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Super Rugby | Johannesburg
15:05 (GMT) | 30-04-2016
  • 81
Stay with us as we go straight to Newlands where the Stormers host the Waratahs
  • 80
The ball goes into touch as Vito tries to send it along the wing and the referee blows the final whistle. FULL TIME
  • 79
The Lions at the half way after the line-out and they move into the 10 meter. van der Walt tries to go alone and he halted. The horn sounds but the Canes play on and the turnover is there
  • 78
Cronje forcing his way past three players and finally assists it back. The ball roles into touch after a tackle as the pace of the game slows.
  • 77
Janse van Rensburg with a ncie carry forward and the Lions move forward but then the ball is lost again by the home team who seem to be out of sync. Scrum at the half way
  • 75
The Lions with some good passing in a tight area on their right wing but it's just fumbled at the last and last forward. Scrum at the 10 of the Lions
  • 74
Scrum inside the 22 of the home team now
  • 73
Barrett tries a sneaky kick forward but Bell is there to stop the runner
  • 72
The Lions showing signs of exhaustion as Kriel drops another pass with pressure being applied. Scrum at the 22 of the hosts
  • 71
Barrett with another 2 points. Canes running far away with the fixture now
  • 69
Scrum at the 10 for the Canes. Gibson-Park with a good run after the scrum catching the Lions on the blind side. He hands it over to Julian Savea who scores another TRY
  • 68
The Lions looking for a bonus losing point now perhaps as they press forward this time. Penalty at the 10 of the away team
  • 66
Barrett ensuring those points to make the score 43
  • 65
The Canes in a good position after the scrum but the turnover is there but they squander possession again. Dane Cole with some space and he turns on the gas. He finds a good offload and Tavae-Aso picks it up for his first TRY of the game
  • 63
Line-out at the 22 of the home team for the home team. The Lions decide to play out of their own half but can't make it out of the 22. The referee blows for a knock-on against the hosts
  • 62
The Canes at tcenter field now looking for a gap to squeeze through but the Lions more organised after the break. Jane attempts a kick forward but it goes into touch
  • 61
van der Walt misses the conversion
  • 60
The Lions moving the ball up field but with seemingly no plan in mind. They find space down field however and that allows them some space to create something with Tecklenburg. Kriel gets the final pass after a patient build up and he scores the TRY
  • 58
Line-out for the hosts at the 22 of the away team. They try to move forward in the maul but make no ground as the Canes hold firm
  • 57
The Lions lose the ball and Barrett clears. Solid defence by the Canes.
  • 56
Janse van Rensburg with a fine carry forward giving it to Combrinck who manages a few meters of his own. The Lions make it all the way to the 5 of the Canes.
  • 55
Scrum at the half way and the referee calls for some assistance with the "sand pit" as he halts play.
  • 54
The referee blows immediately after the scrum for a penalty to the hosts. Medical staff entering the field to assist Jantjies who appears to be injured. He decides he is okay to play but the call comes and he makes his way off the field
  • 53
Line-out at the half way now and the Lions make an attempt at the maul but the Canes drive them back. Penalty to the visitors. Scrum at the mid field
  • 52
de Klerk with a boot upward after the line-out. van der Merwe making a few meters forward with his strength but the Canes get possession and clear.
  • 51
Julian Savea with the run down the wing on his left but his final pass forces his team mate into touch.
  • 50
Barrett clears the ball into touch at his own 10 and the start their attack with a kick forward by Perenara. Janjties clears his lines and Woodward does the same
  • 48
The Lions with a scrum at the 22 of the away team after the ball was lost forward post reset. Van der Merwe making some ground by powering through the defence but the referee blows for a penalty.
  • 46
Jantjies adds the extras
  • 45
Perenara fumbles the ball after the line-out and the Lions form an aggressive line inside the 22 of the away team but the clearance comes. Van der Walt picks it up and the Lions putting in the work with some good passes. Mapoe with the final touch and run as he gets the TRY
  • 44
The Lions making some ground finally and inside the away team's half but they lose possession. The Canes clear and the Combrinck kicks it into touch at hte 22 of the Canes
  • 42
Jantjies gets the ball and clears from inside the 5 . The Canes come again now at the 22. The Lions feeling pressured in the early minutes of the second half
  • 41
Barrett gets the second half underway and the Lions playing the ball out of their own half when the referee blows for offside. Penalty to the Canes at the 22 of the home team. Barrett sends it into touch at the 5. The cross the line after the throw but the referee blows. Scrum at the 5 now

Half Time

  • 40
The reset sees the Lions attempt desperately to pull some points back before half time as the horn goes. The Lions with the turnover at the half way and the kick forward sees it bounce into touch. HALF TIME
  • 39
Barrett with his first challenging angle of the evening and he misses it this time
  • 38
The Canes with swift movements after the line-out catching the hosts off gaurd. Goodes with a beastly run over the line to score the TRY
  • 37
de Klerk tries for a clever kick forward but he overcooks it and it bounces into the dead ball zone. The Canes take it quickly. Jantjies finds it in the depths of his half and clears into touch at his own 22
  • 35
Both teams kicking to clear their lines. The Canes change the trend and move forward from their 10 and into the Lions'half. The whistle is blown for a penalty to the home side though and Jantjies kicks, but it doesn't find touch
  • 34
Barrett makes no mistake from 10 meters out
  • 33
Line-out at the 10 of the Canes now. The Lions making good ground in the maul and the interception is there again by Cory Jane. He runs straight down the middle to score the TRY
  • 31
The Lions trying to play it out of their half after the reset. The referee blows for a penalty to the Lons and Jantjies kicks into touch
  • 30
Jantjies fails to add the extra 2 points
  • 29
Janties sends it into touch as the referee calls it back after the TMO decision. The Lions still at the 5 now pushing forward and they make it over the line in the maul. Credited to van der Merwe
  • 28
Line-out for the Lions and the Canes shoving the hosts back in the maul. The Lions play it and get another penalty. They take it swift and Mapoe makes it over the line to score the try. TMO isbeing called upon for a try/no try decision. The try is not awarded
  • 27
The Lions with a penalty in a good position after the reset. Jantjies sends it into touch at the 5 meter
  • 26
Barrett with another opportunity to add points and he does get 3 points from the penalty kick
  • 25
The Canes with a fumbled past and Mapoe with a good interception but the referee decides he was offisde
  • 24
Scrum reset
  • 23
Scrum at the 22 of the home team
  • 22
van der Walt kicks it forward but not by much. The Canes tackle and get it. They immediately move forward and enter the 22 with menacing pace. The Lions regain possession and the referee blows
  • 21
Scrum at the 10 of the Canes. Perenara slips it in and Barrett with another kick forward but it goes into touch this time. Line-out ath te half way
  • 20
The Lions trying to play past the half way but the Canes hold a firm line. The turnover is there in the 8th phase
  • 19
Barrett with his thrid kick from inbetween the posts, he secures it
  • 18
Jane scores a TRY after the scrum. The referee calls for a TMO decision and it is still awarded.
  • 17
Line-out for the hosts at the mid field. They fall under immense pressure from the away team now with a ton of momentum. Barrett kicks a smart ball forward and de Klerk gets it before the 5 meter but he is jumped on by three Canes players. The whistle sounds for a scrum at the 5 of the hosts
  • 15
Line-out for the Lions after the reset at the half-way area. The Canes with a turnover and they move it up field but the referee calls play back
  • 14
Barrett makes no mistake from an unmissable position
  • 13
The Lions showing no signs on conceding by pushing forward again but a wonderful interception by Proctor sees him go all the way to plant it between the sticks giving Barrett and easy kick. TRY
  • 11
Barrett ensures the 2 extras
  • 10
Ardie Savea making space up field and he finds Cole who gives a solid offload. They keep moving forward disrupting the Lions' defence and Julian Savea finds it this time to score the TRY
  • 9
Line-out at the 22 of the Canes now. Perenara gets it and clears. The Lions press forward now at the half way line
  • 8
Skosan tries to move through three players but doens't make it. The referee blows for a penalty to the Canes and Barrett clears their lines
  • 7
Scrum at the 5 meter up field. Scrum reset
  • 6
Lions with a line-out inside the 22. They move forward to the 5 and de Klerk sends it to Jantjies who almost slips through but he is just clipped and brought down inside the 5
  • 5
The referee calls them back for collapsing the maul as the hosts played under advantage.
  • 4
The Lions take their line-out and move forward with the maul, only at the 22 now but making ground fast. They move the ball down field to Skosan and he runs into traffic
  • 3
De Klerk slips and misses the ball but recovers but the Canes punish his mistake. They opt to clear into touch
  • 2
The Lions attempting to shove thier way into the 22 but the Canes not having any of it. The referee blows to halt play due to a knock-on by the away team
  • 1
The Canes start playing from their 22 with Vito and they progress slowly, but the referee blows for a forward pass in the 8th phase. Scrum inside the 10 meter of the visitors
  • 0
Marius van der Westhuizen blows and Jantjies boots it deep
  • -3
The Hurricanes are the first to exit the tunnel and enter the playing field
  • -5
The Canes with one change in their lineup from last weeks game while the Lions have three changes from last weeks fixture
  • -10
Elton Jantjies and Beauden Barrett have been contributing nicely to the points their teams scored respectively, but Jantjies, who is currently in astounding form, is the favourite to outplay his opposite number
  • -20
The Lions have lost their last six encounters against the Canes in Super Rugby
  • -30
Welcome to The City of Gold. Home of the Lions, who are preparing to host the Canes
Mc lions logo 85
Mc hurricanes logo 80x50
  • 1 Dylan Smith
  • 2 Armand van der Merwe
  • 3 Pieter Scholtz
  • 4 Andries Ferreira
  • 5 Franco Mostert
  • 6 Jaco Kriel
  • 7 Warwick Tecklenburg
  • 8 Warren Whiteley
  • 9 Francois de Klerk
  • 10 Elton Jantjies
  • 11 Courtnall Skosan
  • 12 Howard Mnisi
  • 13 Lionel Mapoe
  • 14 Ruan Combrinck
  • 15 Jaco van der Walt
  • 16 Ramone Samuels
  • 17 Corne Fourie
  • 18 Jacques van Rooyen
  • 19 Ruan Ackermann
  • 20 Cyle Brink
  • 21 Ross Cronje
  • 22 JW Bell
  • 23 Rohan Janse van Rensburg
  • 1 Reg Goodes
  • 2 Dane Coles
  • 3 Jeffery Toomaga-Allen
  • 4 Vaea Fifita
  • 5 Michael Fatialofa
  • 6 Brad Shields
  • 7 Ardie Savea
  • 8 Victor Vito
  • 9 TJ Perenara
  • 10 Beauden Barrett
  • 11 Julian Savea
  • 12 Vincent Tavae-Aso
  • 13 Matt Proctor
  • 14 Cory Jane
  • 15 Jason Woodward
  • 16 Motu Matu'u
  • 17 Chris Eves
  • 18 Loni Uhila
  • 19 Blade Thomson
  • 20 Callum Gibbins
  • 21 Jamison Gibson-Park
  • 22 James Marshall
  • 23 Willis Halaholo
Mc article deon davids kings media 800


Thu, 28 Apr 2016 22:10

IN THE SPOTLIGHT. Jan de Koning looks at the Saturday matches in Part Two of Super Rugby's Round 10.

It is a day that could well be labelled 'dance of the desperate'.

More than just a couple of teams are desperate for victories as the tournament heads into the second half of the season.

The defending champion Highlanders and the Brumbies - who go head-to-head in one of the southernmost cities in the world, Invercargill - are both in the midst of a bad slump.

The Highlanders and Brumbies have both won five of their eight games and while that leaves the Highlanders fourth in an intense New Zealand group, the Brumbies are second in Australia, one point behind the Rebels.

The Brumbies "certainly need a lift," according to coach Stephen Larkham.

However, they will be without injured star Joe Tomane and captain Stephen Moore, who has a calf muscle injury.

The Rebels, who have replaced the Brumbies as the No.1 Australian side, could cement their position when they travel to Auckland to play the Blues, who are at the bottom of the New Zealand group, in the opening match of the day.

Of the leading South Africa sides, the Lions are at home to a Hurricanes unit, who blew a chance last week to topple the Chiefs.

The Hurricanes, despite having an impressive pack, have had plenty to work on ahead of playing the Lions in Johannesburg.

Beauden Barrett has lost his kicking radar and they were plagued by handling errors against the Chiefs.

The Lions head the Africa Two conference and with a six-point buffer over the second-placed Sharks.

The Stormers, the premier South African side and Africa One conference leaders, will fancy their chances when they host an out of form Waratahs team badly in need of a big win.

In the two other matches of the day there is plenty of desperation, but little more than honour at stake.

The Reds, in 14th place with one win, host the Cheetahs (in 13th place with two victories) in Brisbane.

The Jaguares, who have lost seven on the trot after a win in Week One, are at home to a Southern Kings side that also have only one win, but are last in the 18-team tournament.

We look at the Saturday, April 30, matches below!

The Rebels, who take on the Blues for just the second time at Eden Park, are searching for their first win in Auckland - following losses at North Harbour Stadium in Round 10, 2011 (23-40) and at Eden Park in Round 13, 2013 (32-36).

The two sides have split the four previous Super Rugby meetings with the home side winning on each occasion.

"I think Auckland is one of the tougher places to play," Rebels hooker James Hanson said in an interview on the team's website.

"That's the one thing about this group, it's a group of young guys that don't have baggage with previous years, so for us we're just going over there and having a crack.

"It's really important, we haven't beaten a New Zealand team yet this season.

"We really want to go over there and put in a good performance and go into that second bye with another win."

Blues hooker and captain James Parsons spoke of the team's desire to be more consistent - with three wins in sevens starts, but have yet to win back-to-back games.

"We are realistic about where we sit in the season," he said of their 12th place on the standings.

"We are looking to tighten up our skills around our attacking half and make sure we turn the opportunities into points.

"We want to set a good platform up front, to set our backs alight.

"However, we also need to defend well.

"Championships are won on defence and if we can hold them out and score points, while applying pressure, hopefully we can come out on the right end."

The Blues are at the bottom of the New Zealand table, but Rebels coach Tony McGahan is taking no notice of their past results.

"The Blues in the New Zealand conference would probably be first or second in the other conferences, but they find themselves down the bottom in theirs because it's so good," McGahan said.

Earlier this year, the Blues ran in nine tries to one when they defeated the Rebels 59-7 in a pre-season trial in Auckland.

"We're under no illusion of the challenge we face against a really good side that towelled us up in a pre-season trial match earlier this year so we need nothing less than our best 80-minute performance on Saturday," McGahan said.

Previous results:
2015: Rebels won 42-22, Melbourne
2013: Blues won 36-32, Auckland
2012: Rebels won 34-23, Melbourne
2011: Blues won 40-23, North Harbour

Prediction: These teams have traded blows four times, alternating two wins apiece with all four games being won by the home side on the day. Off the back of a 23-18 win against the Sharks in Round Eight the Blues will be looking for consecutive wins for the first time since Round 17, 2014. The Blues have won five and drawn one of their last eight matches against Australian opposition and are undefeated in their last four home matches against teams from Australia. The Rebels have won three matches away from home so far this season, the equal most of any Australian team, and a fourth away win would make it their most wins on the road in a season in Super Rugby history. The Rebels have travelled to New Zealand for 10 games, including two against the Blues, and have won only once (versus the Crusaders in Round One, 2015). The Rebels have had a good season by their standards, but they will have to be on top of their game to stay first in Australia. We sense and upset - the Blues by 12 points.


Blues: 15 Lolagi Visinia, 14 Rieko Ioane, 13 George Moala, 12 Piers Francis, 11 Tevita Li, 10 Ihaia West, 9 Bryn Hall, 8 Steven Luatua, 7 Tanerau Latimer, 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Josh Bekhuis, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu/Hoani Matenga, 3 Charlie Faumuina, 2 James Parsons (captain), 1 Sam Prattley.
Replacements: 16 Quentin MacDonald, 17 Nic Mayhew/Namatahi Waa, 18 Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 19 Akira Ioane, 20 Kara Pryor, 21 Billy Guyton, 22 Matt McGahan, 23 Melani Nanai/Matt Duffie.

Melbourne Rebels: 15 Jonah Placid, 14 Sefa Naivalu, 13 Reece Hodge, 12 Tamati Ellison, 11 Cam Crawford , 10 Jack Debreczeni, 9 Nic Stirzaker (captain), 8 Adam Thomson, 7 Sean McMahon, 6 Jordy Reid, 5 Lopeti Timani, 4 Luke Jones, 3 Jamie Hagan, 2 James Hanson, 1 Toby Smith.
Replacements: 16 Pat Leafa, 17 Cruze Ah Nau, 18 Tim Metcher, 19 Sam Jeffries, 20 Colby Fainga'a, 21 Ben Meehan, 22 Kotaro Matsushima, 23 Sione Tuipulotu.

Referee: Craig Joubert
Assistant referees: Glen Jackson, Brett Johnson
TMO: Ben Skeen

The Brumbies have taken an unusual route to Invercargill - from Canberra, with a connection in Sydney to Christchurch, then a stopover in Queenstown, for a training day and then bus down from Queenstown on the Friday afternoon.

However, the Brumbies are determined to make the best of this outing, bond and reverse the mistakes made in the heavy loss to the Crusaders last week.

Lock Sam Carter said too many errors cost the side and there's been an emphasis on improving at training this week.

"We were very disappointed with how we played last Sunday," Carter said in an interview on the Brumbies website.

"Crucial errors at crucial times. You give a New Zealand team, especially the Crusaders, that many turnover opportunities, they're going to capitalise on it.

"There would've been maybe one mistake by each player. If you add them up its 15 mistakes across 80 minutes. It's tough to come back from.

"We just can't do that and give them that much opportunity so we just need to tighten up our skills and make sure we deliver."

Like all New Zealand sides, the defending champion Highlanders are not scared to kick the ball and do indeed have some great kick-chasers.

They are also very abrasive in the forward exchanges.

The Brumbies' last two encounters with Kiwis sides have seen them cough up 40 points or more in heavy defeats.

"The Highlanders are very strong at their breakdown and they defend well," he said.

"They're going to be up for it this weekend especially their forward pack.

"I know if we train well this week and stick to what we want to do and don't make any errors then I'm sure we can get a good result."

Carter says he is also looking forward to having David Pocock back on the field. Pocock received a three-week suspension following the Brumbies loss to the Chiefs at GIO Stadium earlier this month.

"Obviously he's one of the best players in the world and to have him come back this week coming off a two-week break he'll be fresh and ready to rip in," Carter said.

"I love playing with him so it's going to be good having him out there again, just the experience he brings."

Recent results:
2015: Brumbies won 31-18, Canberra
2013: Brumbies won 30-19, Dunedin
2012: Brumbies won 33-26, Canberra
2011: Highlanders won 26-20, Invercargill
2010: Brumbies won 31-3, Canberra
2009: Brumbies 33-31, Dunedin

Prediction: The Highlanders have lost seven of their last eight matches against the Brumbies including the last three. The Highlanders have conceded 94 points against the Brumbies across their last three encounters, 68 of which were scored in the opening stanza. The Brumbies have earned a win in three of their last four excursions to New Zealand to face the Highlanders with a six-point loss in 2011 the only blemish in that span. The Highlanders have now lost consecutive matches by a single point; they have not lost three matches in a row in Super Rugby since a stretch of four losses ended early in 2015. The Highlanders have been involved in 24 games decided by a single point in their history, the most of any team in Super Rugby, and never before has a team been involved in three consecutive games decided by a single point. This is indeed a contest between two very desperate teams, which makes predicting an outcome an almost futile exercise. Home ground advantage do count for something, so we'll go for a Highlanders win by five points.


Highlanders: 15 Ben Smith (co-captain), 14 Jack Wilson, 13 Malakai Fekitoa, 12 Rob Thompson, 11 Patrick Osborne, 10 Lima Sopoaga, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Liam Squire, 7 Shane Christie (co-captain), 6 Elliot Dixon, 5 Tom Franklin, 4 Alex Ainley, 3 Josh Hohneck, 2 Ash Dixon, 1 Daniel Lienert-Brown.
Replacements: 16 Greg Pleasants-Tate, 17 Craig Millar, 18 Siosiua Halanukonuka, 19 Joe Wheeler, 20 Dan Pryor, 21 Fumiaki Tanaka, 22 Hayden Parker, 23 Matt Faddes.

Brumbies: 15 Aidan Toua, 14 Nigel Ah Wong, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Matt Toomua, 11 Robbie Coleman, 10 Christian Lealiifano (captain), 9 Tomás Cubelli, 8 Jarrad Butler, 7 David Pocock, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Tom Staniforth, 3 Ruan Smith, 2 Josh Mann-Rea, 1 Allan Alaalatoa.
Replacements: 16 Robbie Abel, 17 Scott Sio, 18 Leslie Leulua'iali'i-Makin, 19 Rory Arnold, 20 Blake Enever, 21 Jordan Smiler, 22 Joe Powell, 23 James Dargaville.

Referee: Nick Briant (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand), Kane McBride (New Zealand)
TMO: Aaron Paterson (New Zealand)

These are two sides who are in the process of rebuilding after having asked their respective coaches to leave mid-season - the Cheetahs late last year and the Reds in the early stages of 2016.

Cheetahs coach Franco Smith said they are looking at their own game, rather than worrying about the scoreboard.

Reds co-interim coach Nick Stiles, in contrast, said they are "desperate" for victories.

He said the desire among the players to not just compete, but to win is "part of their DNA".

The Reds were run down by a rampant Stormers side in Cape Town last Saturday, giving up an eight-point lead in the last 20 minutes, going down 22-40.

Stiles made no attempts to hide the fact that the late fade is an area the team will be keen to amend in front of their loyal home fans this weekend.

"The inability to finish off in those last 10 or 15 minutes is something we were very unhappy with," Stiles said.

The Reds are eager to replicate their fantastic performance from their last outing at Suncorp Stadium, when they upset the defending champions, the Highlanders, three weeks ago.

However, Stiles knows that despite their lowly position on the ladder, Saturday's opponents are no easy-beats.

"You saw last week against the Rebels in that first half the dangerous and lightning speed they've got in their backs is something that if you turn the ball over too much they will punish you," he said of the Cheetahs.

"Like all South Africans, they've got a big forward pack, good at set piece, so we've got to be on our game in those areas and it's going to be a tough game."

There is of course, apart from the overall contest, and intriguing head-to-head to look forward to - the second row battle between veteran Wallaby Rob Simmons and young Springbok Lodewyk de Jager.

Simmons, a 60-Test stalwart, said simply improving is not good enough for the Reds and that matches have to be taken by the scruff of the neck when the result is in the balance.

"In just about every game this year we have seen moments from the Reds where we are a very good Rugby side," Simmons said.

"That's not good enough. We have to be able to close out games.

"Applying ourselves better for the full 80 minutes is the important thing. We can start doing a number on teams if we do that."

Recent results:
2015: Reds won 18-17, Bloemfontein
2014: Reds won 43-33, Brisbane
2013: Cheetahs won 27-13, Bloemfontein
2011: Reds won 41-8, Brisbane
2010: Reds won 31-10, Bloemfontein
2009: Reds won 22-3, Brisbane

Prediction: The Reds have won five of their last six matches against the Cheetahs, outscoring the South African side by 70 points across that span. The Cheetahs have won just one of their last six matches in Australia, and they've never beaten the Reds there. The Reds have scored just one try in the final 20 minutes of their games this season, fewer than any other side. Torsten van Jaarsveld has won 91 throws so far this season, the most of any player (success of 86 percent). The Reds have a scrum success of 95 percent so far this season, the best of any team, the Cheetahs' is the least effective scrum in the competition (73 percent). The Reds have improved since the change in coaching staff earlier this season, while the Cheetahs - while showing promise at times - have been a touch inconsistent. We think the Reds will win by 10 to 15 points.


Reds: 15 Karmichael Hunt, 14 Junior Laloifi, 13 Samu Kerevi, 12 Anthony Fainga'a, 11 Eto Nabuli, 10 Jake McIntyre, 9 Nick Frisby, 8 Curtis Browning, 7 Liam Gill, 6 Hendrik Tui, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Ben Matwijow, 3 Greg Holmes, 2 Andrew Ready, 1 James Slipper (captain).
Replacements: 16 Saia Fainga'a, 17 Sef Fa'agase, 18 Sam Talakai, 19 Cadeyrn Neville, 20 Michael Gunn, 21 James Tuttle, 22 Duncan Paia'aua, 23 Ayumu Goromaru.

Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Nico Lee, 12 Michael van der Spuy, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Shaun Venter, 8 Henco Venter, 7 Uzair Cassiem, 6 Paul Schoeman, 5 Lodewyk de Jager (captain), 4 Carl Wegner, 3 Nicolaas van Dyk, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld, 1 Charles Marais.
Replacements: 16 Jacques du Toit, 17 Luan de Bruin, 18 Johan Coetzee, 19 Francois Uys, 20 Teboho Mohoje, 21 Tian Meyer, 22 Niel Marais, 23 Michael van der Spuy..

Referee: Ben O'Keeffe (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Will Houston (Australia), Nic Berry (Australia)
TMO: George Ayoub (Australia)

Hurricanes assistant coach John Plumtree spent enough time in South Africa to know just how tough it is to win on the Highveld - and that was before the Lions added an expansive dimension to their game.

Not surprising then to hear Plumtree speak of the need to sharpen up on defence.

"We allowed two or three soft tries, which is unlike us considering the heights we reached against the Rebels, so that was probably the big disappointment," he said of last week's heartbreaking one-point loss to the Chiefs.

Plumtree made no secret of the fact that he feels the Lions present a huge challenge on their home turf.

"The Lions play from all over the field, so defensively we're going to get tested, and up front they're pretty rugged," he said in an interview on the Hurricanes' website.

"We've got a lot of respect for this Lions side and it's well organised by Johan Ackermann and Swys de Bruin, so we've got to make sure we're on the money with what we want to do."

The Lions are on top of the Africa Two conference after winning six of their eight matches this season - with the Stormers being the only South African team to have gained more competition points in 2016.

"They play a pretty good brand of footy and they've been very successful this year in what they've been doing," Plumtree said.

"I think we can expect them to come at our set piece, they've shown over the course of the year their scrum is a force to be reckoned with and their line-out's not too bad either.

"I think that will be a focus point for them and something we need to be aware of.

"We're trying to nail down our preparation so it's perfect for the boys and they feel as good as they can.

"We know we're going to need the whole squad at the weekend in terms of the 23 and it's going to be another high intensity game."

Lions coach Johan Ackermann also spoke of the "massive challenge" this game presents, given that the Hurricanes will be desperate not to lose any more ground on the tournament leaders - the Chiefs and Crusaders.

Like the Lions, the Hurricanes are a very "attack-minded" side with quality all over the park.

Both teams pointed out that this expansive game can only work if the forwards provide them with a solid platform to attack from.

Recent results:
2015: Hurricanes won 22-8, Johannesburg
2012: Hurricanes won 30-28, Johannesburg
2011: Hurricanes won 38-27, Wellington
2010: Hurricanes won 33-18, Wellington
2009: Hurricanes won 38-32, Johannesburg
2008: Hurricanes won 38-12, Wellington

Prediction: The Hurricanes have won eight of their nine meetings with the Lions, a defeat in 2007 the only blemish in this run. In each of the Lions' last 12 games the half-time results has mirrored the full-time result, including a 19-all draw with the Stormers in Round 17 last season.  The last time the Hurricanes lost a game to a South African team was a one-point loss to the Stormers in Round Three, 2014. The Hurricanes have lost fewer than one line-out per game so far this season, no team averages fewer, and their line-out success of 93 percent is the best in the competition. The Lions are the only team in the competition yet to concede a try from opposition possession originating from a scrum. This is another tough call. How will the travel affect the Hurricanes? Can the Lions overcome the injury-enforced absence of fine front row forwards? Again, in such a tight game, you go with home ground advantage, but the Lions won't win by much - the margin will be single digits.


Lions: 15 Jaco van der Walt, 14 Ruan Combrinck, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Howard Mnisi, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Francois de Klerk, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Warwick Tecklenburg, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Pieter Scholtz, 2 Armand van der Merwe, 1 Dylan Smith.
Replacements: 16 Ramone Samuels, 17 Corne Fourie, 18 Jacques van Rooyen, 19 Ruan Ackermann, 20 Cyle Brink, 21 Ross Cronje, 22 John-Wessel Bell, 23 Rohan Janse van Rensburg.

Hurricanes: 15 Jason Woodward, 14 Cory Jane, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Vince Aso, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Victor Vito, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Brad Shields, 5 Michael Fatialofa, 4 Vaea Fifita, 3 Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, 2 Dane Coles (captain), 1 Reg Goodes.
Replacements: 16 Motu Matu'u, 17 Chris Eves, 18 Loni Uhila, 19 Blade Thomson, 20 Callum Gibbins, 21 Jamison Gibson-Park, 22 James Marshall, 23 Willis Halaholo.

Referee: Marius van der Westhuizen
Assistant referees: Jaco Peyper, Ben Crouse
TMO: Johan Greeff

The Stormers are sitting pretty at the top of the Africa conference, but in stark contrast the Waratahs are clinging to a faint hope of making the Super Rugby play-offs.

The men from Sydney have just three wins, but each victory have been followed by two defeats - leaving them outside the top 10.

Their trip to Newlands, after the 49-13 demolition of the Western Force last week, will be their first match of the season outside of Australia.

Waratahs assistant coach Chris Malone said playing the Stormers at Newlands is one of the "great experiences" a player can have.

"We will expect them to be immensely physical, as all South African teams are, so our preparation catered for that," Malone said.

"They have a real willingness to play also, so it will be tough and a great challenge and one that we are looking forward to."

The Stormers will also field their first-choice midfield combination, Springboks Juan de Jongh and Damian de Allende, for the first time this season - following De Allende's lengthy time on the sideline due to an ankle injury sustained while playing club rugby in Japan and concussion suffered by De Jongh.

It will certainly give them additional strike power in the backline.

Stormers coach Robbie Fleck readily admits that the transition from a defence-orientated team to one with an expansive game is far from complete.

"I am happy with our progress thus far," Fleck said.

"There are certainly glimpses of the fearless rugby that we have been trying to get across, but there have been moments where we have let ourselves down a little bit.

"We still got a way to go, both in terms of the campaign, but also our own growth.

"I am very happy with the signs that are coming out of the squad.

"We are playing a brand that we set out to do at the beginning of the campaign, but it is by no means a finished product yet. We still got a lot of hard work ahead of us."

Fleck said the Stormers will need to be solid on defence against a Waratahs team that can be devastating if they get it right on the day.

"Our approach this year is that we want to play with more ball in hand," the Stormers coach said.

"I would like to think we could do a bit more in this game, but when the opportunities do present themselves we need to take those."

Recent results:
2015: Stormers won 32-18, Sydney
2014: Waratahs won 22-11, Cape Town
2013: Waratahs won 21-15, Sydney
2012: Stormers won 19-13, Cape Town
2010: Stormers won 25-6, Cape Town (semifinal)
2010: Stormers won 27-6, Cape Town

Prediction: The Stormers have won four of their last six matches against the Waratahs including a 32-18 victory in their last encounter. Only one of the Waratahs' last five matches against South African opposition has been decided by a points difference of fewer than two converted tries. The Stormers have won 16 and drawn one of their last 21 matches on home soil against Australian opposition in Super Rugby. The Stormers have the best opening quarter points differential, scoring 45 points more than they've conceded in the opening 20 minutes of games so far this season. Kurtley Beale has made 2.2 offloads per game so far this season, the second most of any player in the competition behind SP Marais (3.7). The Stormers must fancy their chances of another crucial win - by 10 to 15 points.


Stormers: 15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Juan de Jongh (co-captain), 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Schalk Burger, 7 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 6 Nizaam Carr, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Rynhardt Elstadt, 3 Frans Malherbe (co-captain), 2 Mbongeni Mbonambi, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Replacements: 16 Siyabonga Ntubeni, 17 Oliver Kebble, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 JD Schickerling, 20 Siyamthanda Kolisi, 21 Louis Schreuder, 22 Brandon Thomson, 23 Huw Jones.

Waratahs: 15 Andrew Kellaway, 14 Reece Robinson, 13 Israel Folau, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Rob Horne, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Jed Holloway, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Dean Mumm, 5 Will Skelton, 4 David Dennis, 3 Tom Robertson, 2 Hugh Roach, 1 Paddy Ryan.     
Replacements: 16 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 17 Jeremy Tilse, 18 Angus Ta'avao, 19 Sam Lousi, 20 Wycliff Palu, 21 Matt Lucas, 22 David Horwitz, 23 Matt Carraro.

Referee: Mike Fraser (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Paul Williams (New Zealand), Cwengile Jadezweni (South Africa)
TMO: Shaun Veldsman (South Africa)

Neither team were very happy with last week's performances - the Jaguares going down to the Sunwolves and the Southern Kings being run ragged by the Lions.

Jaguares captain Agustín Creevy spoke of the "importance" of this week, the need for the Argentinean franchise to get a 'W' on the board for the first time since Round One.

He complained about the repetition of their errors, which cost them so dearly week after week.

"There is no reprieve, as we have a new opponent in just a few days," Creevy said.

"We have to work twice as hard and ensure we eliminate those errors.

"It is obvious there are no easy games and we have to be prepared for another tough challenge in the Kings."

Jaguares coach Raúl Perez said it was important for the team to get their confidence back if they are to end their run of seven defeats.

Kings coach Deon Davids also spoke this week about making the players accountable for their roles and actions on the field.

Their only win was against the Sunwolves, which last week lowered the Jaguares' colours.

"Our approach has been more player-driven this week," Davids said.

"The players understand that some of the things that happened [in the heavy loss to the Lions] were unacceptable.

"We have been open and honest with each other  and I am hopeful that we will put up a much better performance."

The Kings are expecting a typical Argentinean opponent - a team with solid set pieces.

"They also do enjoy a ball-in-hand game, so we will have to be very alert and aware of what is happening on the field."

Recent results:
These teams have never met before.

Prediction: The Jaguares' solitary Super Rugby win so far came against a South African side in Round One (the Cheetahs), in their other two games against South African teams they have kept them to fewer than 20 points.The Kings have conceded an average of 47.3 points per game in their last six matches against teams from outside of South Africa. The Kings have scored 64.3 percent (nine/14) of their tries in the first half, the highest percentage of any team in the competition. Guido Petti Pagadizaval has won 37 line-outs so far this season, the equal second of any player though he is yet to steal one. The Kings may just be overawed, seeing as it is their first trip to the noisy Vélez Sarsfield stadium, in Buenos Aires. The Jaguares could get their second win of the season - by 12 points.


Jaguares: 15 Emiliano Boffelli, 14 Santiago Cordero, 13 Matías Moroni, 12 Juan Martín Hernández, 11 Manuel Montero, 10 Nicolás Sánchez, 9 Martín Landajo, 8 Leonardo Senatore, 7 Javier Ortega Desio, 6 Tomás Lezana,  5 Tomás Lavanini, 4 Matías Alemanno, 3 Ramiro Herrera, 2 Agustín Creevy (captain), 1 Santiago García Botta.
Replacements: 16 Julián Montoya, 17 Facundo Gigena, 18 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, 19 Guido Petti, 20 Facundo Isa, 21 Gonzalo Bertranou, 22 Jerónimo De La Fuente, 23 Lucas González Amorosino.

Southern Kings: 15 Jaco Van Tonder, 14 Lukhanyo Am, 13 Stefan Watermeyer, 12 Shane Gates, 11 Luzuko Vulindlu, 10 Elgar Watts, 9 Ntando Kebe, 8 CJ Velleman, 7 Thembelani Bholi, 6 Chris Cloete, 5 JC Astle, 4 Steven Sykes (captain), 3 Tom Botha, 2 Edgar Marutlulle, 1 Schalk Ferreira.
Replacements: 16 Martin Ferreira, 17 Justin Ackerman, 18 Jacobie Adriaanse, 19 Stefan Willemse, 20 Aidon Davis, 21 James Hall, 22 Louis Fouche, 23 Leighton Eksteen.

Referee: Stuart Berry
Assistant referees: Federico Anselmi, Juan Sylvestre
TMO: Santiago Borsani

Compiled by Jan de Koning, additional reporting by Agence France-Presse

* Statistical information provided by Opta Sports

Mc article lions v hurricanes match 800

Rampant Hurricanes rout limp Lions

Sat, 30 Apr 2016 16:53

REPORT: The Hurricanes taught the Lions a real lesson when they routed them 50-17 in their Super Rugby Round 10 match at Ellis Park on Saturday.

The seven tries to three victory showed the real chasm that exists between New Zealand and South African teams - not so much on the scoreboard, but more in the intensity and execution of how they play the game.

The Lions looked shell-shocked after conceding a couple of early tries and then lost the plot completely as the visitors ran rampant on the Highveld.

It was a magnificent first-half performance by the Wellington-based that set up the demolition.

The New Zealanders scored five tries before half-time to turn 36-5 ahead and after a spell of second half dominance by the South Africans, the visitors finished strongly.

The Hurricanes succeeded on an Ellis Park stadium pitch that cut up badly in places, forcing ground staff to intervene during the match and make temporary repairs.

It was the Hurricanes' second biggest win of the season, after a 35-point drubbing of Australian side the Western Force and the Lions' heaviest defeat.

Winning with a bonus point thanks to a 7-3 try count, the Hurricanes stayed third in the New Zealand conference and on course for a quarterfinal place.

Despite being overwhelmed, the Lions stayed top of the Africa Two standings, five points above fellow South African side the Sharks.

Hurricanes' dominated the breakdowns and scrums during the first half and were helped by two gift tries after Lions' passes were intercepted.

Wings Cory Jane and Julian Savea scored two tries each and centres Matt Proctor and Vince Aso and prop Reg Goodes one each for the 2015 Super Rugby runners-up.

Flyhalf Beauden Barrett gave a near flawless goal-kicking exhibition, slotting six conversions and a penalty from eight shots.

Hooker Armand van der Merwe, centre Lionel Mapoe and flank Jaco Kriel scored a try each for the Lions and flyhalf Elton Jantjies slotted one conversion.

Jantjies, favourite to be the South Africa playmaker in a three-Test home series against Ireland during June, was below par and retired injured on 55 minutes.

After early Lions' pressure, the floodgates opened on 11 minutes when superb handling between backs and forward sent Savea over and Barrett converted.

Proctor intercepted a careless pass from Lions skipper and No. 8 Warren Whiteley to dot down unopposed and Barrett added the extra points again.

A Jane try was converted by Barrett, who also kicked a penalty for a 24-0 lead after 27 minutes.

Van der Merwe scored a try off a driving maul for the Lions only for the Wellington outfit to cross the try-line twice more before half-time via Jane and Goodes with Barrett converting the first.

Mapoe and Kriel tries narrowed the gap to 36-17 before the Hurricanes stamped their authority again and Aso and Savea scored converted tries.

Man of the match: Warren Whiteley, Jaco Kriel, Armand van der Merwe and Franco Mostert were all good value for the Lions. You can nominate just about the entire Hurricanes team, but the real difference was in the cohesive effort of the Hurricanes pack as a unit and how they blew the Lions away in the opening half. That is why they get our award.

The scorers:

For the Lions:
Van der Merwe, Mapoe, Kriel
Con: Jantjies

For the Hurricanes:
J Savea 2, Proctor, Jane 2, Goodes, Aso
Cons: Barrett 6
Pen: Barrett


Lions: 15 Jaco van der Walt, 14 Ruan Combrinck, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Howard Mnisi, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Francois de Klerk, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Warwick Tecklenburg, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Pieter Scholtz, 2 Armand van der Merwe, 1 Dylan Smith.
Replacements: 16 Ramone Samuels, 17 Corne Fourie, 18 Jacques van Rooyen, 19 Ruan Ackermann, 20 Cyle Brink, 21 Ross Cronje, 22 John-Wessel Bell, 23 Rohan Janse van Rensburg.

Hurricanes: 15 Jason Woodward, 14 Cory Jane, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Vince Aso, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Victor Vito, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Brad Shields, 5 Michael Fatialofa, 4 Vaea Fifita, 3 Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, 2 Dane Coles (captain), 1 Reg Goodes.
Replacements: 16 Motu Matu'u, 17 Chris Eves, 18 Loni Uhila, 19 Blade Thomson, 20 Callum Gibbins, 21 Jamison Gibson-Park, 22 James Marshall, 23 Willis Halaholo.

Referee: Marius van der Westhuizen
Assistant referees: Jaco Peyper, Ben Crouse
TMO: Johan Greeff

Armand van der Merwe (29min), Lionel Mapoe (45min), and Jaco Kriel (60min)
Julian Savea (10min), Matt Proctor (13min), Cory Jane (18min), Cory Jane (33min), Reg Goodes (38min), Vincent Tavae-Aso (65min), and Jamison Gibson-Park (69min)
Elton Jantjies (46min)
Beauden Barrett (11min), Beauden Barrett (14min), Beauden Barrett (19min), Beauden Barrett (34min), Beauden Barrett (66min), and Beauden Barrett (71min)
Beauden Barrett (26min)
VENUE Johannesburg
REFEREE Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa)