Following a highly successful start to the UP 2017 sporting calendar in the first semester, the juggernaut that is TuksSport has been tempered, if only momentarily, as the result of a brief hiatus as students and athletes alike return from the mid-year recess.
Expectations, however, have not been quelled as Varsity Sport begins again in relentless fashion with the return of Varsity Football this month. 2017 has proved to be an unforgettable year for most sporting codes at the University of Pretoria, as the university’s trophy cabinet continues to fill up at an alarming rate. Success for UP in the first half of the year came with victories in the Varsity Athletics, Varsity Cup and Varsity Hockey tournaments.
Athletes participating in sporting codes and tournaments throughout the second semester of the year will similarly be looking to contribute towards what is shaping up to be an unparalleled level of success for the UP. With preparations having occurred throughout the year and pre-season training now at an end, Varsity Football will be the first sporting code to return. The competition will get underway on July 27, with the tournament marked as the fifth instalment.
Varsity Netball will return for its fifth season, as the Tuks women squad look to break an extended period of misfortune in the competition. The competition will get underway in September, as Tuks ladies will be hopeful for 2017 to be the year the team finally claims their first Varsity Netball Championship. The team will be looking to put the most recent disappointment of the 2016 campaign behind them, after completing the season unbeaten only to fall at the final hurdle to Pukke in the final, 55-56.
In addition to the two showpiece events for the remainder of the 2017 season, the TuksArchery winter challenge, as well as the NG Provincial Indoor tournament, both get underway in mid-August. This comes following the Autumn championships in which individuals shot both provincial and national qualification scores.
The mid-year interval is now at an end, and students once more fill the campuses of the university, as the sport calendar is once more in full tilt. What’s to come from the remainder of the calendar year remains to be seen. For all that is yet to come, the second half of the year promises to be anything but dull.
Illustration: Michal Linden.