Afrikaanse Hoër Seunskool and Hoërskool Waterkloof have had an intense, controversial rugby rivalry, writes MARIETTE ADAMS.
HISTORY OF THE DERBY
The first match between Affies and Waterkloof was in 1987 (the latter school was founded in 1979). There have been 41 derbies since, with Affies winning 32 and Klofies nine.
However, there was a breakdown in the relationship between the schools, which meant they didn’t play each other from 2007 to 2012. Affies and Klofies met on four occasions in 2006, with each team winning two matches. In the second derby that year, Waterkloof were firm favourites to win away at Affies, only for the hosts to prevail 28-24. Afterwards, there were allegations that Affies had wet their field in order to stifle Waterkloof’s lethal backline. Klofies felt robbed, while Affies didn’t take kindly to being called cheats. The remaining two derbies of the season were played, but the teams would not meet again until 2012.
It was only when Daan Potgieter, who served as Affies’ vice-principal for 25 years, took over as Waterkloof headmaster in 2011 that ties between the schools were re-established. His efforts as mediator were rewarded when the schools agreed to play once a year from 2012 onwards.
THIS YEAR’S DERBY
Waterkloof travelled to Affies’ home turf and caused one of the upsets of the season by winning 24-15. In the week preceding the derby, Affies had stormed to a 52-22 win over Jeppe, while Waterkloof suffered a 45-8 defeat at the hands of Helpmekaar.
But the form book was tossed aside as a brilliant start saw Klofies race out to a 14-0 lead, thanks to converted tries by wing JP Krugell and flank Wikus Lindeque. Affies gained momentum as the match progressed and fought back well to trail by four at the break after No 8 Jaco Labuschagne scored a try. Fullback Regardt Roets slotted the conversion and a penalty.
The same pattern followed in the second half. Krugell crashed over for his second try of the game, with teammate Ulrich Maritz nailing the conversion and a penalty to extend Klofies’ lead to 14. Wing Ruben Meiring would end off the scoring with a late try for Affies, but by then the damage had already been done.
LAST YEAR’S DERBY
After several close encounters between the teams, Affies recorded a crushing 48-14 away win over Waterkloof in 2016. The 34-point winning margin was the biggest between the teams in 18 years. Affies ran in seven tries, with hooker and captain Schalk Erasmus and wing Carel Koch each scoring a brace, while flyhalf Ruan de Swardt added five conversions, a penalty and a drop goal. Waterkloof scored two tries, one in each half.
FAMOUS OLD BOYS WHO PLAYED IN THE DERBY
WYNAND OLIVIER (AFFIES)
‘I played in the derby in 2000, the year I joined Affies. As a small-town boy from Riebeeckstad, just outside Welkom, I had only seen games like this on TV. It was my first taste of a big game. Putting on that white jersey and running out in front of thousands of schoolboys singing “Wit Bulle” is one of my best memories. I remember it like it was yesterday. We beat Klofies comfortably, and while I went on to play a lot of games for Affies, the adrenaline rush before that game and the winning feeling afterwards was the best experience of my school-rugby days.’
PIERRE SPIES (AFFIES)
‘I played some of my best rugby in this fixture. On the Friday, the school would assemble either in the pavilion or hall to sing songs and there was always a speech given by “Hertzog”, a figure of “history present” to motivate the team to get the win. Matches against Waterkloof always had a different edge to them and I was fortunate enough to experience it on five occasions. In 2002, when I was in Grade 11, we met three times and Affies won all those games. At the time, Klofies had about 2 500 pupils, while Affies had fewer than 1 000, making the hat-trick of wins that much sweeter for us. My second season with the 1st XV was less pleasant. Klofies beat us twice in 2003. It wasn’t great to finish school like that, but as much as it pains me to admit, they had a good team that year.’
FRANCOIS BRUMMER (WATERKLOOF)
‘There’s no bigger school event than Klofies against Affies. That is the game you worked towards from the day pre-season began. And everyone knew they had to prepare properly, because it’s always a physical encounter. The teams are always ready to rough each other up. I remember standing in the tunnel about to run on to the field for my first derby experience. I was pumped up and nervous at the same time. We’d have arguments with mates from Affies throughout the week about who was the best team in Pretoria. Luckily for me, my first derby ended in victory. Beating Affies felt so good then and it still feels good saying it now.’
TWO CLASSIC ENCOUNTERS
2006: WATERKLOOF 21 AFFIES 18
This was the third derby of the year and followed the controversial match at Affies (see ‘History of the derby’) that resulted in the severing of rugby ties between the schools. The lead exchanged hands several times, and with Affies leading 18-14 late in the game, Klofies centre Stefan Watermeyer made a dazzling run to score the winning try, which Francois Brummer converted. Klofies’ two earlier tries had been scored by wing Wynand Willis.
2013: AFFIES 19 WATERKLOOF 18
The hosts opened the scoring with a converted try by wing Thys van Wyk, but Klofies hit back with two tries by prop Johan van Wyk and wing Dewald Lindeque, and a penalty to take a 15-7 lead shortly after the break. Affies narrowed the gap to three with a try by wing Tiaan Schmulian, only for Klofies flyhalf Tinus de Beer to nail another penalty. In the dying minutes, Affies bashed away at the tryline before fullback Eduan Keyter exposed a gap in the Waterkloof defence to score. Scrumhalf Ivan van Zyl held his nerve to slot the match-winning conversion.
PAST 10 RESULTS
2006: Waterkloof 45 Affies 20
2006: Affies 28 Waterkloof 24
2006: Waterkloof 21 Affies 18
2006: Affies 17 Waterkloof 7
2012: Waterkloof 23 Affies 16
2013: Affies 19 Waterkloof 18
2014: Waterkloof 38 Affies 21
2015: Affies 28 Waterkloof 15
2016: Waterkloof 14 Affies 48
2017: Affies 15 Waterkloof 24
NUMBERS THAT MATTER
32 – Matches won by Affies
10 – Matches won by Waterkloof
12 – Longest winning streak in the derby, by Affies
1,028 – Points scored by Affies
612 – Points by Waterkloof
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