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Cheetahs

FULL-TIME
25     28

Lions

Super Rugby | Bloemfontein
13:05 (GMT) | 25-02-2017
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Stay with us as we go straight to our live coverage of the Kings vs the Jaguares
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FULL TIME
  • 79
The Lions hold the ball back in their own 22 not clearing yet. The ball is sent back to Coetzee just as the horn sounds and the ball is kicked into touch
  • 78
The Cheetahs now the team making any attempt to get forward but the Lions holding firm at their 10. The referee blows for a scrum to the Lions
  • 77
The Lions fail to add the extra 2 point cushion
  • 76
The Lions desperate to find any form of points in the final minutes of the game. They move the ball up field to Cronje and he offloads to Janse van Rensburg who runs the final 20 meters to score the TRY
  • 75
Zeilinga secures the 3 points and gets his team a 2 point lead
  • 74
The maul by the Cheetahs wins them a penalty on the 22 from a wide angle
  • 73
Penalty to the Cheetahs quickly taken by Meyer. The ball turned over and cleared by the Lions. Line-out at the 22 of the away team for the hosts
  • 72
Scrum reset
  • 71
Scrum at the 10 of the Lions for the Cheetahs.
  • 70
The Cheetahs trailing by one. They push forward inside the 10 of the Lions but the visitors turnover. They try to build from their own half. They can't make it out and they boot forward instead. The ball roles into touch passed the try line
  • 68
The referee awards the guilty Cheetahs man, Uys, a yellow card
  • 67
The Lions try for a maul but the Cheetahs push back. The Lions reform their maul and start edging towards the try line. A Cheetahs man dismembers the maul and the referee awards a penalty TRY
  • 66
Scrum for the hosts after the reset. Lions win the scrum and get a penalty. Jantjies kicks into touch at the 5
  • 64
Zeilinga takes another kick from the penalty and adds another 3 points
  • 63
Line-out after the restart kick. The Cheetahs with a driving maul after the throw. Zeilinga in possession but he is brought down and the referee calls for a penalty to the Cheetahs
  • 62
He gets the 3 points
  • 61
The Lions move the ball down field to Coetzee who steps one man before being tugged at the shirt. The referee blows after for a penalty to the Lions. Jantjies will look to add 3 points with a kick
  • 59
The reset kick is fumbled by Zeilinga as it comes down but Swart saves his team mate's bacon. Line-out to the Lions inside their own half
  • 58
Zeilinga eyeing the posts and the ball meaningfully. He takes the kick and adds the 3 points
  • 57
Nche making a decent carry before handing the ball over in the ruck. The Cheetahs at the 22 of the Lions and the referee blows for a penalty to the the hosts
  • 56
The Lions lose out in their own scrum but still maintain possession. The ball is kicked forward and Blommetjies grabs it out of the air and boots it straight into touch. Line-out at the 10 of the Lions for the away team
  • 55
The reset kick is returned and Zeilinga gets it; looking to run a few meters and find some gaps to exploit. The referee blows to stop play after the flyhalf is tackled. Scrum around the mid field
  • 53
Jantjies adds the extras
  • 52
Line-out for the Cheetahs at the 10 of the Lions. The away team win the Cheetahs throw but the ball is fumbled towards the Lions try line and Petersen chases it down. The confusion causes the Lions to escape up field towards Mapoe. The wing runs and offloads to Janse van Rensburg who scores the Lions' first TRY
  • 49
The ball is eventually cleared into touch at the 22 of the Cheetahs.The Cheetahs win a penalty after the throw due to an infringement by Mostert
  • 48
The interception is there by Zeilinga but Janse van Rensburg gets it back. The Lions now at the 5 of the Cheetahs after that quick exchange
  • 47
Lions take a line-out at around the half way. The visitors inside the 22 of the Cheetahs now
  • 46
The Lions pushing forward now, trying to regain the lead they had. In their 6th phase but the turnover is there by the Cheetahs and Blommetjies clears. The referee blows after the ball settles in Lions hands. penalty to the away team and Jantjies kicks into touch
  • 45
He secures the extras. 2 for 2 in the second half
  • 44
Penalty to the Cheetahs at the 10 of the Lions. Zeilinga sets up again for a possible 3 points
  • 43
The reset kick is sent back and forth. Jantjies with the last of the boots that goes into touch in the try area of the Lions. Scrum at the 10 of the Lions
  • 42
Zeilinga adds the extras
  • 41
The Lions try to build from their 10 but the Cheetahs turnover with Rhule who runs a good 25 meters to score the first TRY of the game
  • 41
The second half is underway with a kick from the Cheetahs flyhalf

Half Time

  • 40
The horn sounds. De Klerk sends the ball in the scrum. He gives it to Jantjies and the ball is kicked into touch. HALF TIME
  • 39
Zeilinga gets the ball after the scrum and makes a good few meters but he is tugged and brought down by Coetzee. Scrum at the 10 of the Cheetahs
  • 38
The Cheetahs being put under pressure despite the Lions one man deficit. The referee halts play at the 22 of the hosts for a scrum to the Cheetahs as the ball is lost forward
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Zeilinga takes the penalty and levels the score before half time
  • 35
The Cheetahs building quickly after a throw. Blommetjies squeezes through the gap and makes it to the 5 before being tackled off feet by De Klerk. The referee sends the Lion scrumhalf to the bin
  • 34
Nico Lee passing 2 as the ball is fumbled by his team mate. He gives it to Zeilinga who boots it forward into touch at the Lions' 5. Coetzee tries to clear but the ball is blocked. The ball is finally cleared by the Lions
  • 32
Line-out for the Lions after the reset. The away team move the ball down field but the ball is passed into touch. The referee decides the final pass was forward. Scrum at the half way for the hosts
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Jantjies takes a kick from behind the 10 and he fails to add the 3 points
  • 28
The ball turned over by Nico Lee after De Klerk fumbles the ball in the ruck. The referee calls play back for a dangerous tackle by Schoeman. Penalty to the Lions
  • 27
The Cheetahs move the ball up field and try to build from their half but the ball is lost forward by Swart. Both team guilty of 3 handling errors. Scrum on the half way
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The referee blows for a penalty to the Cheetahs after a foul by Janse van Rensburg. Zeilinga takes the penalty and fails to get the 3 points
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The reset kick is there and the Lions get possession but De Klerk boots it forward. The ball is returned. Lions get the ball and place it down in their try area
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Jantjies decides to take the 3 points with a certain kick from 8 meters out
  • 22
The Lions overthrow but find possession after the ball bounces a couple of times. Skosan almost slipping passed the defence but he moves in field. They move the ball to the center and the referee blows for a penalty to the Lions in front of the sticks
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The Lions win a penalty around the 22 of the Cheetahs. Jantjies kicks into touch at the 5 of the home team
  • 20
He misses his kick and the scores stay level. Jantjies with a decent reset kick. De Klerk sends it back and it's cleared. The Cheetahs have the ball inside their own 22
  • 19
The referee blows for a penalty after the reset kick. The Cheetahs get a penalty around the Lions 10
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Zeilinga sets up from inside the 10 and he levels the score
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The Cheetahs get a penalty; illegal scrummaging by the Lions
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They lose the ball and Jantjies clears under pressure. The Cheetahs come again. Penalty to the hosts. Scrum inside the Lions' 10
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The Cheetahs in possession at the Lions 22 after the reset. Petersen causing trouble for the Lions' defence as he twists and turns
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Jantjies lines up his kick from inside the 22. He opens the scoring for this fixture
  • 12
The Lions building with immense pace now in their 7th phase. The Cheetahs give away a penalty just before the 5. Medical staff appear on the field to treat Mnisi
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The line-out is taken and the ball moved quickly by the Lions but the referee blows again. Another penalty given away by the Cheetahs and Jantjies kicks into touch before the home team 22
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Skosan in possession after the throw in but he loses out Justin Basson. The Cheetahs clear into touch at the Lions' 22
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The referee blows for a penalty as the ball is lost forward. Scrum to the Lions. The scrum holds this time around and the Lions moves the ball up field. The referee stops play again for a penalty to the away team. Jantjies kicks into touch at the half way
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The Lions in possession now trying to make their way into the hosts' half. They opt to kick and the Cheetahs are with the ball now. They kick forward themselves and chase but the Lions clear with Jantjies
  • 5
Penalty to the Lions after the scrum from the Cheetahs collapses again. Jantjies kicks into touch around the half way
  • 4
The pitch causing problems for both teams after the rain. The Lions win a penalty from the scrum. They take it quick but the referee stops play again for a forward pass. Scrum further up from the initial scrum position but still on the 22
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Scrum reset again
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Scrum reset
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Nico Lee picks it up for the Cheetahs after the kick and makes a few meters before being overrun. The hosts with a steady build from their own 10. They get inside the 22 with some clutch offloads. They finally lose out in their 11th phase. The referee blows for a penalty to the Lions as the ball is lost forward. Scrum to the visitors at their 22
  • 0
Quinton Immelman blows and the boot of Jantjies sets off the derby
  • -5
The players exiting the tunnel now
  • -10
Lions captain Whiteley expects the game to expansive, highlighting the Cheetahs improved strength in their scrums and line-out mauls
  • -20
The last 5 fixtures between these two sides have swung in the Lions' favour
  • -30
Welcome to Bloemfontein where the Cheetahs host the Lions
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Cheetahs
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Lions
START LINE UP
  • 1 Charles Marais
  • 2 Torsten Van Jaarsveld
  • 3 Johannes Coetzee
  • 4 Justin Basson
  • 5 Reniel Hugo
  • 6 Uzair Cassiem
  • 7 Teboho Mohoje
  • 8 Paul Schoeman
  • 9 Tian Meyer
  • 10 Fred Zeilinga
  • 11 Raymond Rhule
  • 12 Clinton Swart
  • 13 Nico Lee
  • 14 Sergeal Petersen
  • 15 Clayton Blommetjies
RESERVES
  • 16 Elandre Huggett
  • 17 Danie Mienie
  • 18 Ox Nche
  • 19 Francois Uys
  • 20 Niell Jordaan
  • 21 Zee Mkhabela
  • 22 Niel Marais
  • 23 Rayno Benjamin
START LINE UP
  • 1 Jacques van Rooyen
  • 2 Malcolm Marx
  • 3 Ruan Dreyer
  • 4 Andries Ferreira
  • 5 Franco Mostert
  • 6 Jaco Kriel
  • 7 Ruan Ackermann
  • 8 Warren Whiteley
  • 9 Francois de Klerk
  • 10 Elton Jantjies
  • 11 Courtnall Skosan
  • 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg
  • 13 Howard Mnisi
  • 14 Lionel Mapoe
  • 15 Andries Coetzee
RESERVES
  • 16 Akker van der Merwe
  • 17 Corne Fourie
  • 18 Johannes Jonker
  • 19 Lourens Erasmus
  • 20 Albertus Smith
  • 21 Ross Cronje
  • 22 Harold Vorster
  • 23 Jaco van der Walt
Mc article stormers scrum training 800

SR PREVIEW: Round One, Part Two

Thu, 23 Feb 2017 21:49

SUPER SATURDAY: Wall-to-wall rugby, custom fit. Throw in the fact that it is Round One and you know a few household chores are abound to be left undone.

In this part of our preview, we have some of the most intriguing contests the competition has.

From the opening match, when the Sunwolves take on the defending champion Hurricanes, through to the big north-south South African derby between the Stormers and Bulls.

Sandwiched in between are other tasty snacks such as Crusaders versus Brumbies and Cheetahs against the Lions.

We look at all the Saturday matches!

Saturday, February 25

Sunwolves v Hurricanes
(Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium, Tokyo - Kick-off: 13.15; 17.15 NZDT; 04.15 GMT)

Sunwolves coach Filo Tiatia said the Japanese side have no reason to feel pressure this season, after a chastening first year in Super Rugby.

The Tokyo-based franchise won just one of their 15 games under New Zealander Mark Hammett in 2016, while former Japan coach Eddie Jones called them "embarrassing" after a 92-17 mauling by the Cheetahs.

But Tiatia told AFP the Sunwolves had learnt from that baptism of fire as he prepares for this weekend's season-opener at home to the defending champions, the Hurricanes.

"We're under no illusions," he said.

"A lot of people are saying we're going to get pumped [thrashed] every game," added the 45-year-old, who took over from his countryman Hammett after holding an assistant's role in the team's inaugural season.

"But I don't think we need to feel pressure. The fact of the matter is that we came 18th out of 18 teams last year but there were a lot of lessons.

"Our major focus is to keep learning and keep improving. It's only our second time at the dance."

Tiatia also called for patience as the Sunwolves look to improve on 2016.

"I played five years with the Hurricanes and it took them 21 years to win a championship," said the former back row forward, who twice represented the All Blacks in 2000.

"When a baby's born, you've got to start crawling, then obviously you hope to walk," he added.

"The Sunwolves are still in the infancy stage."

Previous results:
These two teams have never met before

Prediction: It is not a case of who will win, but by how much the Hurricanes will win. We feel the margin will be 30 points or more.

Teams:

Sunwolves: 15 Riaan Viljoen, 14 Takaaki Nakazuru, 13 Timothy Lafaele, 12 Derek Carpenter, 11 Kenki Fukuoka, 10 Hikaru Tamura, 9 Keisuke Uchida, 8 Willem Britz, 7 Edward Quirk, 6 Malgene Ilaua, 5 Sam Wykes, 4 Liaki Moli, 3 Heiichiro Ito, 2 Shota Horie, 1 Masataka Mikami.
Replacements: 16 Takeshi Hino, 17 Koki Yamamoto, 18 Takuma Asahara, 19 Kotaro Yatabe, 20 Shokei Kin, 21 Kaito Shigeno, 22 Ryohei Yamanaka, 23 Shota Emi.

Hurricanes: 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Cory Jane, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Otere Black, 9 TJ Perenara (captain), 8 Blade Thomson, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Brad Shields, 5 Michael Fatialofa, 4 James Blackwell, 3 Jeff To'omaga-Allen, 2 Ricky Riccitelli, 1 Chris Eves.
Replacements: 16 Dane Coles, 17 Ben May, 18 Mike Kainga, 19 Reed Prinsep, 20 Callum Gibbins, 21 Chris Smylie, 22 Beauden Barrett, 23 Vince Aso.

Referee: Egon Seconds (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa), Akihisa Aso (Japan)
TMO: Minoru Fuji (Japan)

Crusaders v Brumbies
(AMI Stadium, Christchurch - Kick-off: 19.35; 17.35 AEDT; 06.35 GMT)

At a glance, it would appear the Crusaders have two major advantages - home ground and experience.

The Brumbies, who have lost more than 500 Super Rugby caps of experience in the off-season, will throw seven rookies into a Christchurch cauldron for the first game of the season and an attempt to break a 17-year drought against the Crusaders.

However, Brumbies captain Sam Carter believes there is still enough "experience" in the side to cope with the onslaught from the seven-time champion Crusaders.

"We'll look to our experienced guys and leaders in the team to step up," Carter told The Canberra Times.

"I think we've got five or six Wallabies in our starting pack so they need to step up and show the way for the team.

"There's are a lot of blokes who got experience last year and came through really well.

"We're feeling confident in what we do and what we've got out on the park."

The Crusaders are notoriously slow starters and that may be something the Brumbies will look at.

However, Crusaders coach Scott Robertson believes he may have found a way to manage the integration of the All Blacks, one of the key issues in those early season defeats.

Robertson the key lies in how to play the All Blacks, getting them good game time and getting them fit.

"Last year we [the Crusaders] had seven All Blacks on the long-term injury list," Robertson told stuff.co.nz, adding: "This year we have none."

Recent results:
2016: Crusaders won 40-14, Canberra
2015: Crusaders won 37-24, Canberra
2014: Crusaders won 40-20, Christchurch
2013: Crusaders won 30-23, Canberra
2011: Crusaders won 52-10, Nelson

Prediction: First round matches are not easy to call, since there is no form to speak of. Bookmakers suggest the Crusaders' winning margin will be at least 16 points. We feel it will be much smaller, perhaps inside 10 points.

Teams:

Crusaders: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 Seta Tamanivalu, 13 Jack Goodhue, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 George Bridge, 10 Richie Mo'unga, 9 Bryn Hall, 8 Whetu Douglas, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Jordan Taufua, 5 Sam Whitelock (captain), 4 Scott Barrett, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Ben Funnell, 1 Joe Moody.  
Replacements: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Michael Alaalatoa, 19 Luke Romano, 20 Pete Samu, 21 Ereatari Enari, 22 Mitchell Hunt, 23 David Havili.

Brumbies: 15 Aidan Toua, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Kyle Godwin, 11 James Dargaville, 10 Wharenui Hawera, 9 Joe Powell, 8 Jordan Smiler, 7 Chris Alcock, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 Josh Mann-Rea, 1 Nic Mayhew.
Replacements: 16 Robbie Abel, 17 Ben Alexander, 18 Leslie Leulua'Iali'I-Makin, 19 Tom Staniforth, 20 Lolo Fakaosilea, 21 Dewet Roos, 22 Andrew Smith, 23 Isaac Thompson.

Referee: Glen Jackson (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand), Angus Mabey (New Zealand)
TMO: Glen Newman (New Zealand)

Waratahs v Western Force
(Allianz Stadium, Sydney - Kick-off: 19.45; 16.45 AWST; 08.45 GMT)

The Waratahs will feel a little uneasy, given that they will head into the opening round without Wallaby flyhalf Bernard Foley - ruled out with a head knock sustained in the pre-season game against the Highlanders last week.

However, there are other reasons why coach Daryl Gibson feels the Western Force - under new coach Dave Wessels - are a genuine threat.

"The Force has recruited cleverly," Gibson said.

"I think they have an excellent spine of experience and have picked up some good players around them.

"I'm expecting the Force to be very competitive this season - a change of coach and change of direction to the style of game they play.

"We expect a really tough scrum battle against the Force."

The ledger between the Force and Waratahs sits firmly in favour of the Waratahs, with the New South Welshmen boasting 10 wins to the Force's five -  with one draw way back in 2007.

Although, history won't be on the Force's mind with the men from the West boasting a host of new recruits who won't be phased by the past.

Dave Wessels' men will also take plenty off confidence across to Sydney, where the Force have a good record - most recently a 25-13 win in 2015.

The Force had a convincing win against the Melbourne Rebels at Bond University on the Gold Coast, scoring four tries for a comfortable 27-5 pre-season victory.

Defence and physicality will be key, as every single side in the competition is fighting fit in Round One.

"It's Round One of Super Rugby so everyone is pretty fresh, it's definitely going to be pretty brutal and a war of attrition," Force coach Dave Wessels said.

Recent results:
2016: Waratahs won 49-13, Perth
2015: Force won 18-11, Perth
2015: Force won 25-13, Sydney
2014: Force won 28-16, Perth
2014: Waratahs won 43-21, Sydney

Prediction: Despite the loss of Bernard Foley the Waratahs will still be favourites, but the margin will be in the single digits.

Teams:

Waratahs: 15 Andrew Kellaway, 14 Reece Robinson, 13 Israel Folau, 12 Irae Simone, 11 Rob Horne, 10 Bryce Hegarty, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Michael Wells, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Jack Dempsey, 5 Will Skelton, 4 Dean Mumm, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tolu Latu, 1 Tom Robertson.
Replacements: 16 Hugh Roach, 17 Paddy Ryan, 18 David Lolohea, 19 David McDuling, 20 Brad Wilkin, 21 Matt Lucas, 22 David Horwitz, 23 Taqele Naiyaravoro.

Western Force: 15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Luke Morahan, 13 Curtis Rona, 12 Bill Meakes, 11 Chance Peni, 10 Jono Lance, 9 Ryan Louwrens, 8 Richard Hardwick, 7 Kane Koteka, 6 Brynard Stander, 5 Adam Coleman, 4 Ross Haylett-Petty, 3 Jermaine Ainsley, 2 Heath Tessmann (captain), 1 Pek Cowan.
Replacements: 16 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 17 Ben Daley, 18 Tetera Faulkner, 19 Matt Philip, 20 Isireli Naisarani, 21 Michael Ruru, 22 Ian Prior, 23 Alex Newsome.

Referee: Ben O'Keeffe (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Angus Gardner (Australia), Will Houston (Australia)
TMO: Ian Smith (Australia)

Cheetahs v Lions
(Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein - Kick-off: 15.05; 13.05 GMT)

If it is excitement and tries you are after, then you simply can't afford to miss the battle of Bloem - the Currie Cup champions against the beaten Super Rugby finalists.

Lions captain Warren Whiteley admitted that there will be expectations of his team to improve on last year's second place.

However, he feels they have built up some great experience in recent years and with 10 guys who have played for the Springboks are mature enough to cope with those expectations.

The real challenge for the Lions will be the Cheetahs, not the off-field sideshows.

"They are a great team and we have seen how they have grown under Franco [Smith] the last few years," Whiteley told rugby365.

"We experienced the coaching of Franco at the Springboks [on the year-end tour in November] and we saw why they have improved so much."

Whiteley had no doubt spectators will get value for money in what promises to be a very exciting game.

"Both teams enjoy the expansive game," Whiteley said, adding: "Everybody knows that a game between the Cheetahs and Lions are full of excitement and played at a high tempo.

"The set pieces will be vital, because we saw how the Cheetahs improved their scrums and their line-out mauls."

Cheetahs coach Franco Smith said he is "satisfied" with where they are after the pre-season.

"Everyone trained really hard and we are as prepared as possible.

"The majority of the players has played Super Rugby and know what the intensity will be like."   

Recent results:
2016: Lions won 39-22, Johannesburg
2015: Lions won 40-17, Bloemfontein
2015: Lions won 34-29, Johannesburg
2014: Lions won 60-25, Johannesburg
2014: Lions won 21-20, Bloemfontein

Prediction: Starp yourself in, it could be a wild ride. It will be close, with the Lions scoring a late winner - eight points or less.

Teams:

Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Nico Lee, 12 Clinton Swart, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Tian Meyer, 8 Paul Schoeman, 7 Teboho Mohoje, 6 Uzair Cassiem, 5 Reniel Hugo, 4 Justin Basson, 3 Johan Coetzee, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld (captain), 1 Charles Marais.
Replacements: 16 Elandré Huggett, 17 Danie Mienie, 18 Retshegofaditswe Nche, 19 Francois Uys, 20 Niell Jordaan, 21 Zee Mkhabela, 22 Niel Marais, 23 Ryno Benjamin.

Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Lionel Mapoe, 13 Howard Mnisi, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Francois de Klerk, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Ruan Ackermann, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Jacques van Rooyen.
Replacements: 16 Armand van der Merwe, 17 Corné Fourie, 18 Johannes Jonker, 19 Lourens Erasmus, 20 Albertus Smith, 21 Ross Cronjé, 22 Harold Vorster, 23 Jaco van der Walt.

Referee: Quinton Immelman (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Rasta Rasivhenge (South Africa), Lourens van der Merwe (South Africa)
TMO: Shaun Veldsman (South Africa)

Southern Kings v Jaguares
(Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium - Kick-off: 17.15; 12.15 Argentina time; 15.15 GMT)

Two of the most disappointing teams from 2016 gets a chance to show they have learnt the lessons handed out to them last year.

The Kings were never expected to do much, given the contentious circumstances that resulted in the team only being finalised in the final weeks leading up to the start of the 2016 season.

This year they have had a proper pre-season.

The quality of their playing personnel and depth remain under suspicion.

The Jaguares, despite their star-studded squad, lacks discipline and struggled to cope with the arduous travel schedule.

Both teams are looking forward to a new start.

Veteran prop Schalk Ferreira, who will lead the Kings for the first time, is expecting a fierce scrum battle against the Jaguares.

"On a global spectrum Argentina has always had a strong scrum, even of late they are very good," Ferreira said.

"The Jaguares team has the same structures.

"They will probably be the strongest scrummaging side in the competition. We have worked extra hard on it with coach Deon Davids and Springbok forwards coach Matt Proudfoot as well. We have put in the work on the scrums."

Jaguares coach Raul Perez indicated that he was expecting an improvement from his side's this season.

"Our focus is on taking thing match by match, and right now we are focusing on the Kings," Perez told a media briefing in Port Elizabeth.

"We will want to improve on the errors from last year.

"The biggest objective for the year for us is to play better throughout the tournament," Perez added.

Previous results:
2016: Kings won 29-22, Port Elizabeth
2016: Jaguares won 73-27, Buenos Aires

Prediction: Discipline, or the lack of it, was a massive issue for the Jaguares last year. If they can fix that, they should win - by 15 to 20 points.

Teams:

Southern Kings: 15 Chrysander Botha, 14 Makazole Mapimpi, 13 Berton Klaasen, 12 Waylon Murray, 11 Malcolm Jaer, 10 Lionel Cronje, 9 Louis Schreuder, 8 Ruaan Lerm, 7 Stefan Willemse, 6 Andisa Ntsila, 5 Mzwanele Zito, 4 Irne Herbst, 3 Ross Geldenhuys, 2 Michael Willemse, 1 Schalk Ferreira (captain).
Replacements: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Schalk van der Merwe, 18 Chris Heiberg, 19 Tyler Paul, 20 Chris Cloete, 21 Rudi van Rooyen, 22 Masixole Banda, 23 Luzuko Vulindlu.

Jaguares: 15 Joaquín Tuculet, 14 Matías Orlando, 13 Matías Moroni, 12 Jerónimo de la Fuente, 11 Santiago Cordero, 10 Joaquín Díaz Bonilla, 9 Gonzalo Bertranou, 8 Leonardo Senatore, 7 Pablo Matera, 6 Tomás Lezana, 5 Matías Alemanno, 4 Guido Petti, 3 Felipe Arregui, 2 Agustín Creevy (captain), 1 Lucas Noguera Paz.
Replacements: 16 Julián Montoya, 17 Santiago García Botta, 18 Cristian Bartoloni, 19 Marcos Kremer, 20 Rodrigo Báez, 21 Felipe Ezcurra, 22 Santiago González Iglesias, 23 Ramiro Moyano.

Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa)
Assistant referees: AJ Jacobs (South Africa), Archie Sehlako (South Africa)
TMO: Johan Greeff (South Africa)

Stormers v Bulls
(Newlands, Cape Town - Kick-off: 19.30; 17.30 GMT)

Both teams have spoken, repeatedly, of their desire to evolve their games.

The buzz words are 'entertaining' and 'expansive'.

That may suggest a try-fest, a rarity in the big north-south derby.

However, Bulls coach Nollis Marais was adamant that the set pieces remain crucial.

"There is no doubt the team with the best set pieces and the side making the least number of mistakes will win this game," Maras told rugby365.

"Last year we were down just 6-9 with 20 minutes to go and lost 9-33," he said of the 2016 encounter at Newlands.

"That was because we lost the set piece battle - the scrums, line-outs and mauls."

He said the Bulls must "counter" the Stormers in those aspects if they want to have a realistic chance of victory.

"Five or six of the best locks in South Africa will be on display at the Newlands at the weekend and that will be a massive battle," he added.

Stormers coach Robbie Fleck said the height of Bulls' back three could be the key.

"They are obviously a strong combination, they are big boys and they are good in the air," Fleck told a media briefing at Newlands.

"However, it is the same threat that came our way in the Currie Cup and we seemed to handle it.

"They have a good combination, but the same goes for us."

The Stormers mentor said the fact that the Stormers and Bulls are playing New Zealand teams this year, make it vital that they get the season off to a good start.

"The Bulls and ourselves are in a very tough group," he said, adding: "You want to get off to a winning start for the confidence of the squad.

"We both got to tour New Zealand.

"There are some tough obstacles in our way. Both teams have enjoyed a good pre-season and both teams are confident going into this game.

"Finally, we are here and the waiting is over. It's now time to get stuck in and see where we are and how far we have come."

Recent results:
2016: Bulls won 17-13, Pretoria
2016: Stormers won 33-9, Cape Town
2015: Stormers won 15-13, Cape Town
2015: Stormers won 29-17, Pretoria
2014: Stormers won 16-0, Cape Town
2014: Bulls won 28-12, Pretoria

Prediction: The Bulls have not won in Cape Town since 2011 and there are good reasons for that. They do have a very good chance, but we feel the Stormers will sneak it - by five points.

Teams:

Stormers: 15 Sarel Marais, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 EW Viljoen, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Dillyn Leyds, 10 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Siyamthanda Kolisi (captain), 6 Rynhardt Elstadt, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Mbongeni Mbonambi, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Replacements: 16 Ramone Samuels, 17 Oliver Kebble, 18 Frans Malherbe, 19 Chris van Zyl, 20 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 21 Dewaldt Duvenage, 22 Dan Kriel, 23 Robert du Preez.

Bulls: 15 Jesse Kriel, 14 Jamba Ulengo, 13 Dries Swanepoel, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Travis Ismaiel, 10 Handré Pollard (captain), 9 Rudy Paige, 8 Hanro Liebenberg, 7 Jacques Potgieter, 6 Nick de Jager, 5 Rudolph Snyman, 4 Lodewyk de Jager, 3 Trevor Nyakane, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Pierre Schoeman.
Replacements: 16 Edgar Marutlulle, 17 Jacobie Adriaanse, 18 Lizo Gqoboka, 19 Jason Jenkins, 20 Ruan Steenkamp, 21 Piet van Zyl, 22 Tian Schoeman, 23 Warrick Gelant.

Referee: Jaco van Heerden (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Shuhei Kubo (Japan), Stuart Berry (South Africa)
TMO: Marius Jonker (South Africa)

Compiled by Jan de Koning
@king365ed
@rugby365com

Mc article malcolm marx v cheetahs 2017 800

Lions edge Cheetahs in Bloem

Sat, 25 Feb 2017 11:27

REPORT: The Lions started their 2017 Super Rugby campaign with a narrow 28-25 win over the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein on Saturday.

Centre Rohan Janse van Rensburg scored two tries for the visitors, while another score came via a penalty try. The Cheetahs only managed one try with Raymond Rhule crossing the whitewash.

At half-time, the scores were level at 6-6 after an error-ridden display by both teams.

The home side made a blistering start from the opening kick-off and they looked like they were on their way to scoring before a handling error in the Lions' 22.

Both teams seemed intent on spreading the ball wide, but it was the Cheetahs who looked the more dangerous with their swift passing and offloading.

However, it was the Lions who scored the first points after taking advantage of some Cheetahs' ill-discipline. Elton Jantjies converted an easy penalty in the 14th minute for a 3-0 lead.

The Cheetahs got a kickable penalty of their own in the 18th minute after a scrum indiscretion by the Lions and Fred Zeilinga leveled the scores.

The home side then had an opportunity to go in front a few minutes later, but this time Zeilinga could not find the direction from a fair way out.

Instead, it was the Lions who took the lead again in the 24th minute with another Jantjies penalty before Zeilinga missed another penalty from a difficult angle.

With four minutes remaining in the first half, the Cheetahs were given a major boost when Lions scrumhalf Francois De Klerk was given a yellow card for going off his feet at a ruck and preventing the Cheetahs from recycling the ball during a promising attack in the visitors' 22.  

Zeilinga eventually converted the penalty after that indiscretion and at half-time it was all level.

After a try-scoring drought in the first half, the Cheetahs scored the first try of the game in the opening minute of the second half when wing Raymond Rhule collected a loose Lions' pass to race away for the score. Zeilinga converted and the Cheetahs led 13-6.

The Cheetahs then extended their lead to 10 points in the 46th minute when Zeilinga converted another penalty.

With about 27 minutes left in the match, the Lions hit back with a try of their own after Andries Coetzee collected a grubber by Lionel Mapoe before passing to Janse van Rensburg who crossed the whitewash. Jantjies converted the try from a tight angle to reduce the deficit to three points.

The home side were the next to score again after a Zeilinga penalty before the Lions hit back once again via Jantjies.

However, the Cheetahs six-point lead was restored again at the 65th minute mark when Zeilinga knocked over his fifth of the game.

With the clock winding down, the Lions then made a big decision by going for a line-out in the Cheetahs' 22 after they were awarded a kickable penalty.

However, Warren Whiteley's side were rewarded when they awarded a penalty try after the Cheetahs collapsed a maul close to their own tryline. As with the new rules, no conversion was needed.

Cheetahs replacement Francois Uys was also yellow carded in his role in the maul collapse.

With just over five minutes left, the Cheetahs regained the lead with another Zeilinga penalty before Janse van Rensburg scored his second try of the game when he dived over in the corner after some great backline play by his teammates.

That was the final bit of scoring in the game with the Lions hanging on for the win.

Man of the match: Rohan Janse van Rensburg scored two tries for the Lions and some good runs in the midfield. However, the award goes to Cheetahs flyhalf Fred Zeilinga who kept his team in front for most of the game with the boot. He also made some good decisions out wide.   

The scorers:

For Cheetahs:
Try: Rhule
Con: Zeilinga
Pens: Zelinga 6

For Lions:
Tries: Janse van Rensburg 2, Penalty Try
Con: Jantjies
Pens: Jantjies 3

Yellow cards: Francois de Klerk (Lions, 36 - cynical play, playing the ball on the ground). Francois Uys (Cheetahs, 68 - cynical play, collapsing the maul)

Teams:

Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Nico Lee, 12 Clinton Swart, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Tian Meyer, 8 Paul Schoeman, 7 Teboho Mohoje, 6 Uzair Cassiem, 5 Reniel Hugo, 4 Justin Basson, 3 Johan Coetzee, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld (captain), 1 Charles Marais.
Replacements: 16 Elandré Huggett, 17 Danie Mienie, 18 Retshegofaditswe Nche, 19 Francois Uys, 20 Niell Jordaan, 21 Zee Mkhabela, 22 Niel Marais, 23 Ryno Benjamin.

Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Lionel Mapoe, 13 Howard Mnisi, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Francois de Klerk, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Ruan Ackermann, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Jacques van Rooyen.
Replacements: 16 Armand van der Merwe, 17 Corné Fourie, 18 Johannes Jonker, 19 Lourens Erasmus, 20 Albertus Smith, 21 Ross Cronjé, 22 Harold Vorster, 23 Jaco van der Walt.

Referee: Quinton Immelman (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Rasta Rasivhenge (South Africa), Lourens van der Merwe (South Africa)
TMO: Shaun Veldsman (South Africa)

Raymond Rhule (41min)
TRIES
Rohan Janse van Rensburg (52min) and Rohan Janse van Rensburg (76min)
Fred Zeilinga (42min)
CONVERSIONS
Elton Jantjies (53min)
Fred Zeilinga (18min), Fred Zeilinga (36min), Fred Zeilinga (45min), Fred Zeilinga (58min), Fred Zeilinga (64min), and Fred Zeilinga (75min)
PENALTIES
Elton Jantjies (13min), Elton Jantjies (23min), and Elton Jantjies (62min)
 
PENALTY TRIES
67min
 
DROP GOALS
Francois Uys (68min)
Francois de Klerk (35min)
 
 
VENUE Bloemfontein
REFEREE Quinton Immelman (South Africa)