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24 May 2022 - Principal's Weekly Update

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2022 Old Boys Weekend

Old Boys Day Brings the Whole Community Together

Sometimes we can forget the privilege of having a through school where we can put balance and family values into a day of sport.

I hope everyone felt welcome and a part of the day, and I am immensely proud of the teamwork and hard work that went into hosting on Saturday. It is good to be outside and together again. - Mr Allen van Blerk (Principal)

Game Day vs Kearsney

It was a celebration of schoolboy sport on the Saints campus on Saturday with St Charles College hosting Kearsney and Howick, as well as some teams from Maritzburg College, Merchiston and Cordwalles. The fixtures formed part of the annual Old Boys Weekend and close to 50 games were contested throughout the day, from the U7 age group through to U19. The 1st XV rugby and 1st team hockey encounters were reported on as follows by the head coaches, Petrus du Plessis and Matthew Coombes:

Photo courtesy of Justin Waldman.

St Charles College rugby teams hosted Kearsney for another epic set of fixtures. The history between the two 1st XVs dates back to 1945, with 37 games being played, 3 draws, 18 victories for the Saints and 16 loses. After a few years break, it was an electric atmosphere on the Saints campus when the main game kicked off at 3:15pm. The weather was crisp and allowed for a high paced game. Kearsney managed to score first through center Siso France. The visitors duly converted the try putting them ahead by 7 points. The St Charles College forward pack, who have been powerful this season, scored a driving maul try to go 2 points behind after missing the conversion. What followed was entertaining and physical rugby from both sides. Kearsney scored early in the second half making it 14 – 5. The hosts then replied through another forward dominant maul with tight head prop Sanda-Mantuli Mdledle diving over for the Saints 2nd try, to make it 14 – 12. Kearsney hit back almost immediately by scoring in the corner.

The conversion scraped the upright to give the visitors a 7-point lead. In true St Charles College fashion, the young men in Blue & Gold dug deep and managed to grind up field. The Saints pack secured a lineout on the opposition 22 and drove their opposition pack sending hooker, Matthew Urquhart, over for his second try of the afternoon. Saints’ fullback, Jehan Adonis, under pressure in front of a large crowd, converted the try from the tramlines leveling the scores at 19-all going into the final minutes. Both teams left nothing to chance, throwing their bodies at every loose ball. With time up on the clock, the Saints men chose to attack from deep in their half, Kearsney managed to turnover possession and gain a penalty that handed them the narrow win 22 – 19.

Photo courtesy of Justin Waldman

On the hockey turf, the Saints had a solid start to the morning, winning the U14A game and drawing a 3 – 3 cracker in the U16A game. Kearsney turned the tables at 1st team level, with the visitors starting very well, and had the boys in Blue & Gold on the back foot. Although they were under pressure, the St Charles College team held strong in defence and didn’t give anything away.

As the game progressed it got more even with both teams putting in some good passages of play. Kearsney were more clinical on the day and converted the chances they got with some good short corner play. After the first goal to Kearsney, St Charles College started to chase and got stretched in the mid-field as a result. This shifted momentum and created lots of back and forth play which Kearsney capitalised and scored further goals, while the Saints boys did not as they squandered the chances they worked hard to create. Thanks to Kearsney for joining us on our special day and the 4 – 0 spectacle made for an entertaining game.

Photo courtesy of Martin Ashworth

Prep Rugby vs Howick

On Saturday we enjoyed an outstanding fixture with Howick in celebration of Old Boys Day. After the exciting Sports Assembly on Friday, our boys rose to the occasion and played with courage, determination and pride in front of their families, friends, Old Boys and many of the Senior School who came across to watch.

It was awesome to see our Head Boy, Mark Nagel, inspiring our U9s and U10s, Matthew Urquhart, our 1st XV Hooker running the touch line for the Prep 2nd XV, many of our Senior School brothers making tunnels, playing “water boy” and cheering our champions on from the side.

We thank Howick, our Old Boys, parents and SCC for their efforts on Saturday in making the day such a special one for our Prep boys. – Mr Gregg Cole-Edwardes (Head of Prep Sport)

Grade 0 Dads and Lads

On Saturday morning we were blessed to have the presence of our Grade 0 boys, accompanied by their moms and dads, on campus for a rugby clinic held by our 1st team Prep rugby coach, Mr Kurt Alexander, as well as our Rugby Specialist, Mr Petrus du Plessis.

There were many new skills learnt and even more laughs in what was a wonderful opportunity for our boys and parents to bond on the rugby field.

Grade 1 and 2 Curtain Raiser

For our boys in the Junior Primary, and seemingly many of their fans, the biggest game of the day was their curtain raiser to the 1st XV game. Our boys put on a fantastic display of free-flowing, high intensity rugby. There was everything a spectator could ask for, with last-ditch tackles, spectacular solo runs and some terrific teamwork. Our Prep 1st XV players were even spotted coaching and reffing the Grade 1 and 2 games.

We would like to thank all those that watched the game, it is a moment that won’t soon be forgotten by our Junior Primary boys. - Mr Joel Barron (Junior Primary Sport)

Music Showcase

On Saturday, we hosted a music showcase next to the tuck shop for everyone to enjoy during Old Boys Day.

We started the morning with solo saxophonist, Kanyinsola Bankole (Grade 10), playing some of his favourite pop tunes accompanied by Ms Skorpen on the piano. This was followed by rapper, Kumba Dzomba (Grade 10), showing off two songs from his soon-to-be-released debut album, ‘Till I Reach Infinity.

For the second round of performances our Matric band performed their latest repertoire followed by our staff band, The Department, playing some golden oldies. – Ms Kristen Wepener

Old Boys Association 

The Old Boys Association hosted a “Meet and Greet” Reunion on the Friday evening of Old Boys Weekend and were happy to welcome nearly 100 Old Boys from varying years. It was wonderful to see all ages come together as they celebrated their years at St Charles College, with some classmates having not seen each other for 45 years!

This year we decided on a more informal function which was very much enjoyed by all present. This format made it easier to mingle and chat together while feasting on a finger supper provided by the school. The “Old Boys Closed Golf Trophy” was presented to Blake Mackenzie and Malcolm Ryan and the Auction Glass was “bought” by the Class of 1977 in memory of lost classmates.

Old Boys Day, held on the Saturday, was a huge success with many more Old Boys enjoying the hockey and rugby games throughout the day. The Coach House was a friendly meeting place for Old Boys and friends during the day and after the main match, which wrapped up a very successful and happy weekend.

We are already working on getting many more Old Boys to next year’s reunion and hopefully the word will spread of the very special memorable weekend had by all. Thank you to all Old Boys and friends for their support. – Mrs Gill Sheppard (Old Boys Liaison)

Saints Team of the Week

Old boys’ Day was celebrated in all its glory last weekend by everyone involved. More so, by our U14B rugby team as well as the 4th Hockey team who played excellently on the day. Both teams have been committed and persevered this season.

The U14B rugby team found their rhythm a few weeks ago, and played with a lot of enjoyment, which in turn showed on the scoreboard the last couple of weekends.

The 4th Hockey team, mostly made up of Matrics, inspires week in and week out. To see the team performing so well, even with their exam commitments, is inspiring.

Well done to both teams! Deserving Teams of the Week! – Mr Divan van Wyk (Sports marketing)

KZN Squash

We congratulate Thomas Hardman on being selected for the KZN U13 Squash Squad. This is a great reward for Thomas who has worked hard, and we are incredibly proud of him. – Mr Gregg Cole-Edwardes (head of Prep Sport)

Elevate Education

The Grade 8s attended their second study skills session on Tuesday, presented by Elevate Education. The workshop focused on time management, which I think all the Grade 8s will benefit from, not just this year, but throughout their time at the College.

The entertaining and enthusiastic presenters always ensure that they speak to their audience and that the session is engaging, easy to follow, and enjoyable. The Grade 8s will have their third and last workshop next term which will focus on exam revision. – Mr Murray Cole-Edwardes (Head of Middle School)

Grade 10 and 11 Bands

Our Grade 10 and 11 bands had the opportunity to perform at the St John’s D.S.G. birthday celebration this past Friday evening.

It was wonderful making music with many other schools from PMB. Some of the songs performed included 'Lose Yourself' by Eminem and 'Treasure' by Bruno Mars. We look forward to the music that these groups will be performing in the future! - Ms Heather Skorpen (Music Director)

Strings Lunchtime Concert

Our Saints String ensemble had the amazing opportunity to perform with Epworth High School this week. Two concerts were held, the first at Epworth and the second on the Saints campus this Wednesday at our lunchtime gig. They performed a wide variety of music including Viva la Vida, Naruto anime theme and Sound of Silence. – Ms Heather Skorpen (Music Director)

New Marimbas in the Music Department

Last year we were devastated to learn that our marimbas were damaged during December’s hailstorm. As a result, we haven’t had any marimba bands in our music programme this year – but things are looking up! Last week our brand new set of AMI Marimbas arrived which the boys excitedly unwrapped and set up.

We look forward to preparing for the marimba concerts and competitions coming up this year and starting a new chapter for the marimba bands at St Charles College. – Ms Kristen Wepener