About 120 km outside Cape Town in the heart of the Overberg lies the picturesque town of Hermanus better known as the Whale Mecca of Southern Africa. However, things have been stirring in this idyllic little slice of heaven for a different reason of late as rugby at Hermanus High School has been going from strength to strength.
The Hermies kicked off 2011 season with a tour to Argentina which turned out to be an unforgettable experience for the boys. Two teams (33 players) played six games against strong opposition, winning all but one of the matches. The touring party got the opportunity to visit Buenos Aires (where the 1st XV lost 19-21 to Curupayti Rugby Club), the coastal village of Mar del Plata (here the 1st XV beat Comercial RC 48-0) and beautiful Rosario (the 1st XV defeated Gymnasia y Esgrima de Rosario 28-15). It was an exceptionally successful tour which laid the foundations for the impressive local record achieved so far.
In the second term games were played against Villiersdorp (won 55-0), Groenberg (won 47-0), Parel Vallei (won 82-5), Montagu (won 20-7), Bredasdorp (won 25-0) and the strong Worcester Gym team (won 6-0 in very rainy conditions). So, Hermies 1st XV remains unbeaten in its league with several exciting matches still to come next term.
The key to their success lies in a very strong and well drilled pack of forwards which includes stalwarts like lock Bernard Jordaan, No.8 Dalton Raaff and juggernaut prop Deacon Chowles, and which enforces its dominance, an exciting backline and solid defence – as the scores show – combined with a strong 2nd XV, which is also unbeaten. The Hermies Under-16 team is also leading the pack, while the Under-14s are set to surprise a few opponents. The future therefore looks bright and everything points to Hermies being a force to be reckoned with for a long time to come.
Five players were members of the Boland Under-18 Elite group. They were Deacon Chowles, Thomas Bednall, Dalton Raaff, Chad Kleinschmidt and Bernard Jordaan. Deacon Chowles was chosen for the Boland Academy Team which will play in Johannesburg, but the others unfortunately missed out on selection.
Three Under-16 players – E Adams, M van Wyk and L Zas – played in the final trials against WP, but failed to make the final Grant Khomo squad.
Under the leadership and coaching of Graham Bellingan, the flagship team has become a group of men to be reckoned with and one which provides yet another good reason to take a trip to Hermanus. Watch some rugby of the highest standard, then pay an unforgettable visit to the whales.
Incidentally an old Hermie, Petrus du Plessis, is currently playing for Saracens, who recently won the Aviva Cup, in the English Premier League.
Fixtures to come:
23 July – Waveren
30 July – Hottentots Holland
6 August – Classic Clash vs Hawston
13 August – Swartland
20 August – Interschools vs Overberg
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