The Matabeleland Rugby Football Board (MRFB) has invited the South African Springboks Legends to play their Zimbabwean counterparts in March next year to celebrate Hartsfield Rugby Ground’s 75 years of existence.
Report by Fortune Mbele Sports Reporter
The MRFB says former Matabeleland player and ex-Springbok coach Ian McIntosh has agreed to bring a team for the match that had been slated for March 9 on a day when five matches have been lined up for the celebrations.
In a statement on Monday, MRFB vice-chairman Sean Robinson said, “Matabeleland Rugby Football Board would like to announce that Hartsfield will be 75 years old in 2013.
“To mark this auspicious occasion, the MRFB has invited the Springboks Legends to play against the Zimbabwe Legends at Hartsfield on the 9th March 2013. Mr Ian McIntosh (Matabeleland rugby player and Springbok Coach) has agreed to send a team to play the Zimbabwe Legends in a game of 10’s. The game will be 20 minutes each way with a break at half time.
“To play Legends Rugby, a player should have played representative Barbarian or Goshawks rugby and should be over the age of 33.”
The Zimbabwean-born McIntosh, who grew up in Matabeleland, served as head coach for the Springboks during the early 1990s.
He never played rugby for Zimbabwe, but was acquainted with coaching in the 1970s under the guidance of the then Welsh Rugby Union coaching director Ray Williams and later took charge of the Zimbabwe national team with his biggest achievement being in charge of the South African national side.
He was enlisted to the Springboks after he hogged the limelight with his legendary Natal team which won their first Currie Cup in their centenary year, 1990.
South African Rugby parted ways with McIntosh before the 1995 World Cup following a string of losses to the All Blacks in New Zealand in mid-1994.
The celebrations to mark Hartsfields’ 75 years of existence will start with a coaching clinic before the Matabeleland Under-20s take on their Botswana counterparts.
That match will be followed by Mat’land vs Botswana before the Mat’land Legends 10s take on the Botswana Legends 10s.
The main match between the Zimbabwe Legends and the Springboks Legends will be played later in the afternoon with the event of the day filmed for television and a highlights package made available for Supersport.
Sables and Young Sables coaches Brendan Dawson and Brighton Chivandire, 2012 Lion Lager National Rugby League finalists Matabeleland Warriors coach Reuben Kumpasa, Adrian Garvey, Gilbert Nyamutsamba, Rusty Labuschagne and Robinson are some of the Matabeleland Legends expected to feature in the Zimbabwe Legends team.