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Action galore as Saints Invitational draws top talent from around SA

By Avuyile Sawula , in Water Sports | Featured Water Sports | News , at 2023-10-25

All eyes will be on St Stithians College from Thursday when the school hosts its prestigious annual Saints Water Polo Invitational. The action continues through until Sunday, when the finals take place.

The tournament, which promises to be one of the most competitive of the season, will see 40 teams, boys and girls, duelling for the honours.

It’s the 29th edition of the event, and it will see the Saints’ senior teams testing themselves against leading sides from throughout South Africa, and even beyond its borders.

The girls’ side is drawn in Group D alongside Zimbabwe’s Chisipite Senior School, Collegiate Girls High from Gqeberha, Diocesan School, and Kingsmead College.

Collegiate and DSG, from Makhanda, are the favourites to top the pool, after impressive showings by both at the Clarendon Stayers Tournament.

The St Stithians’ boys’ team, on the other hand, should expect to progress from their group. They’re one of the seeded sides and face a Grey College team that has struggled in recent tournaments. St Andrew’s College, though, should pose a stiff challenge after showing that they’re capable of mixing it up with the best in both the Clifton and SACS tournaments. Jeppe and Reddam House Constantia are the two underdogs in the group.

SACS aiming for a third title

The inclusion of the South African College High School (SACS) team in the event might be intimidating to some because SACS has excelled in recent months against the best teams in South Africa.

At the end of September, they won the Clifton Water Polo Tournament, defeating their rivals, Paul Roos, 7-6 in the final.

A week later, SACS hosted their inaugural Hussar Grill Water Polo tournament, which welcomed a rich collection of the country’s top water polo-playing schools, including, among others, Rondebosch Boys High, Northwood, Grey College, Hilton College, Clifton College, St David’s Marist Inanda, St John’s College and Selborne College.

On their road to the final, SACS were beaten 4-2 by Clifton – the only loss they suffered across the two tournaments – and they drew 1-1 with Bishops, but they won the remainder of their games, including victories against St Stithians, Grey High School, Kearsney College, Jeppe, Wynberg, St Alban’s, Grey College, St David’s, and Paul Roos in the final, which they won 6-3.

One of the Cape Town side’s strengths is its ability to get out of the blocks quickly. They’ve showcased a proactive mindset, especially in key matches, to chase the first goal aggressively, and then to quickly build upon that foundation. With a solid defence, it’s a tough ask for the opposition to come back from there.

SACS open their campaign with a tough outing against familiar opposition when they take on Bishops. They next face Pretoria Boys High, before tackling Michaelhouse on day two. They finish their group assignments against King Edward VII on Friday at 16:10.

While SACS will carry the tag of “favourites”, they will be wary of the challenge posed by a number of schools in the other groups.

Clifton, who won the KZN Top 10 Tournament, and finished third in the both the Clifton and SACS events, will also have something to prove in Johannesburg. They carry a strong tradition of excellence into the tournament,

Rondebosch and Bishops, both from Cape Town, will also have designs on the title, while the two sides from the Eastern Cape, St Andrew’s College and Grey High School, will surely embrace the “underdogs” tag.

The boys’ section has an early 07:00 start, with King Edward VII fronting up to Michaelhouse, followed by Rondebosch Boys against St Benedict’s and Clifton versus St Alban’s College.

 𝗖𝗟𝗔𝗦𝗦 𝗼𝗳 𝟮𝟬𝟮𝟯 | 𝗡𝗢𝗠𝗜𝗡𝗔𝗧𝗜𝗢𝗡𝗦

SuperSport Schools is excited to announce the launch of “The Class of ’23” a 2-hour special to premier at 7 pm on the 16th of December featuring the 500 school and youth athletes who truly lit up the stage this year as well as our announcement of the 30 boys and girls who will make up our inaugural “Class of ’23”.

This special will have numerous repeats as well as be backed by a significant on-air and social/digital promotional campaign.

We invite you to be a part of this journey by nominating unforgettable moments, outstanding athletes, and inspiring coaches. Your participation will help us recognize and showcase the true stars and stories of 2023.

Submit your nominations by completing the following form – https://bit.ly/SSClassof2023

 Country’s best female schools in action

The girls’ section of the tournament will also see some of the country’s finest talent on display, with many of the participants having proved through the course of the season that they’re among the best in South Africa.

Durban Girls College, Collegiate, St Mary’s Waverley, Clarendon High School for Girls, and Diocesan School for Girls (DSG) are expected to lead the charge for the top places.

Gqeberha’s Collegiate recently proved their class at the Clarendon Stayers, where they were beaten by the hosts in the final, going down to a last-second goal.

The action promises to be exhilarating, with the groups evenly matched.

Group A should generate some heat, especially when Durban Girls College, Pearson High School, and St Mary’s meet. Reddam House Helderfontein and St Dominic’s Catholic will also want to get in on the action.

Clarendon High School is, without a doubt, expected to dominate group B. They’re up against Reddam House Bedfordview, Reddam House Constantia, St Anne’s, and St Peter’s College. The East London school’s extensive experience of tournament play should stand them in good stead.

Among the other participating schools are Zimbabwe’s Chisipite Senior School and Crawford International College Lonehill. Kingswood College will also fly the flag for Makhanda at St Stithians, while Rand Park High and Kingsmead College are part of a strong Gauteng contingent of challengers.

The action gets underway with Hilton’s St Anne’s Diocesan School facing Reddam House Bedfordview. In the Olympic South Pool, Durban Girls College take on Pearson High School, before the Olympic North Pool plays hosts to a clash between Crawford Lonehill and Herschel Girls School.

The fixtures start from 07:50.

The groups are:

Girls:

Group A: Durban Girls College, Pearson High School, Reddam House Helderfontein, St Dominic’s Catholic School for Girls, St Mary’s Waverley.

Group B: Clarendon High School for Girls, Reddam House Bedfordview, Reddam House Constantia, St Anne’s Diocesan, St Peter’s College.

Group C: Crawford Lonehill, Herschel Girls School, Kingswood College, Rand Park High, Roedean School.

Group D: Chisipite Senior School, Collegiate Girls High School, Diocesan School for Girls, Kingsmead College, St Stithians Girl’s College.

 

Boys:

Group A: Clifton College, Reddam House Helderfontein, St Alban’s College, St David’s Marist Inanda, St John’s College.

Group B: Afrikaans Hoer Seunskool (Affies), Grey High School, Hilton College, Rondebosch Boys High, St Benedict’s College.

Group C: Diocesan College (Bishops), King Edward VII, Michaelhouse, Pretoria Boys High, South African College Schools (SACS).

Group D: Grey College, Jeppe Boys High, Reddam House Constantia, St Andrew’s College, St Stithians Boys College.

Fixtures:

Day 1: Girls

Main Pool:

07:50- St Anne’s Diocesan College vs Reddam House Bedfordview; 10:20- St Dominic’s Catholic vs St Mary’s Waverley; 11:10- St Stithians vs Collegiate; 12:50- St Peter’s College vs Reddam House Bedfordview; 15:20- Kingswood College vs Herschel Girls; 17:00- Roedean vs Rand Park High; 17:50-St Stithians College vs Chisipite Senior School.

Olympic South Pool:

07:50- Durban Girls College vs Pearson High School; 08:40- DSG vs Kingsmead College; 10:20- Clarendon High School vs Reddam House Constantia; 12:50- Rand Park High School vs Crawford Lonehill; 14:30- St Mary’s Waverley vs Durban Girls College; 15:20- Collegiate vs DSG; 17:00- Reddam House Constantia vs St Peter’s College.

Olympic North Pool: 

08:40- Crawford Lonehill vs Herschel Girls School; 10:20- Roedean School vs Kingswood College; 12:00- Pearson High School vs Reddam House Helderfontein; 12:50- Kingsmead College vs Chisipite Senior School; 14:30- St Annes Diocesan vs Clarendon High School; 17:00- St Dominic’s Catholic vs Reddam House Helderfontein.

Day 2:

Main Pool:

07:50- Clarendon High School vs St Peter’s College; 10:20- St Dominic’s Catholic vs Pearson High School; 11:10- St Stithians vs Kingsmead College; 12:00- Durban Girls College vs Reddam House Helderfontein; 12:50- St Anne’s Diocesan vs St Peter’s College; 17:00- Herschel Girls vs Roedean School; 17:50- St Stithians College vs DSG.

Olympic South Pool:

07:50- St Mary’s Waverley vs Reddam House Helderfontein; 08:40- Collegiate vs Chisipite Senior School; 10:20- Reddam House Constantia vs Reddam House Bedfordview; 12:50- Herschel Girls School vs Rand Park High; 14:30- St Mary’s Waverley vs Pearson High School; 15:20- Collegiate vs Kingsmead College; 1700- St Anne’s Diocesan vs Reddam House Constantia.

Olympic North Pool: 

08:40- Kingswood College vs Rand Park High School; 10:20- Roedean School vs Crawford Lonehill; 12:50- DSG vs Chisipite Senior School; 14:30- Clarendon High School vs Reddam House Bedfordview; 15:20- Kingswood College vs Crawford Lonehill; 17:00- Durban Girls College vs St Dominic’s Catholic School.

Boys:

Day 1:

Main Pool:

07:00- King Edward VII vs Michaelhouse; 08:40- St John’s College vs St David’s Marist Inanda; 09:30- St Stithians vs Jeppe Boys High; 12:00- Michaelhouse vs Pretoria Boys High; 13:40- St David’s Marist Inanda vs Clifton College; 14:30- St Andrew’s vs Jeppe Boys High; 16:10- St Stithians Boys vs Grey College.

Olympic South Pool:

07:00- Rondebosch Boys High vs St Benedict’s College; 09:30- SACS vs Bishops; 11:10- St Alban’s vs Reddam House Helderfontein; 12:00- Reddam House Constantia vs Grey College; 13:40- Rondebosch Boys High vs Grey High; 16:10- SACS vs Pretoria Boys High.

Olympic North:

07:00- Clifton vs St Alban’s College; 07:50- St Andrew’s vs Reddam House Constantia; 09:30- Hilton College vs Grey High; 11:10- Affies vs St Benedict’s College; 13:40- Bishops vs King Edward VII; 15:20- St John’s College vs Reddam House Helderfontein; 16:10- Hilton vs Affies.

Day 2:

Main Pool:

07:00- Bishops vs Pretoria Boys High; 08:40- St John’s College vs St Alban’s College; 09:30- St Stithians vs Reddam House Constantia; 13:40- St David’s Marist Inanda vs St Alban’s College; 14:30- Jeppe Boys High vs Reddam House Constantia; 15:20- Clifton College vs St John’s College; 16:10- St Stithians College vs St Andrew’s College.

Olympic South Pool:

07:00- Grey High vs Affies; 09:30- Michaelhouse vs SACS; 11:10- Reddam House Helderfontein vs Clifton College; 12:00- St Andrew’s vs Grey College; 13:40- Grey High vs St Benedict’s; 16:10- SACS vs King Edward VII.

Olympic North Pool:

07:00- St David’s Marist Inanda vs Reddam House Helderfontein; 07:50- Grey College vs Jeppe Boys High; 09:30- St Benedict’s vs Hilton College; 11:10- Rondebosch Boys vs Affies; 12:00- King Edward VII vs Pretoria Boys High; 13:40- Bishops vs Michaelhouse; 16:10- Hilton vs Rondebosch.

Avuyile Sawula
error: Sorry ol' chap, those shenanigans are not permissible.