New Varsity Cup champions will be crowned this year after Tuks lost in a dramatic final round before the semi-finals next week.
Tuks were overhauled by three-time champions Maties who scored five tries after half-time in Stellenbosch to win 41-24 and set up a semi-final clash with Cape rivals UCT.
In a nail-biting final round of league action there were wins for Pukke and UCT who will host the two semi-finals next week, with Pukke coming from behind to beat UJ 24-20 in Potchefstroom and UCT too strong for Wits who lost 25-5 in their last Varsity Cup match before they drop back down to the Varsity Shield next year.
The North-South clash in Stellenbosch was effectively a quarterfinal, and a match-winning performance from Maties flyhalf Robert du Preez inspired the home team as they handed UP-Tuks their third consecutive defeat to knock them out of the competition.
The Maties team is now building momentum for a potential semi-final challenge. The Maties will face UCT on 24 March at UCT Rugby Fields , Cape Town while Pukke will play against NMMU. The final will take place on 7 April.