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Lions get semifinal lifeline in Welkom

MATCH REPORT: The Lions kept their Currie Cup semifinal hopes alive with a hard-fought 39-22 win over the Griffons on Friday.

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The Lions were desperate for the win following their 21-29 defeat to the Sharks last weekend.

They were forced to grind in Welkom, but great character made sure they bagged all the points.

The win hands them 36 log points and moves them from seventh to fourth – in the play-off zone.

However, the Gauteng side face a nervy wait as they need the Bulls and WP to lose their respective games to book a spot in the knockout phase.

The Bulls host the Cheetahs and WP take on log-leaders Sharks on Saturday.

For the Griffons the season came to a devastating end.

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The side from Welkom, certainly punched above their weight this season, securing a win over the Bulls and recording some close defeats.

The Griffons put in another brave fight against the Lions, with the teams deadlocked at 7-all in the first quarter of the ferocious fight in Welkom

The visitors came out guns blazing. From the kick-off, they launch relentless attacks and placed loads of pressure on the Griffons.

After nine minutes the Lions opened the scoring. The former BlitzBok Johannes ‘JC’ Pretorius was the beneficiary of a well-worked lineout drive. Sanela Nohamba added the extra for the 7-0 lead.

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Griffons hit back immediately, from the restart Lions misjudged the highball and lock Rian Olivier pounced on the ball and scored. Jaywin Juries levelled matters with a conversion.

The Lions retain the lead courtesy of another successful maul, the Gauteng shifted the ball before Ruben Schoeman powered over the line for the 14-7 lead.

However, they really struggled with the restarts and conceded a penalty. Fortunately for them, Juries pushed his kick wide and the visitors retained their 7-point lead.

The Johannesburg side extended their lead when a well-executed grubber was neatly collected by Boldwin Hansen, who dived over for the five-pointer. 19-7.

The Lions could have had more points on the board, but their individual handling errors and discipline – including a yellow card to try-scorer Schoeman – halted most of their opportunities.

Nonetheless, the Lions still managed to get the better of the Griffons.  And on the brink of halftime, they scored the bonus-point try when captain Jaco Visagie went the length of the field for an incredible try for the  26-7 lead at the break.

The second stanza saw a great start for the Griffons. Great interplay between the backs made sure Carel ‘CJ’ Coetzee went over in the corner for his team’s second try. Juries made no mistake with his conversion.

The Griffons enjoyed a period of momentum and after Nohamba’s penalty, Juries’ offload send Hendrik van Schoor in the gap for the try.

Juries and Nohambe exchanged penalty kicks as the Lions took a 32-22 lead.

With 10 minutes to go Griffons captain Duan Pretorius was yellow carded which was the end of his Currie Cup champagne.

The Lions took full advantage of the extra man and were camping inside the Griffons’ 22.

They eventually were rewarded when Raynard Roetz scored in the corner. Gianni Lombard took over the kicking duties and added the conversion for the crucial bonus-point win.

Teams

Griffons: 15 Duan Pretorius, 14 Domenic Smit, 13 Carel Coetzee, 12 Jandre de Beer, 11 Keanu Vers, 10 Robbie Petzer, 9 Jaywinn Juries, 8 Sokuphumla Xakalashe, 7 Thomas Ongera, 6 Jean Pretorius, 5 Rian Olivier, 4 Wikus Nieuwenhuis, 3 Buhle Nojekwa, 2 Hendrik van Schoor, 1 Xolani Jacobs.
Replacements: 16 Dandre Delport, 17 Stephan de Jager, 18 Hillary Mwajilwa, 19 Michael Benadie, 20 Ludio Williams, 21 Thato Mavundla, 22 Marquit September, 23 Duren Hoffman

Lions: 15 Quan Horn, 14 Boldwin Hansen, 13 Manuel Rass, 12 Rynhardt Jonker, 11 Edwill van der Merwe, 10 Gianni Lombard, 9 Sanele Nohamba, 8 Francke Horn, 7 Jaron Cairns, 6 Johannes Pretorius, 5 Raynard Roets, 4 Ruben Schoeman, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Jaco Visagie (captain), Rhynhardt Runsburger.
Replacements: 16 Pieter Botha, 17 Morgan Naude, 18 Asenathi Ntlabakanye, 19 Emmanuel Tshituka, 20 Travis Gordon, 21 Morne van den Berg, 22 Tyler Bocks, 23 Stean Pienaar

Referee: Aimee Barrett-Theron
Assistant Referees: Phumzile Mbewu, Jonathan Lottering
TMO: AM Jacobs

The scorers:
For Griffons:
Tries: Olivier, Coetzee, Van Schoor
Cons: Juries 2
Pen: Juries

For Lions:
Tries: Pretorius, Schoeman, Hansen, Visagie, Roetz
Cons: Nohamba 3, Lombard
Pens: Nohamba 2

Yellow cards: Ruben Schoeman (Lions, 37 – high tackle), Duane Pretorius (Griffons, 70 – hands in the ruck)

Teams

Griffons: 15 Duan Pretorius, 14 Domenic Smit, 13 Carel Coetzee, 12 Jandre de Beer, 11 Keanu Vers, 10 Robbie Petzer, 9 Jaywinn Juries, 8 Sokuphumla Xakalashe, 7 Thomas Ongera, 6 Jean Pretorius, 5 Rian Olivier, 4 Wikus Nieuwenhuis, 3 Buhle Nojekwa, 2 Hendrik van Schoor, 1 Xolani Jacobs.
Replacements: 16 Dandre Delport, 17 Stephan de Jager, 18 Hillary Mwajilwa, 19 Michael Benadie, 20 Ludio Williams, 21 Thato Mavundla, 22 Marquit September, 23 Duren Hoffman

Lions: 15 Quan Horn, 14 Boldwin Hansen, 13 Manuel Rass, 12 Rynhardt Jonker, 11 Edwill van der Merwe, 10 Gianni Lombard, 9 Sanele Nohamba, 8 Francke Horn, 7 Jaron Cairns, 6 Johannes Pretorius, 5 Raynard Roets, 4 Ruben Schoeman, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Jaco Visagie (captain), Rhynhardt Runsburger.
Replacements: 16 Pieter Botha, 17 Morgan Naude, 18 Asenathi Ntlabakanye, 19 Emmanuel Tshituka, 20 Travis Gordon, 21 Morne van den Berg, 22 Tyler Bocks, 23 Stean Pienaar

Referee: Aimee Barrett-Theron
Assistant Referees: Phumzile Mbewu, Jonathan Lottering
TMO: AM Jacobs

 

 

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