FNB NMMU-Madibaz coach David Maidza has delivered a plain message to his Varsity Cup rugby team – beat UCT on Monday or face the risk of being involved in a relegation battle.

Both teams are stuck at the bottom of the log, having suffered four losses from four games, and the losers will face the bleak prospect of relegation.

The teams square off at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg, with the match kicking off at 12.45pm.

While the Madibaz produced arguably their most disappointing performance of the season against Pukke on Monday, Maidza said the players had acknowledged their mistakes and were fired up to deliver.

“There is a sense of urgency in the team because I can defend us losing having put in a lot of effort, as demonstrated by previous losses, but the Pukke loss did not have that fight in it.

“The boys have put their hands up and acknowledged their mistakes and we are excited to go back on Monday to showcase our true potential.”

While the pressure is building for both teams, Maidza said the Madibaz would not deviate from their game plan and their objective to play as a team, while identifying the need to be more clinical in certain areas.

“Our aim is to go out and play as a team. We have done that in previous games against UJ and Maties, and for most of the match against Shimlas.

“The desire and the effort to play for the team is what we have to get right first.

“We also identified that we were not patient enough when we got into the opposition’s 22m area.

“We need to be more accurate here and defend more vigorously for longer periods.”

As the teams play to restore their pride, it will be a case of trying to play constructive rugby, while Maidza said they also needed to seize their opportunities when they arose.

They know time is running out with only three matches left. Following the game against UCT, they play Tukkies in Cape Town on March 24 and finish off against CUT in Cape Town on March 28.

Without looking too far ahead, Maidza is still confident they can put in a late surge in the competition.

Issued by: Coetzee Gouws
On behalf of Madibaz Sport