By Jamie Kawalsky
This article is exclusive to the Online Edition 1 of VARSITY News.
If you know anything about the Ikey Tigers, then you’ve definitely heard about this fine gentleman. If you haven’t heard of him, then you have definitely seen him plastered over all of SA’s favourite rugby magazines and social media. This multitalented athlete truly represents everything UCT Rugby stands for; talent, charisma and brains. Everyone, meet James Tedder– affectionately known as ‘Jamo’.
Tedder was scouted by one of UCT Rugby’s scouts while he was playing for the Sharks in Kwa-Zulu Natal. He explains that his contract was coming to an end and playing for Varsity Cup offers the exposure he was looking for, as well as the opportunity to study further at UCT. While the rugby side of things became ever so slightly less intense, Tedder explains that the jump from UNISA to UCT was a lot more stressful than anticipated.
Regarding playing for the Sharks versus UCT, Tedder explains that the training is very similar but the lack of pressure makes it that much more enjoyable – “The atmosphere and the vibe of Varsity Cup is a lot more enjoyable”
Our superstar actually didn’t take rugby that seriously in high school but rather focused on cricket, making the provincial side every year. It was only when he decided that he preferred rugby in matric that he started to take it seriously; making the provincial side and then playing for the Sharks.
I think we have the case of a small-town boy with big dreams here, because Tedder hails from Greyton, a small town two hours from Durban. So, it is no surprise that his hobbies include riding horses, farming, fishing and of course riding around the farm on his motorbike. But while Tedder is in the Cape, he enjoys the beach, spending time with his friends and girlfriend (sorry ladies). Tedder lives with three other UCT Rugby guys at the “Ikeys Academy” – a name they gave their own digs. He says that living with the other guys is truly a highlight of playing for UCT.
We better all keep a very close eye on this one because he definitely wants to take his rugby further – which we have absolutely no doubt that he will. Depending on the future of Varsity Cup this season with regards to the global pandemic of coronavirus, we hope we get to see more of this playmaker in due course.