Despite their superior position on the log – they are in third place – UJ know the dangers of taking their opponents lightly, particularly after recent wins by the sixth-placed Wits against NWU-Pukke and NMMU-Madibaz.
Coach Werner Janse van Rensburg is preparing his troops for an intense battle against a team they last faced in the Varsity Cup in 2014, earning a narrow win.
“They are a team in good form and with a great attitude,” he said. “Their approach will force us to step up a further five per cent from our previous performances.”
The UJ coach said he would be urging his players not to get ahead of themselves, knowing that anything can happen in this competition.
“Playing at home will not necessarily give us any edge because you have to learn to perform under all sorts of conditions in the Varsity Cup.”
After suffering two losses early in the season, UJ continued to impress with their fourth win in succession when they beat UCT 40-12 in Cape Town this week.
It was the outcome of the team executing their game plan to near perfection, Janse van Rensburg said.
“We had a plan of how to approach the extreme wind conditions at UCT,” he said. “We were grateful that most of it worked effectively on the day and the players must be credited for their positive attitude.
“The challenge was to handle the lineouts in the wind and the guys stayed calm during this high pressure scenario.”
However, he remained cautious about their prospects in the tournament.
“We still need to get another win to qualify (for the play-offs) and our only focus at this stage is on trying to get a third win in a row at home this year. The rest will look after itself.”