weet jy gaan reply so kom ek maak jou gou nog meer opgewonde.

    Ek wed jou as ek keurder en afrigter was sal ek n span uit Affies, Garsies, Kloof en Menlo Kies wat jou Wynland span hard sal stamp! 8-O

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  50. @Rainier: Nee.. Eers Gr10 Bloem toe.. Was eers in Grey PE in Gr 8 en 9. My seun het nog teen hom krieket gespeel op u/15 week toe hy vir OP gespeel het.. Sy pa my toe vertel hy gaan gr10 Bloem toe..en hulle sal later ook verhuis.

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  51. @BoishaaiPa: Nee wat,Ek sal my huis gee vir so geleentheid.Wat ek by NS gesien het en die bietjie van PRG op SSL dink ek daars meer as n kans.

    Jou kennis van rugby strek te ver om my die skole apart te verkoop.Jy weet ek het net 23 nodig wat 23 uitdaag.Met meriette as enigste maatstaf belowe ek jou daag ek op met n span meer as op gewasse.Soos ek se die enigste vereiste is ek kies en hulle speel my game plan…

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  52. @Smallies: Mens gooi niks uit of in ‘n Laborie bottel nie, dis ten beste ‘n kookwyn, soos die meeste wyne van die Paarl

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  53. @Ploegskaar: 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 ja nee ek persoonlik is ook nie lief vir daai wyn nie,ek is maar n kommin ou so verkies maar meer die noord Kaap se wyn spesefiek kakemas en Upington se wereld

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  54. @BoishaaiPa: Kom ek verduidelik.Se albei spanne kry vir aanval 9,jy moet toegee Noord kan ook driee druk.Die verskil imo tussen N en S is op verdediging.As Suid n 9 is,is N 5.Op daai vlak waar daai 8 skole speel is dit baie punte.

    Die bietjie wat ek af gerig het was laerskool klonge.Een van die ouers was X Ntvl,oor die 100 games asook bok,maar nooit n toets gespeel nie.Hyt baie sulses saam Nollis op skole vlak bereik.

    Ons het Sy patroon/plan van verdediging geoefen.Van die vaste fasette het 10 en 12 op geskiet op 12 opposisie.13,14 saam maar by hul nrs gebly.

    Die opposisie 10 het 3 keuses,skop,pass die bal Vir 12 wat klaar onder druk is,of ons eerste keuse …vat die halwe gap.

    Dis hier waar 6/7/8 en 9 hom isolate en baklei vir turnover.Grey SPEEL so,ek het op NS weer gesien.Miskien nie selfde blou druk nie maar hulle isolate aanvallers met 2/3 verdedigers en force die turnover.

    In general play is daar ook n plan op defence maar dit kom basies op dieselfde neer…Dis net asof spanne in NV,miskien oor die algemeen,planloos is op defence.

    Dis juis hieroor hoekom ek dink Gim gaan interskole wen…Pieter.
    Soos jy wat krieket ken,daars baie wat bating kan afrig maar min weet waarvan hulle praat as dit by bowling Kom.Lyk my dieselfde by aanval en sukkel met defence in Ruggas.

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  55. @Grizzly: Dis hoekom ons Sean sal gebruik vir die defence en coaching. Sela..game over!.. :mrgreen: ..Jy moet onthou Pieter was ook die laaste 4 jaar die coach met Interskole… En ek het al menige male gese jy wen Interskole met verdediging. BH het nog dieslfde defence coach as laaste 4 jaar.

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  56. @BoishaaiPa: Ok,dan stem ons saam oor iets, defence wen die belangrike games :lol: Ek dink net julle het te veel talent gehad vorige jare… Pieter het by Jaques geleer,hierdie Jaar is die spanne gelyk wat talent aan betref :lol:

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  57. @Grey Brak: @Feline: thanx, I understand now….the player fromMenlo and Welkom went to Grey, commentator was wrong about the twins, they actually went to Gim….probably honest mistake
    Thanx , my question is answered…..people surely understand that eyebrows were raised by commentator naming 4 players in Grey team from other high schools…so it is actually 2 each to Grey and Gim :wink:

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  58. @Smallies: Ja stem.Ek hou by my stelling dat hulle op die dag enige span kan stamp.Sien ons vriend het toe nie gepitch nie,die local Supermarket is seker uit Vaseline.. :mrgreen:

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