VIDEO: Sharks humiliate Lions at Ellis Park
SUPER RUGBY REPORT: The Sharks produced their best performance of the season when they smashed the Lions 42-5 at Ellis Park on Friday.
The Sharks outscored their opponents by six tries to one to bag all five points, which sent them to the top of the South African conference and second in the overall standings.
Curwin Bosch was the star of the show with a hand in a number of tries, while Lukhanyo Am and Makazole Mapimpi also were also standout performers during the 80 minutes.
It was also a fitting result for Sharks prop Tendai Mtawarira who became the capped South African player in Super Rugby history when he ran onto the field.
The Sharks dominated play in the opening minutes and they were camped inside the Lions’ 22 for large periods, but they wasted a number of opportunities in the strike zone
However, they eventually broke the deadlock in the 19th minute with Jacques Vermeulen crashing over for a try. The Lions were also a man down at that stage after Rhyno Herbst was yellow carded in the 11th minute for repeated infringements.
The Sharks found themselves further in front in the 22nd minute when Bosch cut the Lions’ defence open in his own half before putting wing Mapimpi into space down the touchline to sprint in for the game’s second try.
The home side struggled to get into the game and they were punished for sloppy defence again in the 27th minute when Am found space between the Lions’ forwards to run in for a try.
Robert du Preez was successful with his first conversion and the Sharks were in control at 17-0.
Du Preez extended his team’s lead once again a few minutes later with an easy penalty.
There was just no reprieve for the Lions with the Sharks continuing their enterprising play and it was Mapimpi who scored his second and the Sharks’ fourth try in the 38th minute.
Du Preez could not convert the score but the Sharks were in a commanding position with a 25-0 lead at half-time.
The second half got underway in the pouring rain and it was the Sharks scored first with a monster of a penalty kick from Bosch to increase his team’s lead to 28 points.
The wet conditions made handling difficult, but the Sharks did find a way over the tryline again in the 72nd minute with prop Thomas du Toit crashing over from close range. Bosch added the extras two points with the conversion.
The Lions eventually scored their first points of the game in the 79th minute via a Sylvian Mahuza try, but it was the Sharks who had the final say with Bosch setting up Aphelele Fassi to score in the corner.
Man of the match: The Sharks’ pack were outstanding, and they laid the foundation for victory. However, the backline players stole the show. Makazole Mapimpi showed what a great finisher he is with two tries, while Lukhanyo Am won a number of turnovers in the midfield and was brilliant with ball in hand. However, the award goes to fullback Curwin Bosch who played a big role in three of his team’s tries. He just terrorised the Lions’ defence when he had the ball.
Tries: Vermeulen, Mapimpi 2, Am, Du Toit, Fassi
Cons: R du Preez Bosch 2
Pens: Du Preez, Bosch
Yellow card: Rhyno Herbst (Lions, 11 – repeated infringements)
SUPER RUGBY LIVE: Lions v Sharks
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Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Tyrone Green, 13 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 12 Lionel Mapoe, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Ruan Vermaak, 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Marnus Schoeman, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Rhyno Herbst, 3 Carlu Sadie, 2 Malcolm Marx (captain), 1 Sithembiso Sithole.
Replacements: 16 Jan-Henning Campher, 17 Nathan McBeth, 18 Frans van Wyk, 19 Wilhelm van der Sluys, 20 Stephan Lewies, 21 Nic Groom, 22 Hacjivah Dayimani, 23 Sylvian Mahuza.
Sharks: 15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Lwazi Mvovo, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Louis Schreuder (captain), 8 Daniel du Preez, 7 Jacques Vermeulen, 6 Luke Stringer, 5 Hyron Andrews, 4 Ruben van Heerden, 3 Coenie Oosthuizen, 2 Kerron van Vuuren, 1 Tendai Mtawarira
Replacements: 16 Fez Mbatha, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 Thomas du Toit, 19 JJ van der Mescht, 20 Philip van der Walt, 21 Grant Williams, 22 Kobus van Wyk, 23 Aphelele Fassi.
Referee: Mike Fraser (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Rasta Rasivhenge (South Africa), Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
TMO: Willie Vos (South Africa)
By Warren Fortune