Paramount Garments Rugby Seniors Championship begins

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Old Hararians players celebrate with the winners trophy after their win against Old Georgians RFC last year

The 2023 Paramount Garments-sponsored Harare Province Rugby Championship gets underway at Harare Sports Club on Saturday with defending Champions Old Hararians and fellow title hopefuls aiming to make positive starts to the new season.

Old Hararians will get the new season underway when they face Old Crestonians in a match they will start as favourites as they begin their quest for a third successive title.

The match kicks off at 1040am.

The Old Boys, as Old Hararians are affectionately known, will be eager to continue from where they left off last season when they celebrated a second successive Paramount Garments Harare Province Rugby Seniors Championship after beating Old Georgians RFC 32-24 in a hard-fought final in July last year.

The third match of the day will see the hosts Harare Sports Club taking on an improving Mutare Sports Club, which is desperate to prove that they deserve to be competing against the big boys.

Harare Sports Club, who recently won the season-opening Nedbank Rugby Challenge Cup, will be eager to kickstart their campaign with a dominant victory.

After the conclusion of the domestic matches, the attention will then shift to the major highlight of the afternoon, where the Zimbabwe Goshawks will be hoping for a positive start to their campaign against their regional rivals Namibia, who are playing as the Windhoek Draught Welwitschias.

While Zimbabwe will be playing their first match in this season’s Mzansi Challenge after forgoing their first three matches against South African opposition due to lack of funds, Namibia’s Windhoek Draught Welwitschias have already played times.

The Namibians, who are using the competition to prepare for the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France, have however found the going tough, losing all their matches against Border Bulldogs (26-21), SWD Eagles (31-22) and Valke (48-24).

Goshawks head coach Brendan Dawson yesterday named a youthful matchday squad as he looks to build the depth in the Sables squad ahead of the next phase of the Rugby World Cup qualifiers.

The squad which also features a few experienced players is captained by scrumhalf Hilton Mudariki, who is one of only four players who have been capped at Test levels. The others are loose-head prop Kevin Nqindi, flyhalf Takudzwa Musingwini and eighth man Tonderai Chiwambutsa.

 

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