Grey honoured by Cheetahs

2012-05-25 17:31

Johannesburg - Grey College will be honoured in a match between Welsh Heineken Cup team, the Cardiff Blues, and the Free State Cheetahs on August 4 in Bloemfontein.

The school, which has one of the greatest rugby pedigrees in the country, has produced more than 35 Springboks in its prestigious history.

The match will be played in memory of Sir George Grey, founding father of Grey College in Bloemfontein in 1855.

Rugby promoter Willem Strauss, who organised the match, on Friday said that he was impressed with the esteem the school enjoyed at an international level during his negotiations with the Blues.

"Grey is a national asset and all of our Super Rugby franchises have old-Grey boys playing for them," said Strauss.

"The entire Cheetahs team practically consists of ex-Grey’s and the Stormers have Joe Pietersen and Tiaan Liebenberg.

"The Sharks have Bismarck and Jannie du Plessis, as well as Paul Jordaan while Flip van der Merwe, Deon Stegmann and Francois Venter represent the Bulls.

"In the Lions team we have CJ van der Linde and Alwyn Hollenbach.

"The Springbok squad on the 2010 year-end tour also had a strong Grey flavour when 10 were selected.

"Eight of the 10 featured in the match against Scotland."

Cheetahs coach Naka Drotske is another former College pupil, and is one of a long line from his alma mater who played for the Springboks.

Among the Grey Springboks are Ollie le Roux, Francois Steyn, Ruan Pienaar and Heinrich Brussow.

The Cardiff Blues also have a Grey connection with former Springbok centre Pieter Muller turning out for the Welsh side on 84 occasions.

The Blues have been the Wallabies’ Achilles heel on tour, beating the Australians on six out of seven occasions over the last century.

They have also beaten the Springboks on one occasion.

Nine players from the Cardiff outfit, including Wales' captain Sam Warburton, have been included in the Welsh team to tour Australia next month.

The squad that will play the Cheetahs will be accompanied by the IRB Player of the Millennium, Gareth Edwards.

British and Irish Lions centre Jamie Robberts, who has not been included in the Wales touring squad, will make his return to the field against the Cheetahs.