There will be a Change of Guard for the third edition of the World Schools Festival that will be hosted by the Afrikaanse Hoër Seunskool of Pretoria next year. Affies as the school is affectionately known as, will celebrate their centenary next year.
Next year's festival will headline Affies' centenary celebrations and will take place from 24 to 28 March in the Jacaranda City. "We are extremely excited to host the World Schools Festival as part of our centenary celebrations," said Jaco Koch, head coach of Affies.
Four new schools will take part in the festival - Maritzburg College, Pretoria Boys' High and King Edward VII. All of them close rugby friends of Affies through the years. Oakdale Landbou will also take part again after missing out during last year's festival after being one of the attendees during the inaugural World Schools Festival at Paarl Boys' High back in 2018.
Teams that won't make the trip to Pretoria to attend the festival again are Paarl Gimnasium, Boland Landbou and Glenwood High School of Durban. The two invitational team's, World Schools Select and SA Invitation, also won't be making an appearance at the festival.
Maritzburg College produced world class flyhalves like Keith Oxlee, Joel Stransky, Butch James and Peter Grant who all represented the Springboks in their illustrious careers. Stransky en James was coincidentally also the Springboks' pivots when they were crowned World Champions in 1995 and 2007.
Other Springboks from the school includes Philip Nel (captain of the 1937 Springboks), Andy van der Watt and Jeremy Thompson.
Pretoria Boys' High is not only Affies' neighbours in Pretoria, but also their traditional rivals. The Candies produced World Cup winning captain, John Smit. Other internationals includes Chiliboy Ralepelle (South Africa) and Brian Liebenberg (France).
King Edward VII is the alma mater of Bok hookers Malcolm Marx and Scara Ntubeni. The school also produced former international players like Bryan Habana and Joe van Niekerk.
Grey College of Bloemfontein, Paul Roos Gimnasium of Stellenbosch, Monument of Krugersdorp, SACS of Cape Town and Hilton College will all be making the trip to Pretoria to add to the prestige of the World Schools Festival.
The organisers are in progress of finalising the international schools that will be attending the World School Festival.
The annual Francois Swart Rugby Week (for u15 teams) will also be hosted by Affies during the same period. Some of the matches will be played across the road at Loftus Versfeld.