Premier Interschools is set to bring some exciting and top class matches for the 2022 season. Following a very stop-start feeling to the last two seasons, the anticipation ahead of this year’s Premier Interschools encounters are reaching fever pitch.
Once again 12 rugby derby matches will be featured from 9 April to 27 August 2022. This season will include 13 different schools over a dozen matches. Premier Interschools is happy to welcome back all the old friends who have been part of the tournament since inception. This season will also see the launch of Premier Interschools Netball which consists of 9 Netball derbies which will be broadcast live on SuperSport and SuperSport Schools.
Paul Roos vs Grey High School - 09/04/2022 @Grey High School
We kick off the Premier Interschools season in the friendly City of Gqeberha when the Maroon Machine takes on local boys Grey High School in their annual interschools fixture. Having last won in 2017, Grey High will be looking for a win to catch up on the lead Paul Roos has. The last 10 years have seen Grey High won 4 and Paul Roos with 6 wins. However, the Paul Roos boys is never an easy game and Grey PE will have to be at their best to walk away with a win. Expect a close fought cracker of a game.
Afrikaans Hoër Seunskool (Affies) vs Paarl Gimnasium - 23/04/2022 @ Affies
The second game for the season is a real mouthwatering derby as two giants from the North and South come together for their 4th official Interschools. Before this annual fixture was introduced in 2017, the two schools did not regularly get to play each other and only played each other on the odd occasion at festivals. Since the first time they met in 1967, they have played only 19 games in 55 years against each other with Paarl Gim winning 11, Affies winning 6 and two draws. Affies is defending their reputation on home soil and it will not be an easy ride for the team from Paarl.
Paarl Gimnasium vs Paul Roos - 07/05/2022: @Paarl Gim
Paarl Gimnasium features again in the 3rd game of the season when they play host to Paul Roos. This could be a happy return for the maroon machine to Paarl as they have won their last encounter away against Paarl Gim in 2018 and not having been able to play in 2020, it was their last visit to the famous Kriel Oval. This is a rare feat indeed as the Paarl team doesn’t lose often and at home is almost impossible to defeat. The rumour around the winelands is that Gimnasium might have one of their best teams in years and will be very difficult to contain. Paul Roos though, will always be up for the challenge and will definitely lay their bodies on the line for a win.
Grey College vs Paarl Boys’ High - 4/05/2022: @Grey Bloem
Grey College will host the 4th edition of Premier Interschool when they take on old rivals Paarl Boys’ High in Bloemfontein. The most consistent No 1 ranked rugby school will again pack quite a punch this season. The mighty Grey will look to dominate once again over their Paarl rivals as the last 10 years have been very even with Grey winning 5, Paarl Boys’ winning 4 and one draw. The team from Paarl being the only one in the country the last 10 years to give Grey a good run for their money and between them they have taken the no 1 rank spot 9 times with Grey again slightly ahead 5 to 4. The Paarl Boys team will be welcoming back their very successful coach Sean Erasmus after his stint coaching with the Lions and the Paarl team will hope that Erasmus brings back his magic touch to Bloemfontein.
Paul Roos vs Paarl Boys’ High - 21/05/2022 @Paul Roos
One-week later Paarl Boys features again in our 5th match when they travel down the road to Stellenbosch to take on Boland neighbours Paul Roos. This match is always a highlight of the season as both teams like to run the ball at every opportunity and no quarter inch is given. Not having played for 2 years and with Paul Roos only on the winning side 3 times out of the last 10 encounters, they would love to repeat the drubbing they gave Paarl Boys in 2018 at Markotter to get some more wins under the belt. There is a new air of expectancy at the Markotter grounds as Paul Roos invested heavily in infrastructure and players and now boasts one of the most modern and advanced training facilities of any school in the country. With an excellent coaching structure also in place, they are the team to watch over the next few years.
Grey College vs Monument High School - 28/05/2022 @Grey Bloem
A new Premier Interschool’s fixture debuts on 28 May when Grey College host the Krugersdorp outfit of the mighty Monnas. Most of their previous encounters have been at neutral grounds during rugby festivals and have only met 7 times in the last 10 years with Grey winning 5, Monnas winning 1 and one draw. Monument is known for their hard and direct approach and under their current coaching staff, the team will once again be highly competitive. Having last clashed in 2018 at u/14 level both teams will have changed somewhat and be unknowns to each other.
Bishops vs Rondebosch - 1/06/2022: @Bishops
Premier Interschools travels back to the beautiful Cape for one of the oldest derbies around when Rondebosch meets Bishops at the latter’s Piley Rees grounds. Arguably one of the most beautiful school grounds in the country with Table Mountain as backdrop, the Piley has become an iconic ground for visiting teams. Rondebosch would love to repeat their final game of 2019 when they beat their oldest rivals on home turf. The 2019 season was also a milestone year for Bishops when the racked up their 101st win against Rondebosch in the first of the two encounters of the season. With Rondebosch currently sitting on 77 wins and the derby last played in 2019, they will do their utmost to close the gap in total games won.
Maritzburg College vs Afrikaans Hoër Seunskool - 23/07/2022 @Maritzburg College
After the June school holiday break, the focus moves up to KZN with the big match between Maritzburg College and Affies. The regular rivalry started in 1996 and they met twice in 2011. This will be the 26th interschools match between the two schools. Affies have the better record overall and have won 22 of these encounters to Maritzburgs’s 3. For many years, Maritzburg College's rugby has been characterised by the rugged qualities and outstanding support work of its forwards, the hard running and punishing tackling of its backs and an eagerness to move the ball at every reasonable opportunity. Most notable, however, is the fierce determination and spirit typifying College teams and imbuing them with an indomitable will to win. Affies is famed and regarded as one of the best rugby schools in South Africa. It has delivered many Springbok players in the past and continues to supply loads of talent in the SA Schools and SA Academy sides. Affies also has many players at all provincial levels of rugby. This will be a match of strength up against spirit, an exciting prospect for any lover of schoolboy rugby.
Paarl Boys’ High vs Paarl Gimnasium - 30/07/2022 @Faure Street Stadium, Paarl
From one great interschool derby to the next! The 9th match of the season features the greatest rivalry of them all in local schoolboy rugby. Paarl Boys’ High versus Paarl Gimnasium. The Galpille against the Bloedworse, South vs North. A whole town divided for one week into two definitive camps. You are either Blue and White or Gold, Maroon and Green. The passion that goes with this rugby derby is unbelievable and for more than 100 years the matches have been so closely fought that the average winning margin is just 4 points. This is truly one of the few matches that is unpredictable, and the boys give it them all for 70 minutes. When the final whistle blows, there will be nothing left on the field but blood, sweat and tears, be it in ecstasy over a win, or despair over a loss. The unusual events of 2020/21 had this fixture not being played for only the second time in a 105-year history. Let’s hope 2022 can bring the full fixture with all the razzmatazz that goes with it to full fruition.
Maritzburg College vs Glenwood High School - 13/08/2022 @ Maritzburg College
The Premier Interschools 10th match for the season moves to the last outpost for a very traditional derby between Glenwood and Maritzburg College at Colleges’ famous Goldstones field. The first match between the two schools was played in 1921 at Glenwood, which was won 5-0 by Glenwood. College dominated the earlier exchanges and had their current winning margin thanks to great teams during the 50’s, 60’s 70’s and 80’s. Since the late 90’s Glenwood has developed into a real rugby powerhouse and have been so dominant the last 10 years that College could only manage one win and 2 draws in the 18 games played thus far. The biggest victory for College over Glenwood was 61-13 at College in 1995. While the biggest victory for Glenwood over College was 57-12 at Kings Park in 2015.
Paul Roos vs Grey College - 20/08/2022: @ Paul Roos
The second last match of the season cannot get any better than the huge derby between Paul Roos and Grey College. As with most big derbies, there have been a 2-year gap since the last time these two great rivals and institutions clashed and anticipation for the match is high. The maroon machine’s last win against Grey was in 2015 at home and they will be confident that they can repeat that feat in 2022. This is a big derby for the schools with old boys from all over coming down to Stellenbosch and a weekend of rivalry from the golf courses to the pubs ensues. This game is also the last for both teams and the players leaves nothing on the field, giving their all that one last time. A spectacle of rugby indeed! Will the Stellenbosch faithful see the Jolla Bolla once again on Markotter after a Grey game?
Boland Landbou vs Oakdale - 27/08/2022: @ Boland Landbou
The big interschool derbies just keep on rolling on in August and our last edition brings on the farmers clash between Boland Landbou from Paarl and Oakdale from Riversdale. These two schools regularly produce teams of outstanding quality from a very small player pool. This all comes down to the commitment of these players to their team and to their school. They are rarely out of the top 20 rankings and have produced numerous Craven week players for their two provinces. Their Interschools is usually a very close affair with neither team having a clear upper hand. The last 10 years proves this as both teams have won 5 games so far, the last being played in 2019. Oakdale would love to come upset the applecart in Paarl as they have lost the last 2 encounters and would like nothing better than to stop the rot in their rivals own backyard.