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Super Rugby | Durban
13:05 (GMT) | 10-03-2018
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Thank you for joining us. Stay tuned for some more Super Rugby action
  • 80
The Sunwolves looks for another score before the end of the match but the ball is kicked behind the dead-ball line and that brings the game to an end
  • 79
Nakamura adds the extras
  • 78
After the restart the Wolves wins a penalty and opts for touch. They run a set play move that sees Tupou go over in the corner
  • 76
Bosch adds the extras
  • 75
The comedy continues for the away team as the ball is lost backward over their own try line. Cameron Wright pounces on the ball and scores
  • 73
Penalty for the Wolves and they tap it quickly but their momentum is stopped in a comedy of knock-ons by both teams
  • 71
The ball is booted through after a turnover and chased down by the Sharks but Lemeki runs it into touch
  • 70
At the return of play both teams are still looking to attack. The Sunwolves with ball in hand inside the Sharks half
  • 68
du Preez adds the extras
  • 67
Curwin Bosch spots space at the back of the Wolves defensive line and chips it through. The bounce is unkind for Bosch but Sibusiso Nkosi fields it and scores
  • 66
The home team attacks wide and Mapimpi finds space but he is taken down short and the ball is turned over and cleared
  • 65
The Sharks wins the ball back and clears. Touch found of a Wolves mistake. Sharks ball
  • 64
Scrum penalty for the Sunwolves who taps it quickly and looks to catch the Sharks by surprise
  • 62
Line-out for the Wolves close to the Sharks' 22. The Ball goes dead and the scrum is awarded to the Wolves
  • 59
Matsushima adds the extras
  • 58
Wimpy van der Walt powers his way over the try line
  • 57
At the return of play the Wolves get they're hands on the ball and they're attacking 5m out
  • 55
du Preez adds the extras
  • 54
The SHarks shows great skills with a number offloads and Jacques Vermeulen finishes off a well worked try
  • 53
Sharks with ball in hand and Bosch kicks it forward but the ball goes over the try line and is dotted down by Wolves. 22 drop-out
  • 52
At the return of play possession changes hands a couple of times and both teams look to make use of the boot
  • 49
du Preeze fails to add the extras
  • 48
After the restart, the Sharks are back on the attack and they go wide to Mapimpi who shows a pair of clean heels and scores in the corner
  • 46
Tatekawa fails to add the extras
  • 45
The Wolves gets the rolling maul going but it goes down short and they spread the ball wide to Lemeki who scores
  • 43
The Wolves again with ball in hand and looking dangerous. Penalty for the away team and the opt for touch
  • 41
The Sunwolves gets the 2nd half on the way and from the start the Sharks looks to run.du Preez puts in a cross-kick which is fielded by Mapimpi. The ball is turned over and the Wolves counter attacks. They go over the try line but the ref goes upstairs to check for obstruction and the try is not awarded

Half Time

  • 40
The Sharks defense manages to hold up the ball and the ref blows the final whistle of the half.Half time
  • 39
The Sunwolves makes a meal out their line-out and the Sharks clears but touch is not found and the Wolves look to run it back dangerously
  • 38
At the return of play the Wunwolves wins a penalty and opts for touch
  • 36
du Preez adds the extras
  • 35
The Sharks manages to put together a piece of play that sees Lubabalo Mtembu go over for a try
  • 34
Scrum reset for the Sharks inside the Wolves half
  • 33
Sunwolves scrum but their flyhalf loses concentration and loses the ball forward. Scrum for the home team
  • 32
At the return of play the Sharks gets the ball back after a 22 drop-out and they manage to create space on the left flank but their momentum is stopped by a knock-on.
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Rob du Preez adds the extras
  • 29
Akker van der Merwe sparks a bit of brilliance as he picks up at the back of the ruck and finds space on the blindside to score a try
  • 27
Line-out on the halfway line. The Sharks look to attack the midfield but the Wolves defence charges up quickly
  • 26
Penalty for the Sharks at the break down and they opt for touch
  • 25
At the return of play the Sunwolves clears. The Sharks put up a few phases before they try to clear but du Preez kicks is charged down but the ball rolls into touch
  • 24
Harumichi Tatekawa makes no error
  • 22
The Wolves edging forward but they can't seem to finish. Penalty for the visitors and they opt for goal
  • 20
Scrappy scrum by the Sharks and the Sunwolves defenders manages to win a scrum 5m out by trapping the Sharks behind their goal line
  • 19
The Sunwolves attacks short from the scrum but the home team's defence holds up stronger and manages to win a turnover scrum
  • 16
Penalty at the scrum for the Sunwolves and they opt for another scrum
  • 15
The Wolves attacks the midfield from the line-out and they manage to find a gap. Bosch makes a try-saving tackle. The Wolves gets the ball over the try line but it is held up.5m scrum for the Wolves
  • 14
The Wolves gets the rolling maul going but the Sharks defense holds up. They manage to win back the ball and Am clears into touch
  • 13
5m scrum for the home team and they clear but touch is found inside their own 22
  • 12
Bosch looks to clear but the ball is charged down and then knocked forward by a Sunwolves player. The ref goes upstairs to check and the on field decision stands. No try
  • 11
After the restart the Sharks loses the ball forward and the Wolves look to counter. They kick the ball forward and find touch 10m out
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du Preez adds the extras
  • 8
The Sharks with ball in hand again and they spread it wide to Mapimpi who scores a try with no defenders wide
  • 6
The Sharks wins a penalty and opts for touch. The Sharks spreads the ball wide and finds space on the wing. They bring the ball back and find a whole the Wolves defensive line but the ball is turned over
  • 4
The home team with ball in hand inside their own half and Schreuder clears with a box kick. The Wolves secures the ball and returns a kick of their own and finds touch 15m out from the Sharks' try line
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After the restart the Sharks wins a penalty and opts for touch
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Rob du Preez makes no error and gets the Sharks on the scoreboard
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The Sharks gets the game on the way with a deep kick off. The Sunwolves secures the ball and clears into touch. Line-out for the home team inside the oppositions half. The Sharks wins a penalty early on right in front of goal and they opt for goal
  • -5
The players are doing their final preparations before taking the field. Referee Federico Anselmi (Argentina) will be in charge of the whistle in this game
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Players to look out for in the Sharks line-up will have to be Curwin Bosch, Andre Esterhuizen and Ruan Botha while the Sunwolves will expect strong performances by Michael Little, William Tupou and Willie Britz
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The Sunwolves won’t rank as the Sharks’ toughest opponents this winter but there is a good reason why Saturday’s Kings Park date with the Japanese visitors is of crucial importance. The Sharks have played two, lost one and drawn one, and there is a critical need for them to pick up some much needed momentum ahead of a tough tour that starts with their departure the day after the game. The Sharks face the Brumbies in Canberra in their first tour match before heading to New Zealand, and after dropping points at home by drawing with the Waratahs, there is a need to make up for it by winning in Australia. “We know we have a lot to work on after last week and this game against the Sunwolves is one that we need to really nail down so that we can gain some confidence before we go overseas,” said kicking coach Braam van Straaten. “This is a crucial week for us in the build-up to the tour, where we play some tough games. We need confidence and we need to iron out the areas that let us down last weekend.”
  • -30
Welcome to Kings Park, Durban where the Sharks will face off against the Sunwolves in this Super Rugby fixture
Mc sharks graphic80x50
  • 1 Tendai Mtawarira
  • 2 Mahlatse Ralepelle
  • 3 Armand van der Merwe
  • 4 John-Hubert Meyer
  • 5 Ruan Botha
  • 6 Stephan Lewies
  • 7 Wian Vosloo
  • 8 Jacques Vermeulen
  • 9 Lubabalo Mtembu
  • 10 Louis Schrueder
  • 11 Robert du Preez
  • 12 Makazole Mapimpi
  • 13 Andre Esterhuizen
  • 14 Lukhanyo Am
  • 15 Sibusiso Nkosi
  • 16 Curwin Bosch
  • 17 Armand van der Merwe
  • 18 Mahlatse Ralepelle
  • 19 Juan Schoeman
  • 20 Ross Geldenhuys
  • 21 Gideon Koegelenberg
  • 22 Keegan Daniel
  • 23 Cameron Wright
  • 24 Marius Louw
  • 25 Lwazi Mvovo
  • 1 Craig Millar
  • 2 Yusuke Niwai
  • 3 Takuma Asahara
  • 4 Kazuki Himeno
  • 5 Grant Hattingh
  • 6 Michael Leitch
  • 7 Yoshitaka Tokunaga
  • 8 Willie Britz
  • 9 Keisuke Uchida
  • 10 Harumichi Tatekawa
  • 11 William Tupou
  • 12 Michael Little
  • 13 Sione Teaupa
  • 14 Lomano Lemeki
  • 15 Kotaro Matsushima
  • 16 Atsushi Sakate
  • 17 Shintaro Ishihara
  • 18 Hencus van Wyk
  • 19 Wimpie van der Walt
  • 20 Pieter Labuschagne
  • 21 Yutaka Nagare
  • 22 Ryoto Nakamura
  • 23 Robbie Robinson
Mc article super rugby round four   saturday matches 800

Preview: Super Rugby, Round Four - Part Two

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 22:27

HURRICANE WARNING: The Hurricanes, the last team to beat the Crusaders, will have to overcome a  farcical travel schedule if they are to be victorious in the opening match on Saturday.

The Crusaders' only loss in their last 20 Super Rugby outings was against the Hurricanes in Wellington last year.

However, the Hurricanes had to fly from Wellington to Pretoria (13400km), then from Pretoria to Buenos Aires (8130km), before heading home to Wellington (9980km).

After losing 19-21 to the Bulls in Pretoria, they beat the Jaguares 34-9 in Buenos Aires.

It will take something special to overcome the defending champions after such a schedule.

After that, we head across the Tasman Sea where the Reds host the Bulls, before a long trip across the Indian Ocean where the Sharks face the Sunwolves in Durban.

That is followed by the Lions against the Blues in Johannesburg. The weekend's schedule is concluded when the Jaguares host the Waratahs in Buenos Aires.

We look at the Saturday matches!

Saturday, March 10:

Hurricanes v Crusaders
(Westpac Stadium, Wellington - Kick-off: 19.35; 06.35 GMT)

The spotlight has been shining on brightly on Hurricanes flyhalf Beauden Barrett.

Not only is he just the 12th player to bring up 100 games for the Hurricanes, but pundits have suggested Barrett could be even better than All Black legend Dan Carter.

Barrett has been playing down the occasion and how quickly he has reached the milestone.

"I'm certainly proud of it but it's gone so quick," he said.

"I feel like I'm probably halfway through my career and I've had a good run of being injury free for a lot of it, hence why it's happened reasonably fast."

Barrett, 26, made his debut for the Hurricanes against the Cheetahs in 2011 as a substitute.

It is fitting that Barrett will get to bring up his 100th match in the very stadium where he helped lift the Super Rugby trophy when the side meets the Crusaders on Saturday.

"It will be a great occasion regardless of it being my 100th," he insisted.

"My focus is to go out there and play well for the team. Ultimately it's about winning on Saturday in front of our own fans in our first home game of the season, that's what I'm most excited about."

Crusaders assistant coach Ronan O'Gara was equally lavish with the praise, but was adamant that as a team the Crusaders can cope with the threat Barrett poses.

"You can have all the plans in the world for Beauden Barrett, but yet he could rip you apart, that's what he's good at," the former Irish flyhalf said.

"You've got to have a focus on him, but you've got to have a team focus.

"That's the strength of the Crusaders - they're very good on bigger picture stuff.

"We have a competitive squad, we have a hungry squad and we have a seriously hungry coach," he said.

"Sport is about what you can control and what we can control is our preparation for the Hurricanes. Whether it will be good enough we don't know but if it isn't you go back and retry the following week."

Recent results:
2017: Hurricanes won 31-22, Wellington
2017: Crusaders won 20-12, Christchurch
2016: Hurricanes won 35-10, Christchurch
2015: Crusaders won 35-18, Christchurch
2015: Hurricanes won 29-23, Wellington

Prediction: The Hurricanes have won seven of their last 10 games against the Crusaders, though only two of those 10 games were decided by double-digit margins. The Hurricanes have won their last four games at home against the Crusaders, previously they had won just two of 10 home games against them. The Crusaders will be looking to avoid back to back losses on the road in the regular season for the first time since May 2015. The Hurricanes have conceded just 15 points per game this campaign, the fewest of any team; the Rebels (18 points) are the only other team to have conceded fewer than 20 points per game. Julian Savea beat seven defenders last round, the equal second most of any player; the last time he made more in a single game was in Round Two, 2017 against the Rebels (eight). The Hurricanes are a real threat, but their travel schedule will count against them and the Crusaders could sneak ahead in the final quarter and win by 12 points.


Hurricanes: 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Julian Savea, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Ben Lam, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Thomas Perenara. 8 Gareth Evans, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Brad Shields, 5 Sam Lousi, 4 Vaea Fifita, 3 Ben May, 2 Ricky Riccitelli, 1 Chris Eves.
Replacements: 16 Asafo Aumua, 17 Fraser Armstrong, 18 Marcel Renata, 19 Michael Fatialofa, 20 Blade Thompson, 21 Richard Judd, 22 Ihaia West, 23 Vince Aso.

Crusaders: 15 David Havili, 14 Seta Tamanivalu, 13 Jack Goodhue, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 George Bridge, 10 Mitchell Hunt, 9 Bryn Hall, 8 Jordan Taufua, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Heiden Bedwell-Curtis, 5 Samuel Whitelock (captain), 4 Scott Barrett, 3 Michael Alaalatoa, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Wyatt Crockett.
Replacements: 16 Ben Funnell, 17 Chris King, 18 Oliver Jager, 19 Luke Romano, 20 Billy Harmon, 21 Mitchell Drummond, 22 Mike Delany, 23 Manasa Mataele.

Referee: Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Paul Williams (New Zealand), Cam Stone (New Zealand)
TMO: Glenn Newman (New Zealand)

Reds v Bulls
(Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane - Kick-off: 18.45; 08.45 GMT; 10.45 SA Time)

The Bulls were brought back down to earth with a bang by the Lions last week, but it is with a real belief that they arrived in Brisbane this week.

Bulls coach John Mitchell admitted his team has a "long way" to go still - following a win over the Hurricanes to open their season and then last week' comprehensive loss.

"There are good fundamentals in place at this stage of the race," Mitchell said in Brisbane.

"We have not played in Brisbane since 2013, so it will be a new experience for most of the team.

"That should create some energy, but I have no doubt that the importance of a good start to our tour will also perk up the players," Mitchell said.
"We have done very well in certain areas of the game so far, but the reality is that our away record is poor. This is something we need to change if we want to become the team we want to be."

Reds assistant coach Tony McGahan confirmed that they are relying on the "new and improved" passing game of Samu Kerevi to shine - following his shift to inside centre.

There has always been a school of thought that Kerevi's best position may, in fact, be inside centre, despite the man himself "having previously said he prefers playing at No.13.

"We have a young group coming together and we are trying to find the best positions," McGahan said at Ballymore on Thursday.

"He's had a couple of weeks with Duncan and we will see where he fits.

"He has worked on his passing, he's keen to get the ball in hands and he's a great communicator.

"With the competition, we will see how he goes this week."

Reds coach Brad Thorn said that while the Bulls will be a "tough challenge", the team is looking forward to running out in front of their home fans again this weekend.

"Hopefully the team can go out and make everyone proud."

Recent results:
2016: Bulls won 41-22, Pretoria
2015: Bulls won 43-22, Pretoria
2013: Reds won 23-18, Brisbane
2012: Bulls won 61-8, Pretoria
2011: Reds won 39-30, Brisbane

Prediction: Each of the last 11 meetings between the Reds and Bulls has been won by the home team on the day; though, this will be the first meeting in Queensland since 2013. The Reds will be hunting for consecutive Super Rugby wins for the first time since May-June 2014. The Bulls have won just two of their last 19 games outside South Africa, with their last international win coming in Round 10, 2016. The Bulls have won 16 line-outs per game with a line-out success rate of 9 percent, the best of any team in either category this campaign. Lukhan Tui has crossed for a try once in each of his last two games at home for the Reds. There is a travel factor, but the Bulls should have just enough in the tank to sneak a late winner - by seven points or less.


Reds: 15 Aidan Toua, 14 Filipo Daugunu, 13 Chris Feauai-Sautia, 12 Samu Kerevi, 11 Eto Nabuli, 10 Jono Lance, 9 James Tuttle, 8 Caleb Timu, 7 Liam Wright, 6 Adam Korczyk, 5 Kane Douglas, 4 Izack Rodda, 3 Taniela Tupou, 2 Brandon Paenga-Amosa, 1 James Slipper (captain).     
Replacements: 16 Alex Mafi, 17 JP Smith, 18 Sef Fa'agase, 19 Harry Hockings, 20 Angus Scott-Young, 21 Tate McDermott, 22 Hamish Stewart, 23 Duncan Paia'aua.

Bulls: 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Johnny Kotze, 11 Duncan Matthews, 10 Handre Pollard (captain), 9 Andre Warner, 8 Nick de Jager, 7 Hanro Liebenberg, 6 Roelof Smit, 5 Lodewyk de Jager, 4 Rudolph Snyman, 3 Frans van Wyk, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Pierre Schoeman.
Replacements: 16 Adriaan Strauss, 17 Lizo Gqoboka, 18 Trevor Nyakane, 19 Jason Jenkins, 20 Marco van Staden, 21 Embrose Papier, 22 Marnitz Boshoff, 23 Divan Rossouw.

Referee: Jamie Nutbrown (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: William Houston (Australia), Graham Cooper (Australia)
TMO: Damien Mitchelmore (Australia)

Sharks v Sunwolves
(Kings Park, Durban - Kick-off: 15.05; 13.05 GMT; 22.05 Japan Time)

Most, if not all, teams start as favourites against the Sunwolves.

Injuries make the Japan franchise even more vulnerable.

However, the Sharks have been vulnerable themselves and after three weeks (which included a bye for the Durban-based outfit) they are still looking for their first win.

Utility back Lwazi Mvovo, who was dropped to the bench after two starts, said there was no underestimating the Sunwolves.

"They play a pretty expansive game," Mvovo said.

"Last year we had to dig in and play right to the end when we scored a few points in the last 15 minutes.

"They're a very good side, especially with the New Zealand influence in their coaching team.

"They're going to play and we're not underestimating their ability."

Sharks coach Robert du Preez was stating the obvious when he said last week's draw with the Waratahs was disappointing.

"As I said before, we are just lacking patience," the Sharks mentor said of his team's winless start to the season.

"We are on the cusp of playing a really good game.

"It is just a matter of time."

He said it is important they have a "really good game" before they head off on a tough four-match tour - that will see them face the Brumbies in Canberra, the Rebels in Melbourne, the Blues in Auckland and the Hurricanes in Napier.

Du Preez added that it is important for his team to build pressure by "putting the phases together".

Mvovo also spoke of moving forward and not getting hung up on the poor start to the season.

"While we can't change what's in the past, our attitude going forward is very important," Mvovo said.

He admits that the players have looked deep within and acknowledged that they must put their hands up.

Previous results:
2017: Sharks won 38-17, Singapore
2016: Sharks won 40-29, Durban

Prediction: The Sharks have won each of the previous two meetings between these teams, scoring no fewer than 38 points on each occasion. The Sharks are now winless in three games at home; the last time they went longer without a home win was a stretch of four defeats across the 2009 and 2010 campaigns. The Sunwolves are yet to win on the road in Super Rugby and have conceded 146 points in their last two games away from home. The Sunwolves are yet to lose a scrum on their own feed this campaign, one of just three teams yet to do so (Highlanders, Rebels). Robert du Preez has scored a try in each of his two games for the Sharks thus far, pulling in a points tally of 23 across those games. It might not be the margin most expect, but the Sharks should still win easily - by 15 points.


Sharks: 15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Sibusiso Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Louis Schreuder, 8 Lubabalo Mtembu, 7 Jacques Vermeulen, 6 Wian Vosloo, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Ruan Botha (captain), 3 John-Hubert Meyer, 2 Armand van der Merwe/Mahlatse Ralepelle, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.        
Replacements: 16 Armand van der Merwe/Mahlatse Ralepelle, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 Ross Geldenhuys, 19 Gideon Koegelenberg, 20 Keegan Daniel, 21 Cameron Wright, 22 Marius Louw, 23 Lwazi Mvovo.

Sunwolves: 15 Kotaro Matsushima, 14 Lomano Lemeki, 13 Sione Teaupa, 12 Michael Little, 11 William Tupou, 10 Harumichi Tatekawa, 9 Keisuke Uchida, 8 Willem Britz (captain), 7 Yoshitaka Tokunaga, 6 Michael Leitch, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4 Kazuki Himeno, 3 Takuma Asahara, 2 Yusuke Niwai, 1 Craig Millar.         
Replacements: 16 Atsushi Sakate, 17 Shintaro Ishihara, 18 Hencus van Wyk, 19 Wimpie van der Walt, 20 Pieter Labuschagne, 21 Yutaka Nagare, 22 Ryoto Nakamura, 23 Robbie Robinson.

Referee: Federico Anselmi (Argentina)
Assistant referees: Egon Seconds (South Africa), Archie Sehlako (South Africa)
TMO: Marius Jonker (South Africa)

Lions v Blues
(Ellis Park, Johannesburg - Kick-off: 17.15; 15.15 GMT; 04.15 NZ Time Sunday, March 11)

The Blues may have lost their first two games of the season, but the fact that they collected losing bonus points against the Highlanders (34-41) and the Chiefs (21-27) make it clear they are no pushovers.

In fact, they are a team loaded with All Blacks and individual stars.

That is why the Lions need to ensure they get their own game right.

Lions flank Cyle Brink said you never know what you will get from the New Zealand visitors.

"If it becomes a scrappy game, it will be a hard day at the office for us," Brink said.

"They are never an easy side to play.

"The best way for us to approach the game is to stick to our structures."

Blues coach Tana Umaga admitted his team is facing a tall order against a confident and settled Lions outfit.

"The Lions are a formidable team," Umaga said.

"We remember our last time here, two years ago, and we are keen to put that right," said Umaga said.

"They have scored a lot of tries this season off their line-out drive so we have worked hard on this aspect.

We need to be disciplined and not give them attacking chances from penalties although at the same time we need to be our usual aggressive selves at the breakdown.

"This [Ellis Park] is a magnificent stadium and conditions should be great, so if we can do well at set-piece, then we have plenty of attacking ability to enjoy the occasion."

Umaga said the travel delays were far from helpful but no excuse, while going with six forwards in the reserves is needed to cope with the altitude factor at Johannesburg.

Recent results:
2016: Lions won 43-5, Johannesburg
2015: Lions won 13-10, Albany
2014: Lions won 39-36, Johannesburg
2012: Blues won 25-3, Auckland
2011: Blues won 41-32, Johannesburg

Prediction: The Lions have won their last three games against the Blues, though they were defeated in their seven meetings prior. The Lions have won four of their last six games against New Zealand opposition; however, all but one of those games came in the post-season. The Blues have won only one of their last 10 games in South Africa, letting two half-time leads slip in that period. The Lions have scored eight tries on the back of a line-out win this season, only three other teams in the competition have scored more than eight tries overall (Crusaders, Rebels, Stormers). Melani Nanai has an average gain of 12 metres per carry this season, the best of any player (with a minimum of 10 carries). It will be tighter than most pundits expect, but when the travel factor and altitude kick in, in the final quarter, the Lions should ease ahead and win by about 16 points.


Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Sylvian Mahuza, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Francois Mostert, 6 Cyle Brink, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Jacques van Rooyen.
Replacements: 16 Robbie Coetzee, 17 Dylan Smith, 18 Jacobus Adriaanse, 19 Lourens Erasmus, 20 Albertus Smith, 21 Ashlon Davids, 22 Harold Vorster, 23 Hacjivah Dayimani.

Blues: 15 Michael Collins, 14 Matt Duffie, 13 Rieko Ioane, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Melani Nanai, 10 Bryn Gatland, 9 Sam Nock, 8 Akira Ioane, 7 Antonio Kiri Kiri, 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Gerard Cowley-Tuioti, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu, 3 Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 2 James Parsons (captain), 1 Alex Hodgman.
Replacements: 16 Ross Wright, 17 Pauliasi Manu, 18 Michael Tamoaieta, 19 Scott Scrafton, 20 Jimmy Tupou, 21 Murphy Taramai, 22 Jonathan Ruru, 23 Stephen Perofeta.

Referee: Nicholas Berry (Australia)
Assistant referees: AJ Jacobs (South Africa), Jaco Pretorius (South Africa)
TMO: Willie Vos (South Africa)

Jaguares v Waratahs
(Estadio José Amalfitani, Buenos Aires - Kick-off: 18.40; 21.40 GMT; 08.40, Sunday, March 11 AEDT)

The Waratahs are looking to break a seven-game winless streak overseas.

It has been 88 weeks since the Waratahs last won a match abroad, with their last successful outing coming against the Sunwolves in July 2016.

Since that 57-12 victory, the Waratahs have lost on the road to the Blues, Lions, Sharks, Hurricanes, Highlanders and the Chiefs, to go with last week's draw in Durban.

However, the Tahs are up against a team desperate to break their own duck - having lost all three their matches this season - against the Stormers and Lions in South Africa, as well as the Hurricanes in Buenos Aires.

Prop Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro said the key will be the set pieces and defence.

"We are a team that never gives up," Chaparro said.

It will be the Waratahs' first trip to Argentina.

Waratahs assistant coach Simon Cron said the team had done their homework on their South American rivals.

"The key thing for us against a team like them is to play structure, so to build pressure," Cron told the Sydney Morning Herald.

"Last week against the Sharks we probably let the pressure valve off at times through our own errors or trying to offload or going that one step too far.

"I don't think we can afford to do that against these guys otherwise they'll counterattack and run it from anywhere.

"The Jaguares love unstructured ball. They'll play from anywhere, they love an offload and they're high on energy on the field.

"We want to put pressure on that guy on the ground so he can't offload but then it's about our defensive connections so when they do offload, we can shut it down. What we don't want to do is have a disconnect in our defensive line so that when they offload we leave a hole."

Previous result:
2017: Jaguares won 40-27, Sydney

Prediction: The Jaguares ran out to a 40-27 win in their only previous encounter with the Waratahs. The Jaguares have lost their last four games in a row at home; they had previously never lost more than two games in a row on home turf. The Waratahs are winless in their last seven games outside Australia, failing to pick up a single competition point in five of those matches. The Jaguares have missed 109 tackles in just three games so far this campaign, more than any other team. Michael Hooper has crossed for a try in each of his two games for the Waratahs this season, and has missed just three of 25 tackle attempts in that time. It is a tough call as neither team has been consistent, so you don't really know what to expect. We feel the Waratahs might sneak this one - by five points.


Jaguares: 15 Joaquin Tuculet, 14 Bautista Delguy, 13 Matias Orlando, 12 Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias, 11 Emiliano Boffelli, 10 Nicolas Sanchez, 9 Gonzalo Bertranou, 8 Javier Ortega Desio, 7 Marcos Kremer, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Tomas Lavanini, 4 Matias Alemanno, 3 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, 2 Agustin Creevy, 1 Felipe Arregui.
Replacements: 16 Julian Montoya, 17 Santiago Garcia Botta, 18 Juan Pablo Zeiss, 19 Guido Petti Pagadizaval, 20 Juan Manuel Leguizamon, 21 Felipe Ezcurra, 22 Joaquin Diaz Bonilla, 23 Sebastian Cancelliere.


15 Israel Folau, 14 Alex Newsome, 13 Lalakai Foketi, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Curtis Rona, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Jake Gordon, 8 Jed Holloway, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Michael Wells, 5 Tom Staniforth, 4 Ned Hanigan, 3 Paddy Ryan, 2 Damien Fitzpatrick, 1 Tom Robertson.
Replacements: 16 Tolu Latu, 17 Harry Johnson-Holmes, 18 Kalivati Tawake, 19 Nick Palmer, 20 Will Miller, 21 Nick Duffy, 22 Bryce Hegarty, 23 Taqele Naiyaravoro.

Referee: Mike Fraser (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Nick Briant (New Zealand), Pablo Deluca (Argentina)
TMO: Santiago Borsani (Argentina)

Compiled by Jan de Koning

* Statistics provided by Opta Sports

Mc article akker van der merwe.800

Sharks beat wounded Sunwolves

Sat, 10 Mar 2018 13:00

SUPER RUGBY MATCH REPORT: The Sharks produced a comfortable 50-22 win over an injury-plagued Sunwolves at Kings Park in Durban

The win sees the Sharks record their first Super Rugby match after their frustrated 24-all draw to the Waratahs last weekend.

The Sharks were in control of the match from the start and outscored the visitors sevens tries to three.

Within just under two minutes of play, flyhalf Robert du Preez stuck over a simple penalty following a good attacking build-up from the Sharks.

Soon 3-0 became 10-0 as great interplay by Sharks trio - Beast Mtawarira, Andre Esterhuizen and Akker van der Merwe - handed  Makazole Mapimpi a perfect platform for his first try of the match.

Du Preez added the extras for the lead.

The Sunwolves, to their credit, produced a gutsy performance and had numerous opportunities accumulate points, however handling errors just took centre stage when it came to the Japanese side's attack.

The visitors enjoyed 10 minutes of dominance, which almost handed William Tupou a try, however great cover defence by Curwin Bosch made sure the Sunwoulve stay scorless

The visitors eventually got on the board through a successful penalty from Harumichi Tatekawa, 3-10.

The hosts who had the last say before the break as they added two additional tries - thanks to hooker Van der Merwe and No.8 Lubabalo Mtembu - just before the break. Du Preez added the extras, respectively for the 24-3 lead.

As the second half commenced the Sunwolves came out with full intent. The visitors capitalised on turnover ball and went over the tryline. However, the TMO ruled there was an obstruction in the build-up and the score remained 24-3 in favour of the Sharks after 42 minutes.  

Minutes later, the Sunwolves were finally rewarded for their efforts as wing Lomano Lemeki scored the five-pointer. Fullback Kotaro Matsushima added the extras.

Unfortunately for Sunwolves, they conceded a scrum from the restart which served as a perfect opportunity for Sharks to continue their onslaught. From the scrum Sharks collected the ball and sent it wide to Mapimpi, whose quick feet made sure he sealed his brace of tries and stretched the lead to 29-8.

The Sharks added three more tries via Jacques Vermeulen, Sibusiso Nkosi and Cameron Wright.

While Wimpie van der Walt made sure the Sunwolves’ supporters have something to cheer about with a consolation try before the referee signalled full time.

Man of the match: The forwards did amazing work especially Tendai Mtawarira and hooker Armand van der Merwe - who also got his name on the scoresheet. Curwin Bosch also deserves a mention, but our nod goes to Makazole Mapimpi.

The scorers:

For Sharks:
Mapimpi 2, Van der Merwe, Mtembu, Vermeulen, Nkosi, Wright
Cons: R du Preez 5, Bosch
Pen: R du Preez

For Sunwolves:
: Lemeki, Van der Walt, Tupou
Cons: Matsushima, Nakamura
Pen: Tatekawa


Sharks: 15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Sibusiso Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Louis Schreuder, 8 Lubabalo Mtembu, 7 Jacques Vermeulen, 6 Wian Vosloo, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Ruan Botha (captain), 3 John-Hubert Meyer, 2 Armand van der Merwe, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.        
Replacements: 16 Mahlatse Ralepelle, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 Ross Geldenhuys, 19 Gideon Koegelenberg, 20 Keegan Daniel, 21 Cameron Wright, 22 Marius Louw, 23 Lwazi Mvovo.

Sunwolves: 15 Kotaro Matsushima, 14 Lomano Lemeki, 13 Sione Teaupa, 12 Michael Little, 11 William Tupou, 10 Harumichi Tatekawa, 9 Keisuke Uchida, 8 Willem Britz (captain), 7 Yoshitaka Tokunaga, 6 Michael Leitch, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4 Kazuki Himeno, 3 Takuma Asahara, 2 Yusuke Niwai, 1 Craig Millar.         
Replacements: 16 Atsushi Sakate, 17 Shintaro Ishihara, 18 Hencus van Wyk, 19 Wimpie van der Walt, 20 Pieter Labuschagne, 21 Yutaka Nagare, 22 Ryoto Nakamura, 23 Robbie Robinson.

Referee: Federico Anselmi (Argentina)
Assistant referees: Egon Seconds (South Africa), Archie Sehlako (South Africa)
TMO: Marius Jonker (South Africa)

Makazole Mapimpi (8min), Armand van der Merwe (29min), Lubabalo Mtembu (35min), Makazole Mapimpi (48min), Jacques Vermeulen (54min), Sibusiso Nkosi (67min), and Cameron Wright (75min)
Lomano Lemeki (45min), Wimpie van der Walt (58min), and William Tupou (78min)
Robert du Preez (9min), Robert du Preez (30min), Robert du Preez (36min), Robert du Preez (55min), Robert du Preez (68min), and Curwin Bosch (76min)
Kotaro Matsushima (59min) and Ryoto Nakamura (79min)
Robert du Preez (2min)
Harumichi Tatekawa (24min)
VENUE Durban
REFEREE Federico Anselmi (Argentina)