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Rugby And Netball South Africa Tour

Published by Churcher's College on Tuesday 28th of November 2023

Over the summer holidays, 69 students and eight staff set off from Churcher’s for their southern hemisphere adventures.


London to Cape Town via a quick stop at Istanbul. We were warmly greeted by the staff at The Presidents Hotel with some traditional South African snacks of milk tart and koeksisters. On the first day, we hoped to venture up Table Mountain but, unfortunately, it was too windy - but we still managed to get some great photos!


It was then onto our first fixtures; the boys against Melkbosstrand High School and the girls against Milnerton High School which unfortunately saw losses against very highly ranked sides.


The next day, we headed off to the Kayamandi Township for a hard-hitting look at life there, but one that also showed hope for the future. Our tour guides were amazing and helped us to understand some of South Africa’s past and how many South Africans currently live. An afternoon of beach rugby was enjoyed by the boys while the girls spent a fantastic afternoon at their second fixture at Jan Van Riebeek High School. In the evening we headed off to Gold restaurant for a cultural and culinary experience of great food, amazing live music, face painting and dancing! A real highlight so far.


On our third day, we finally managed to conquer Table Mountain, followed by our next set of games at Bosmansdam High School, which saw our first wins of the tour!


A couple of fabulous days followed for our tourists: starting with an early morning zipline adventure, located in the Elgin Valley. Scaling the rugged Hottentots Holland mountains in the Cape Nature reserve, the Cape Canopy Tour isn’t for the fainthearted! 11 separate zip lines descend the gorge, zigzagging over the steep rocky outcrops, waterfalls and river below. Then off to Robben Island to try and understand South Africa’s past a bit better. Our guides were ex-political prisoners and told their story of the struggles against apartheid and the nationalist government of the time.


More training for both teams in the foothills of Table Mountain in preparation for their afternoon games and a tough set of fixtures for both netball and rugby against Durbanville High School. The students were up for it but the hosts just had too much firepower. The netball girls kept it extremely competitive but the rugby boys had a tough afternoon, particularly with coming up against a No. 8 who plays for South Africa juniors.


On our final day, we headed north to Aquila Game Reserve, arriving in time for a lovely lunch and dip in the spa, followed by an evening game drive. We saw four of the Big Five: elephant, buffalo, rhino and lion. Although we missed out on the elusive leopard it was more than made up for with some other great spots: hippos, springboks, elands, ostriches, zebras, and giraffes. Dinner for the evening was cooked on glowing outdoor firepits whilst everyone enjoyed a spot of stargazing to round off a super day and an excellent trip away.


This was a truly fantastic trip and massive thanks go to all the pupils who really were a credit to Churcher’s College.


Mr Skirving, Head of Rugby

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