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Lyon take Bok lock to court

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French Top 14 club Lyon announced on Monday they are taking legal action against Franco Mostert for breach of contract, reports SaRugbyMag.co.za

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The Lions and Springbok lock signed a two-year deal with Lyon, which was announced in March, and he was supposed to join the club at the end of the Rugby Championship. Mostert failed to report for duty and has instead moved to the Ricoh Black Rams in Japan, with the aim of returning to the Lions ahead of next year’s Super Rugby tournament.

‘Lyon Rugby notes with horror that Franco Mostert is in Japan and is training with the Ricoh Black Rams while he has committed to 2 years with our club,’ reads the club’s official website statement.

‘Faced with this serious violation of contract, law and basic values of rugby which are a commitment to be respected, the club will take all the necessary measures to see justice is done and today is approaching the competent legal and rugby authorities.’

After a superb Super Rugby campaign, Mostert made his Springbok debut in the mid-year Test series against Ireland. He did, however, agree to join Lyon before his involvement with the national squad.

Cheetahs unstoppable against Lions to get home final

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The Free State Cheetahs run the Golden Lions off their feet in the semi final to beat them 55-17.

final

Playing at home the Free State Cheetahs showed from the start that they want to run the Golden Lions of the field playing a brilliant attacking game.

The Lions had to defend with everything they had and it was also the Free State that got the first points on the board with two penalties in quick session to take a 6-0 lead.

The Lions had some opportunities on attack but they were met with great defence from the Free State men. Each time the Lions got into Free State twenty two they either lost the ball or got knocked back in the tackle.

It was great hand speed and handling from both the forwards and backs that send Pietersen over for the Free State first try in the corner. The Lions keep on giving away penalties with Niel Marais  not minding at all to kick them over.

The score quickly moved up to 19-0 and the Lions started to look desperate. With the Lions on attack the ball was turned over and Hugo kicked the ball down field with Pietersen winning the race to the ball and scored his second of the match.

This took the score to 26-0 for the Free State Cheetahs and also the score the teams went into the break.

The second half started perfect for the Free State as they scored straight from the kick-off with again great handling from both forwards and backs. This took the score to 33-0 with the Lions in desperate trouble.

The Lions were able to get over the whitewash for their first try and on the board but with them giving away penalties the Free State kept the scoreboard ticking on the other side.

After 60 minutes we had the Free State leading the Lions 36-5.

The game opened up even more and it was the Lions who scored next from their own twenty two to make the score 36-10 after 65 min.

The Free State came back and scored another try with Benjamin going over in the corner.

With the Free State on a roll the Lions just did not have any answers for the attacking ability of this Free State side as they score tries at will to move the score to 55-10 with Pietersen getting over for his third try.

The Lions had the last say scoring the last try of the match but was well beaten by a brilliant Free State Cheetahs side 55-17.

The scorers:

For the Free State Cheetahs:
Tries: Petersen 3, Jordaan, Benjamin, Blommetjies
Cons: Marais 3
Pens: Marais 4
Yellow card: Benjamin

For the Golden Lions:
Tries: Mahuza 2, Lerm
Yellow card: Brink, Coetzee

SF1 Preview – Free State Cheetahs v Golden Lions

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This will be my pick for the weekend between the two semi finals in this years Currie Cup when the Free State Cheetahs host the Golden Lions in Bloemfontein on Saturday afternoon.

first-semi

Arguably the two most exciting teams in South Africa right now playing a style of rugby which most supporters have been longing the Springboks to adopt as well. It is a high risk but equally high reward game that they play but surely a type of game that will pull the numbers back in our stadiums.

Although the Currie Cup have not been the competition of yesteryear anymore, it is still the premiere competition in South Africa with a proud history which teams still want to win. This first semi final between the Free State and the Golden Lions are expected to be a close one and going down to the wire.

The Free State have gone unbeaten throughout the Currie Cup so far and if they do lift the trophy at the end of the season they will have done that without losing any games throughout, much like what the Golden Lions did last year.

With most of their injured players back and high on confidence they will go into the match as favorites but we know this Golden Lions team have proven the last two to three years that they can win games from nothing and have the players to do so as well.

With a great balance between forwards and exciting backs both teams can attack and score tries from anywhere on the field and it will be a simple question of who will make the lease number of mistakes come Saturday. We can expect a high scoring game and with everything to play for, expect no player to hold anything back.

When the two teams met earlier in the competition the Free State Cheetahs came from behind to take the match against the Lions. Knock out rugby can be cruel sometimes and one of these teams season will end.

The Lions have lost a few players to injury in the lead up and a few more of their Springboks are already with their Japanese clubs which forced coach Ackermann to dig deep not just for this game but this year in developing his next generation of stars.

The Free State had the luxury of having most of their squad that played Super Rugby throughout the Currie Cup and crucial injured players are also back for selection which was great for coach Smith just before this important semi final.

It will be a great battle between the two midfield combination with inform Francois Venter and Nico Lee taking on the Lions, Jacques Nel and Rohan Janse van Rensburg. In both sides these men have been pivot players in creating most of the attacks for their teams this year.

Other great battle will be upfront with Johan Coetzee, Torsten van Jaarsveld and Ox Nche against the Lions, Julian Redelinghuys, Malcom Marx and Jacques van Rooyen.

Benedict did a great write up on the match-ups in both semi finals, get his opinion here

Predictions: Both teams have there plus and minuses but at the end their can only be one winner and I believe this is the year for the Cheetahs, giving the match to them by 5 points or less.

Teams:

Free State Cheetahs Team:

15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Francois Venter (captain), 12 Nico Lee, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Niel Marais, 9 Shaun Venter, 8 Niell Jordaan, 7 Uzair Cassiem, 6 Paul Schoeman, 5 Reniel Hugo, 4 Justin Basson, 3 Johan Coetzee, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld, 1 Ox Nche

Replacements: 16 Jacques du Toit, 17 Charles Marais, 18 Armandt Koster, 19 Henco Venter, 20 Tian Meyer, 21Fred Zeilinga, 22 Rayno Benjamin, 23 Conraad van Vuuren

The Golden Lions Team:

15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Koch Marx, 13 Jacques Nel, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Anthony Volmink, 10 Jaco van der Walt, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Fabian Booysen, 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Kwagga Smith (captain), 5 Bobby de Wee, 4 Ruan Ackermann, 3 Julian Redelinghuys, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Jacques van Rooyen

Replacements:  16 Akker van der Merwe, 17 Corne Fourie, 18 Ruan Dreyer, 19 Lourens Erasmus, 20 Ruaan Lerm, 21 Faf de Klerk, 22 Stokkies Hanekom, 23 Sylvian Mahuza

Golden Lions team named for semi’s

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Golden Lions

Golden Lions coach Johan Ackermann have picked his best possible side to take on the Free State Cheetahs in Bloemfontein on Saturday in the first semi final.

The team will be led out by Springbok Sevens star Kwagga Smith as they try to defend the trophy they won last year. With a few injuries and most of their Springboks already on their way to Japan, Ackermann had to start building depth in the union this year.

With a string pack and speedy talented backline one will expect a great team between the two most exciting teams this year in the Currie Cup.

The game kick-off is at 15:00 and a supporters’ bus full of Lions supporters will leave from Emirates Airline Park on Saturday morning en route to Bloemfontein.

The Golden Lions Team:

  1.  Jacques van Rooyen
  2. Malcolm Marx
  3. Julian Redelinghuys
  4. Ruan Ackermann
  5. Bobby de Wee
  6. Albertus “Kwagga” Smith ©
  7. Cyle Brink
  8. Fabian Booysen
  9. Ross Cronje
  10. Jaco van der Walt
  11. Anthony Volmink
  12. Rohan Janse van Rensburg
  13. Jacques Nel
  14. Koch Marx
  15. Andries Coetzee

 Replacements: 

  1. Armand “Akker van der Merwe
  2. Corné Fourie
  3. Ruan Dreyer
  4. Lourens Erasmus
  5. Ruaan Lerm
  6. Faf de Klerk
  7. Stokkies Hanekom
  8. Sylvian Mahuza

A Classic awaits us in Bloemfontein on Saturday

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This weekend we will have the two semi finals of this years Currie Cup and the first match will see the two most exciting teams in the competition this year, Free State Cheetahs hosting the Golden Lions in Bloemfontein.

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This have all the making of a classic and it is actually sad that they do not meet in the final, take nothing away from the Blue Bulls.

The Free State have been undefeated throughout the competition and will try and replicate what the Golden Lions did last year to go all the way in lifting the trophy without losing a match. Although this year saw a much shorter version of the Currie Cup and no home and away fixtures, the Free State Cheetahs have been a class act and deserve the position they find themselves in.

They have been the team with the Golden Lions who scored the most tries and the style of rugby won over some much needed fans for the men from Bloemfontein. Coach Franco Smith went with a no fear attitude and gave his players freedom to express themselves on the field from the first game. He said in the week although this is a semi final, they will not change anything on how they go into the game.

I have been involved in enough play-off matches to know that your build-up for a semifinal and Final starts from round one,” Smith told rugby365. “From day one you have to play the game [style] that you want to play in a Final.  There might be one or two things we do differently, but we have worked on winning every game and the semifinal is the same.”

He said they will continue to strive to produce a better product. They used the past fortnight – a break courtesy of a South African Rugby Union decision to postpone the play-offs for a week – to recharge and reset. “However, we also look at the big picture. While the semifinal and Final are important, the plan is to be more competitive in Super Rugby next year and to ensure there are more players at the disposal of the Springbok coach [Allister Coetzee],” he said of a team that has not finished inside the top 10 in Super Rugby since 2013. That is why we want to grow as a team and create better players.

The Golden Lions had a mixed bag this year but when they did click  as a team they played some of the best rugby we have seen. Their never say die attitude and attacking ability from everywhere on the field makes them one of the more dangerous teams in the competition.

The Golden Lions have been disrupted much more than previous years with a few being part of the Springbok group and also some to injuries.

With all of that the Golden Lions have still shown that they have efficient depth in the union and even without most of their Springboks (with Japanese contracts) they are still one of the favorites too take the title again this year.

Does not matter which way you lean to……..this game will be a big one come Saturday and if you are a betting man, put your money in your pocket and rather bet on something you can be sure off.

Golden Lions fight back to take win against Sharks

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The Golden Lions came from behind to win against the Sharks on Friday 28-16.

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It was made out as a Quarter Final match when the Sharks and the Golden Lions played on Friday with the team that loses out of the play-offs. This added even more spice to this clash between two of the top teams in the country.

The Sharks played a power game and beat the Lions at the breakdowns and scrums which gave them allot of ball to play with.

With the Lions trying to counter attack at every opportunity the Sharks defence had to be good which it was keep the Lions without scoring in the first half.

It was the Sharks that put first points on the board with a penalty and soon after scored the only try in the first half to take a 10-0 lead at halftime.

It was the Sharks that scored with a penalty first in the second half but the Lions got their first try quickly after that with Kwagga scoring. That made the score Sharks 13 Lions 7 after 46 min.

The Lions started to get momentum and with a yellow card against the Sharks for lifting a player in the tackle they also got the one man advantage.

It did not take long for them to take advantage of the extra man and scored their second try of the match. With a penalty soon after the Lions took the lead 18-16 after 64 min.

With the Sharks dominated most of the scrums the Lions dominated the lineouts stealing a few balls from them and great attacking play from it making meters on attack.

With the Sharks pressing hard to get points they just kept bashing with forwards making it easy for the Lions to defend and get a turnovers. With one such turnover they came from their own half yet again to score and took the lead to 25-16 after 71 min.

The Sharks started looking to be desperate with throwing the ball around but did not make any impact as the Lions defense was good enough.

If the poor attacking play from the Sharks was not good enough they got a yellow card for a shoulder tackle late in the game. The Lions took the penalty and stretch the lead to 28-16 after 78 min.

The scored stayed the same the Golden Lions secured a semi-final spot in the Currie Cup.

Scorers:

For Golden Lions:
Tries: K Smith, Mnisi, Mahuza
Cons: Van der Walt, Coetzee
Pens: Van der Walt, Coetzee

For Sharks:
Try: Claassens
Con: Bosch
Pens: Bosch 3
Yellow Cards: Kleinhans (50 mins – dangerous tackle), Esterhuizen (77 mins – shoulder charge)

Match Preview – Golden Lions v Sharks

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Friday afternoon at 17:00 the Sharks will have to face the Golden Lions in a crucial Currie Cup match which can be seen as a quarter final for the team that looses this game will surely miss out on a semi final spot.

lions-v-sharks

Western Province will have Boland at home and should be able to secure their full five points which can either mean the Sharks are in a home semi final or not in it at all. The Golden Lions are playing to stay in the competition as only a win will secure them a spot in the semi finals.

Both teams have been strengthen by returning Springboks to add some spice to this clash.

The Sharks had the perfect start until midway through the season when they where beaten by Western Province at Newlands which saw them slip away from the top of the log and in danger now of not making the play-offs. At times the Sharks have played some great rugby and then at times some poor rugby as well.

The Lions have not had much of a different season as well, with losses coming against Griquas, Blue Bulls and Free State which have put them in a situation which can result in them not even making the play-offs to defend their title from last year.

One of the interesting match-ups will come from the scrums and it will be a battle from start to finish and with both teams willing to give the ball air with some exciting players one should expect a brilliant game of rugga’s on Friday from theses two teams.

Ruan Dreyer will start for the Golden Lions when they take on the Sharks as he replaces Julian Redelinghuys who has joined the Springboks. In another change to the front row Robbie Coetzee will start in the hooker berth with Malcolm Marx warming the bench.

And as part of the teams’ rotation system Ross Cronjé and Andries Coetzee start at nine and fifteen respectively.

 For the Sharks, coach Robert Du Preez has also named his strongest possible team to play on Friday which sees Mvovo coming in at wing for the match.

The Sharks have had some seriouse injury problems but do welcome back Daniels who will also captain the team. Stephan Lewies will undergo a late fitness test to determine his availability. Philip van der Walt has not recovered sufficiently from concussion and therefore has not been considered for selection.

 “We approaching this match as a quarter-final and we want to win. It’s going to come down to discipline and taking opportunities, Du Preez said.

“We are under no illusions about the enormity of the task and respect our opposition, however our focus is on sticking to our structures and game-plan.”

Prediction: It is a tough one, it is going to be really the team that take their chances and I think the home ground advantage will work in Lions favorite so giving this one for the Golden Lions.

Teams:

Golden Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Koch Marx, 13 Jacques Nel, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Anthony Volmink, 10 Jaco van der Walt, 9 Ross Cronjé, 8 Ruaan Lerm, 7 Ruan Ackermann, 6 Kwagga Smith (c), 5 Bobby de Wee, 4 JP du Preez, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Dylan Smith
Replacements: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Jacques van Rooyen, 18 Fabian Booysen, 19 Cyle Brink, 20 Dillon Smit, 21 Howard Mnisi, 22 Sylvian Mahuza

Sharks: 15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Rhyno Smith, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Inny Radebe, 9 Michael Claassens, 8 Keegan Daniel (c), 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Francois Kleinhans, 5 Ruan Botha, 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 1 Thomas du Toit
Replacements: 16 Franco Marais, 17 John-Hubert Meyer, 18 Stephan Lewies/Jean Droste, 19 Khaya Majola, 20 Stefan Ungerer, 21 Garth April, 22 Wandile Mjekevu

Lions demolish EP Kings in PE

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The Golden Lions cruised to a 71-7 win against the EP Kings in PE on Saturday, with it all to play for against the Sharks next week in the last round of matches.

Not too many people expected the Kings to put up much of a fight against this Golden Lions on Saturday as they have not had any great year in the boardroom, Super Rugby nor Currie Cup.

With the Golden Lions dominating the scrums, line outs and all the ball, all the Kings could do was defend, defend, defend for most of the game.

The Lions made a few handling mistakes and the Kings defense was great, slowing the ball down which frustrated the Lions in the first half.

After 18 min the Golden Lions finally got the ball over the line to score their first try of the match and took the lead 7-0. The Kings put some brilliant phases together and they got over for their first try with excellent speed and hands to make the scores level at 7 all.

It took the Lions not long to get there game back in playing some great running rugby controlling the match  and the scoreboard with a brilliant try from Mnisi. This opened the door for the Lions to score two quick tries through Marx and Kwagga to take a 26-7 lead at halftime

The second half started for the Lions as they ended it with a great try to extend the lead and really pulled away from the Kings on the scoreboard. It seemed that it was just coming too easily for the Lions from there on end and got their second try of the second half soon after.

The Lions never let go,unfortunately for the EP Kings,  as the Lions just kept on scoring tries and won the game 71-7 at the end scoring 11 tries to 1.

This make next week game a quarter final between the Lions and the Sharks with the loser possibly out of the race for a semi final spot.

Scorers:

For EP Kings 
Try: Mastriet
Con: De Wet

For Golden Lions  
Tries: Ackermann, Mnisi 2, K Marx, Smith 3, Volmink, Nel 2, Mahuza
Cons: Van der Walt 8

Match Preview – Free State v Golden Lions

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It will be a mouthwatering Currie Cup match on Thursday night when the current log leaders host the defending champions in Bloemfontein.

cheetahs-v-lions

The Free State is the only team that have been unbeaten this far and it does not get easier especially when you face a confident Lions side who just demolished Western Province over the weekend.

With so many teams still able to make the semi finals no teams place is certain yet and it is all to play for.

Free State is not left behind on confidence as they have now beaten the Blue Bulls, Western Province and the Shark in this years Currie Cup. That makes this good run even more special for the men from Bloemfontein is that that got wins away from home against the Sharks and WP.

Lions coach Johan Ackermann says they can’t be overly confident even after their smashing of Western Province last weekend.

“We’ve got two away games left and, as we saw when the Sharks went to Cape Town and when Province came to Johannesburg, it’s not easy getting wins away from home,” Ackermann told the Business Day.

It is a sort turn around for both teams playing on a Thursday night and their will be some sore bodies.

 

Cheetahs coach Franco Smith says that pressure isn’t an issue for his side going into the clash.

“We have been playing under pressure for the whole season. Every game has its own pressure and the more you make of the pressure, the more pressure is there for you,” he told Supersport.

 

The Lions made only two changes to their side that beat Western Province with Ferreira coming in for Erasmus at lock and Brink coming in for Ackermann who drops to the bench.

Muller will join the bench as back-up lock and Scholtz as back-up at prop.

The Free State have made a few changes to their side with Shaun Venter that comes in for Tian Meyer at scrum-half and hooker Torsten Van Jaarsveld is named as captain. William Small-Smith replaces Michael Van der Spuy at number 12 while Niel Marais gets a start over Fred Zeilinga at fly-half. Up front, Justin Basson comes in to the second-row in place of Carl Wegner.

Prediction: This will be as tight as my monthly budget….Cheetahs by 4.

The teams: 

Free State Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Rayno Benjamin, 13 Nico Lee, 12 William Small-Smith, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Niel Marais, 9 Shaun Venter, 8 Niell Jordaan, 7 Uzair Cassiem, 6 Paul Schoeman, 5 Reniel Hugo, 4 Justin Basson, 3 Tom Botha, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld (c), 1 Tshego Nche
Replacements: 16 Jacques du Toit, 17 Charles Marais, 18 Armandt Koster, 19 Tienie Burger, 20 Niell Jordaan, 21 Tian Meyer, 22 Fred Zeilinga

Golden Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Selom Gavor, 13 Jacques Nel, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Anthony Volmink, 10 Jaco van der Walt, 9 Ross Cronje (c), 8 Fabian Booysen, 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Albertus ‘Kwagga’ Smith, 5 Andries Ferreira, 4 JP du Preez, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Dylan Smith.
Replacements: 16 Armand ‘Akker’ van der Merwe, 17 Pieter Scholtz, 18 Martin Muller, 19 Ruan Ackermann, 20 Dillon Smit, 21 Ashlon Davids, 22 Howard Mnisi.

Date: Thursday, September 16
Venue: Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein
Kick-off: 19:00 local (17:00 GMT)
Referee: Jaco van Heerden
Assistant referees: Lourens van der Merwe, Jaco Kotze
TMO: JJ Wagner

Golden Lions run Province off their feet

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It was a total demolishing of Western Province by the hands of a brilliant Lions team on the night when they beat them 58-32.

lions-wen

One of the games of the weekend as the Golden Lions hosted Western Province in Johannesburg. It was a must win for both teams to stay in touch for a play-off spot and everything was thrown at it.

The Golden Lions shocked Western Province with a try from the kick-off within 30 seconds of the start taking a 5-0 lead.

Western Province were able to pull three back after some good attack in the Lions twenty two making the score 5-3.

The teams traded penalties for the next 5 minutes giving the Lions at the end the lead of 8-6 after 12 min. The Lions then took the WP backline on again and scored another brilliant try to take the lead 13-6.

Province defense was poor and within a minute they took WP defense again apart and scored their third try. Keeping on with their running game the Lions did not stop their and kept the pressure on Western Province.

Province did try hard to get back into the game but the defense from the Lions was up to what Province came with.

The great attack from the Golden Lions did not stopped there as they ran in 6 tries at the end of the first 40 min.

Put it to poor defense or great attacking, it does not matter it was a try feast from the Lions in that first forty minutes.

Province did score a try through Zas but that could not stop the flow from the Lions as they went into the break with 37-13.

The second half started the same as the first with the Lions scoring first and Province adding a few more to the 29 missed tackles in the first half.

It took a while for the Lions to score again but what a try from Kwagga Smit to give the Lions their fifty points in the match.

Province had a good period and were made work hard to score their second try of the match making the score 51-20 for the Lions after 64 min.

The Lions was not finished as they got Kwagga over for his second try with 6 min to go taking the lead to 58-27.

At the end the Golden Lions was just 58-32 points better than Province.

Scorers:

Golden Lions – Tries: Jacques Nel, Robbie Coetzee, Andries Coetzee, JP du Preez, Rohan Janse van Rensburg, Anthony Volmink, Kwagga Smith (2). Conversions: Jaco van der Walt (6). Penalties: Van der Walt (2).
Western Province – Tries: Leolin Zas, Jacques Vermeulen (2), Dewaldt Duvenage. Conversions: Rob du Preez (3). Penalties: Du Preez (2)

 Man of the Match – Ross Cronje

man-of-match

Match Preview – Golden Lions v Western Province

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golden-lions-v-wp

Last years finalist, the Golden Lions and Western Province will meet for the first time after the final which saw the Golden Lions ended the season undefeated and putting their names on the Currie Cup.

Many months have past since that final and the Golden Lions are also a different team as where they had no players with Meyers Springboks they now have the most of any other union in Coetzee squad. The Lions have also evolved since that final and had a great Super Rugby season behind then as well reaching the final.

It has not been smooth sailing though for the Currie Cup side with losses now against Griquas and the Blue Bulls last weekend. They go into this weekends game against Western Province with a much needed to win for them as they sit 5th on the log with 12 points after 4 games, the same log points as Western Province.

The team that wins the clash this Friday will have an inside line as we getting nearer to the play-offs and with only four spots available the logs is starting to get congested in the middle.

Ackermann and his troops will be first to admit that they did not had the best game last week against the Blue Bulls and it about the worst game from this quality side we have seen the past two years. Their defense was terrible and with the rush defense from the Blue Bulls they could not get their backline away like they used to.

This weekend match against Western Province give them an added challenge as they have some of the countries most exciting runners in the game. Western Province thrives on broken play and they can punish you if you are not clinical and do not protect the ball as the Sharks founded out last week at Newlands.

Coach Ackermann have raised his concerns in the week on Western Province danger men when he spoke to Super Sport, “They took a lot of confidence out of the win. The Sharks and Cheetahs on paper are the most consistent sides since Super Rugby,” Ackermann said.

If you look at that pack of forwards and if you can afford to put Jean Deysel on the bench then you know you have a lot of depth in your pack. They took a lot of confidence in their pack’s performanceThey have dangerous guys on the outside and (Cheslin) Kolbe at the back. I think it will be a nice high-tempo game. Our set phase has to be good because with JC up front they are strong and they have shown they can contest the lineouts so that will be a big challenge for us.”

I do believe our set phase will be critical and then hopefully our attack will be much more fluent than it was in the last week or two.”

Western Province will again look at their flyhalf Robert Du Preez to put another stellar performance together as he dominated the game against the Sharks. The young flyhalf was absolutely brilliant on attack and change his game the whole time making the Sharks wondering what he will do next.

This one will most properly be decided by the forwards and it will be a hell of a battle. The Lions was bullied at the set pieces and rucks by the Blue Bulls and will want to make a huge step up this week. With Elstadt back in the Province team they know they going to have a battle.

Both teams have suffered some injuries but that is now part of the game and the replacements will have to step up.

Prediction: It is a difficult one as Province have been good the past two weeks but the Lions in Johannesburg does not just roll over for any team…Will go with home team by 5 points but it can easily be the other way around.

Teams:

Golden Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Selom Gavor, 13 Jacques Nel, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Antony Volmink, 10 Jaco van der Walt, 9 Ross Cronje (c), 8 Fabian Booysen, 7 Ruan Ackermann, 6 Kwagga Smith, 5 Lourens Erasmus, 4 JP du Preez, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Dylan Smith
Replacements: 16 Armand van der Merwe, 17 Jacques van Rooyen, 18 Andries Ferreira, 19 Cyle Brink, 20 Ruaan Lerm / Stef de Wit, 21 Ashlon Davids, 22 Howard Mnisi

Western Province: 15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Werner Kok, 13 EW Viljoen, 12 Johnny Kotze, 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Kobus van Dyk, 7 Jurie van Vuuren, 6 Rynhardt Elstadt, 5 Chris van Zyl (captain), 4 Jan de Klerk, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Mike Willemse, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Replacements: 16 Neil Rautenbach, 17 Alistair Vermaak, 18 JP Smith, 19 Jacques Vermeulen, 20 Eital Bredenkamp, 21 Dewaldt Duvenage, 22 Scott van Breda

 

Booysen starts at eight for Golden Lions

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Johan AcGolden Lionskermann have not made many changes to his side to face the Western Province team this Friday in Johannesburg

The Lions fans will welcome back Ruan Dreyer after a long injury lay-off as he returns to the playing field. Ackermann have put in JP du Preez who will pack down at lock with Lourenns Erasmus.

Ruan Ackermann will move to the number seven jumper and Fabian Booysen will start at number eight. At the backs, Jaco van der Walt gets the number ten jumper and Rohan Janse van Rensburg moves to twelve with Jacques Nell coming in at thirteen.

With the injury to Coutnall Skosan, Selom Gavor gets a run at the wing for the Golden Lions and Andries Ferreira also returns from injury to take up a spot on the bench.

The Lions need to win the game to keep themselves in with a chance of the playoffs and to defend the title they won in spectacular fashion last year.

Lions coach Johan Ackermann is wary for the challenge this weekend against Province as he spoke to SuperSport

They took a lot of confidence out of the win. The Sharks and Cheetahs on paper are the most consistent sides since Super Rugby,” Ackermann said. “If you look at that pack of forwards and if you can afford to put Jean Deysel on the bench then you know you have a lot of depth in your pack. They took a lot of confidence in their pack’s performance.”

They have dangerous guys on the outside and (Cheslin) Kolbe at the back. I think it will be a nice high-tempo game. Our set phase has to be good because with JC up front they are strong and they have shown they can contest the lineouts so that will be a big challenge for us.

I do believe our set phase will be critical and then hopefully our attack will be much more fluent than it was in the last week or two.

Teams:

Golden Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Selom Gavor, 13 Jacques Nel, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Antony Volmink, 10 Jaco van der Walt, 9 Ross Cronje (c), 8 Fabian Booysen, 7 Ruan Ackermann, 6 Kwagga Smith, 5 Lourens Erasmus, 4 JP du Preez, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Dylan Smith
Replacements: 16 Armand van der Merwe, 17 Jacques van Rooyen, 18 Andries Ferreira, 19 Cyle Brink, 20 Ruaan Lerm / Stef de Wit, 21 Ashlon Davids, 22 Howard Mnisi

Current Currie Cup log Standings:

PosTeamPWLDPFPAPDBPPts
11181235319915400
21082032819513300
33201127388900
411006475700
5220086394700

 

Currie Cup Wrap – WP and Blue Bulls biggest winners

0

Western Province and the Blue Bulls was the biggest winners this weekend in round 5 of this years Currie Cup with wins over the Sharks at Newlands and Golden Lions at Loftus.

CC2016 Bigger

It was a real important win for  both teams and almost a must win situation for both teams as they faced two of the top teams in the Currie Cup at home. The Free State Cheetahs kept to their winning ways in Bloemfontein against the EP Kings and Boland sprang a surprise with a great win over the Pumas on Friday.

In the midweek game in Kimberley Griquas was too good for the EP Kings with a brilliant second half making the log looking nicely for a great second half of this years Currie Cup.

PosTeamPWLDPFPAPDBPPts
11181235319915400
21082032819513300
33201127388900
411006475700
5220086394700
696122732343900
7136704133763700
8114523433073600
9220066402600
10431098762200

Here is a roundup of all the matches this week…

Final Griquas

It was a close game in the first half but Griquas ran riot in second half to take a convincing 47-24 win over the EP Kings.

The first half just not seemed to wanted to get started for both teams as both tried to run the ball but made too many mistakes to really get over the defensive structures.

Griquas was the team with most of the possession but made as much mistakes on attack but one had to give credit to the EP Kings scrambled defense.

It was Griquas who scored first through Putuma and gave them the early lead of 7-0.

EP Kings hit back straight away with a beautiful backline move to send Isaacs over in the corner. The try stunned Griquas a bit and they started to put pressure on themselves.

Griquas was the next to score after sustain pressure on the Kings line when Janse Van Rensburg went over for their second try of the match.

Many believed it would be here where the Griquas will pull away but the EP Kings had other plan first with a long range penalty and then a beautiful try just before half time with Isaacs again the man over.

That gave them the lead of 17-14 at halftime.

Griquas came out in the second half like a house of fire and scored three quick tries to take the lead and control over the game.

It would always have been difficult for the EP Kings to come back from a 35-17 score line but they never gave up.

Life for the Kings was not made easy with them having a player send-off with a yellow card which also saw Griquas scored another try, their sixth of the match to get the score to 40-17 and totally in control with EP Kings having to play with no ball at all.

EP Kings did come back at the end of the match to score a late try and bring the final score to 47-24.

Scorers:

Griquas – Tries: Wandile Putuma, Jono van Rensburg, Ederies Arendse, Alshaun Bock, AJ Coertzen (2), Eric Zana. Conversions: Clinton Swart (6).
EP Kings – Tries: Alcino Izaacs (2), Cullen Callopy. Conversions: Lungelo Goza (2), Pieter-Steyn de Wet. Penalty: Goza.

Boland win

The Boland Kavaliers have surprised on Friday afternoon after beating the Pumas in Wellington 25-22 in a tight affair.

The Pumas did not help themselves with earning a red card in the 26th minute of the game and had to play the rest of the game with 14 men. The Pumas midfield player Fisher was red carded for using the elbow on Van Wyk after a tackle.

One must say that even with a man down the Pumas did not let go of the match and they were in it until the last minute if the match. The played well and put a brilliant performance together with the man down.

With the win Boland have moved up to sixth place above Western Province but Province have two games in hands. The Pumas have not find this season as happy one with four losses out of four games and sitting second last on the log at this stage.

For the Pumas it was once again their inspirational captain Renaldo Bothma who stood out in attack and on defense putting like always, his body on the line.

With a bit better day with the boot the Pumas could have had a different outcome as Brummer missed to easy kicks.

Boland captain Ryan Nel was forced off in the 11th minute after being hit by a dangerous tackle which caused a flurry. Boland were awarded a penalty and Namibian flyhalf Theuns Kotze got his sides’ first points.

The game never got away from either team and it was in the balance till the end of the game which made for a great contest to watch.

Pumas then scored in the dying minutes of the game through Kevin Luiters with some fantastic running skills but it was not enough to give his side the win.

The Scorers:

For Boland:
Tries: Carelse, Adendorff, Louw
Cons: Kotze 2
Pens: Kotze
Drop goal: Kotze
Yellow card: Adendorff

For Pumas:
Tries: Herne, Bothma, Van Wyk, Luiters
Cons: Brummer
Red card: Fisher

Bulls win

It was seen as one of the games of the weekend as the Blue Bulls hosted the Golden Lions at Loftus.

The game struggled to get going with both teams struggle to get any forward momentum and making too many handling errors. In ten minutes we had more scrums than what we seen in most eighty minute games.

The scrums were a struggle from the start with both teams giving away penalties and free kicks.

The Blue Bulls got into an early lead with two penalties from the boot of Schoeman.

The Lions did get one back when Boshoff got his first penalty over to take the lead down by three points.

It was the Golden Lions that scored first from a great string run from Rohan Janse van Rensburg. It also gave the Lions the lead but the Blue Bulls hit straight back with an intercept try to again lead the Blue Bulls with 16-10 after 32 min.

It seems that sparked both teams to star playing some great running rugby and giving the small crowd something to cheer about.

The end of the half was all the Lions as they attack well past the hooter to get that try and go in the lead at half time but the Blue Bulls defense was brilliant to keep them out.

The Blue Bulls took the lead 16-10 at half time and all to play for in the second half.

The second half the Lions started the better of the two teams but again the Blue Bulls defense was again up to anything the Lions thrown at them.

They were also getting better momentum on attack and score their second try from a great lineout move to extend their lead to 21-10 after 50 min.

It seems that the Blue Bulls was much better in the contact situations and hitting the rucks much harder that the Lions forwards.

It was Kwagga Smith that got the Lions in back in the game with a great try to get them again within 4 points of the Blue Bulls.

This did not last long as the Blue Bulls again had a great scrum and force a penalty to make it again a seven-point lead with 16 min to play.

The Blue Bulls defense seemed to have been doing enough to win the game as they just kept on hitting the Lions back on attack and getting turnovers as easy as ice cream on a Sunday.

The Blue Bulls got another try through a great break from Travis Ismaiel and with that sealed the game.

The Lions kept on making mistakes on attack losing the ball in contact and just could not get momentum.

This was one of the better wins for the Blue Bulls beating the Lions in defense and with some brilliant defense.

Scorers:

Blue Bulls – Tries: Travis Ismaiel, Marvin Orie, Joshua Stander. Conversions: Tian Schoeman (2). Penalties: Schoeman (4).
Golden Lions – Tries: Howard Mnisi, Kwagga Smith. Conversions: Marnitz Boshoff (2). Penalty: Boshoff.

Full Free State win Kings

The Free State and EP Kings was always going to be a difficult match for the Kings who had to play three games in seven days this week.

The start of the game was very loose and plenty of mistakes from both sides but more so from the Free State.

It was the EP Kings that scored first with some brilliant handling skills and speed in the backline to take the early lead in the match.

The Cheetahs came back with two penalties before they scored their first try through Lee after a typical Free State backline move. This gave the Free State the lead and the ascendancy in the match.

The second try for the Cheetahs did not take long to stretch that lead to 18-7 after 25 min.

The rest of the half was more or less with both teams trying but mistakes stopping their attacks.

The Free State did score one more try before halftime with Schoeman bouldering over in the corner.

That gave the Free State a halftime lead of 23-10.

The second half was much about the same with both teams trying to let the ball do the work but with so many mistakes on attack no one could get dominance early on to get over the others defense.

It was the Free State that finally went over for the first time when Schoeman yet again crosses the line for the Free State bonus point try.

The Free State started to put more phases together and the passes started to stick as they pull quickly away on the scoreboard with two quick tries.

That took the score to 38-13 with 10 min to go.

The Free State were not finished as they started to dominate all aspects of the game. Lee put the perfect kick through and collect it himself to score his second try of the match.

Both teams run in some more tries but at the end the Free State was just too good for the EP Kings winning the game 57-25.

For the Cheetahs:
Tries: Lee 2, Botha, Schoeman 2, Marais 2, Nche, Marais
Cons: Zeilinga, Marais 2
Pens: Zeilinga 2

For the Kings:
Tries: Greyling, Klaasen, Jobo
Cons: De Wet, Marais
Pens: De Wet
Drop goal: De Wet

WP wen

Western Province ended the Sharks unbeaten run on Saturday at Newlands when they beat the Sharks with 34-27.

It was made out of one of the matches of the weekend at Newlands between these two sides and they did not disappoint.

The game start fast with both teams wanting to run the ball but it was a great inside pass from Robert Du Preez to Kotze that got Western Province their first try of the match.

The Sharks quickly hit back with a penalty to get on the scoreboard  after just a few minutes. Western Province quickly extend the lead with a brilliant kick ahead from Du Preez which found the speedy Kok to score a great try for the sevens star.

The Sharks and Western Province traded penalties to get the score to 17-6 after 20 min. With the Sharks starting to dominate play they also had more opportunities on attack and it took not long for them to score their first try.

It was a quick take from a penalty that send  u Preez over in the corner for their first try of the match for the Sharks. This made Western Province only a 17-14 lead after 29 min.

With the Sharks keeping the pressure on Western Province they got penalty after penalty to firstly get level on the scoreboard and then just before halftime took the lead  20-17.

Sharks fullback Bosch had another brilliant first half and kicked everything from almost anywhere on the field. His tactical kicking was again first class and also did his bit on attack.

The Second half was all WP as they scored a brilliant try from yet another cross kick from Du Preez to take the lead. It was Viljoen at the end of that kick to score in the corner.

Thing did not improved for the Sharks as they then got a yellow card for a dangerous tackle and started to give a few penalties away to give Western Province forward momentum.

With the time starting to run out both teams tried to run the ball and some big hits stopping both teams on attack. Western Province then got a massive drive away from a line out and scored another brilliant try in the corner to take the score to 27-20 after 60 min.

At this stage the Sharks had almost no ball and was making mistakes on attack that gave Western Province more opportunities with their dangerous backline.

The last 20 min was exciting from both sides trying to get on top of the scoreboard and game. It was Western Province who again scored with 10 minutes to go through yet another great kick for Viljoen from the boot of Du Preez to take the score to 34-20.

The Sharks did come back with a try but it was a little too late as the game ended with a win for Western Province 34-27.

It was a great bonus point win for Western Province and they will take much heart from this win to take to next week massive clash against the Golden Lions in Johannesburg.

Robert du Preez was a worthy man of the match with a brilliant display of fly half rugby today when his team needed it most

The scorers: 

For Western Province:
Tries: Kotze, Kok, Viljoen 2, Van Dyk
Cons: Du Preez
Pens: Du Preez 2

For the Sharks:
Tries: Du Preez, Smith
Cons: Bosch
Pens: Bosch 5
Yellow card: Du Preez

Blue Bulls too good for Golden Lions at Loftus

11

It was seen as one of the games of the weekend as the Blue Bulls hosted the Golden Lions at Loftus.

Bulls win

The game struggled to get going with both teams struggle to get any forward momentum and making too many handling errors. In ten minutes we had more scrums than what we seen in most eighty minute games.

The scrums were a struggle from the start with both teams giving away penalties and free kicks.

The Blue Bulls got into an early lead with two penalties from the boot of Schoeman.

The Lions did get one back when Boshoff got his first penalty over to take the lead down by three points.

It was the Golden Lions that scored first from a great string run from Rohan Janse van Rensburg. It also gave the Lions the lead but the Blue Bulls hit straight back with an intercept try to again lead the Blue Bulls with 16-10 after 32 min.

It seems that sparked both teams to star playing some great running rugby and giving the small crowd something to cheer about.

The end of the half was all the Lions as they attack well past the hooter to get that try and go in the lead at half time but the Blue Bulls defense was brilliant to keep them out.

The Blue Bulls took the lead 16-10 at half time and all to play for in the second half.

The second half the Lions started the better of the two teams but again the Blue Bulls defense was again up to anything the Lions thrown at them.

They were also getting better momentum on attack and score their second try from a great lineout move to extend their lead to 21-10 after 50 min.

It seems that the Blue Bulls was much better in the contact situations and hitting the rucks much harder that the Lions forwards.

It was Kwagga Smith that got the Lions in back in the game with a great try to get them again within 4 points of the Blue Bulls.

This did not last long as the Blue Bulls again had a great scrum and force a penalty to make it again a seven-point lead with 16 min to play.

The Blue Bulls defense seemed to have been doing enough to win the game as they just kept on hitting the Lions back on attack and getting turnovers as easy as ice cream on a Sunday.

The Blue Bulls got another try through a great break from Travis Ismaiel and with that sealed the game.

The Lions kept on making mistakes on attack losing the ball in contact and just could not get momentum.

This was one of the better wins for the Blue Bulls beating the Lions in defense and with some brilliant defense.

Scorers:

Blue Bulls – Tries: Travis Ismaiel, Marvin Orie, Joshua Stander. Conversions: Tian Schoeman (2). Penalties: Schoeman (4).
Golden Lions – Tries: Howard Mnisi, Kwagga Smith. Conversions: Marnitz Boshoff (2). Penalty: Boshoff.

Man of the Match Pierre Schoeman

man bulls

 

Match Preview – Blue Bulls v Golden Lions

6

The Blue Bulls host the Golden Lions on Friday night in Pretoria better known as the Jukskei Derby and it could be one of the matches of the season.

Blue Bulls v Golden Lions

With the Blue Bulls busy building a formidable team of youngster in Pretoria the Golden Lions are welcoming back some star players for the Loftus clash on Friday. The biggest of them all is the return of Rohan Janse van Rensburg who will take his place yet again in the Lions midfield.

The Lions team also sees Kwagga Smith back who will add some extra spark for the forwards after recently winning a bronze medal in Rio with the Springbok Sevens team.

Blue Bulls coach Nollis Marais is confident the aura of Loftus will give his side the edge. “We are back at Loftus Versfeld, so have no excuses,” said Marais. “We play our best rugby here and enjoy massive support. The Golden Lions fans will remind us that we lost here last time we played and that is a good dose of reality. We have not been at our best and still need to play for this season. “This is an ideal opportunity to do it against the defending champions. We could not ask for a bigger challenge.”

The Blue Bulls was forced to make some changes with Pierre Schoeman that will start in the number one jersey  ahead of Lizo Gqoboka. Hanro Liebenberg starts at eight for the injured Jannes Kirsten and Arno Botha moves to blindside flank with Roelof Smit that will provide loose-forward cover from the reserves.

In the Super Rugby match at Loftus earlier this year the Lions put fifty points past the men from Pretoria and they will not want a repeat of that day comes Friday night.

The Golden Lions went to a solid 38-17 win over the Blue Bulls in the same match last year and they are on a high after last week win at home. The Blue Bulls although not at all bad were beaten by the Sharks last weekend in Durban.

As we have said all along this season with one round of matches you cannot afford to lose too many and especially at home if you want to be their at semi-finals time. The Blue Bulls have now lost already two matches this year and cannot really afford another slip-up.

Prediction: Lions will be too good for Blue Bulls with at least 10 points.

Blue Bulls: 15 Duncan Matthews, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Dries Swanepoel, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Jamba Ulengo, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Piet van Zyl, 8 Hanro Liebenberg, 7 Arno Botha (c), 6 Ruan Steenkamp, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 RG Snyman, 3 Jacobie Adriaanse, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Pierre Schoeman
Replacements: 16 Bandise Maku, 17 Martin Dreyer, 18 Nic de Jager, 19 Roelof Smit, 20 Andre Warner, 21 Joshua Stander, 22 Ulrich Beyers

Golden Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Courtnall Skosan, 13 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 12 Howard Mnisi, 11 Anthony Volmink, 10 Marnitz Boshoff, 9 Ross Cronje (c), 8 Ruan Ackermann, 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Kwagga Smith, 5 Lourens Erasmus, 4 Martin Muller, 3 Jacques van Rooyen, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Dylan Smith
Replacements: 16 Armand van der Merwe, 17 Corné Fourie, 18 Victor Sekekete, 19 Fabian Booysen, 20 Dillon Smit, 21 Jaco van der Walt, 22 Jacques Nel

PosTeamPWLBPPts
1118100
2108200
332000
411000
522000
696100
7136700
8114500
922000
1043100

 

Kwagga to play more 15-man rugby…

13

Kwagga Smith or rather Albertus Stephanus “Kwagga” Smith is set to play less sevens rugby and more of the fifteen man code this coming season.

Kwagga_Smith_Richard_Huggard_Gallo_Images

Kwagga, one of the sevens stars of South Africa these last couple of years wants to concentrate now more on getting a place in the Lions Super Rugby team from next year on. Smith will only be available for four tournaments in next year World Sevens Series which will see him more in the Lions colors when Super Rugby starts again.

According to Smith contract, he must be available for 15-man rugby at the Lions. Smith has already joined up with his union and if he plays well in the Currie Cup he could be one of the important players in next years Lions campaign.

With Smith’s decision to put a greater focus on 15-man rugby would give him a better chance of knocking on the Springbok door.Winger Seabelo Senatla has a similar arrangement with the Stormers whereby he will also just be available for four tournaments during the World Sevens series, reports Netwerk24.

We have already seen Kok playing for Western Province this past weekend and I was always under the believe these sevens stars can add quality, skill and that desire to the 15-man code.

Rohan back for Golden Lions clash against Blue Bulls

11

Lions coach Johan Ackermann are not going to take any changes when facing the Blue Bulls at Loftus this weekend as he brought back some of his big guns for the important Currie Cup clash.

Rohan_Janse_van_Rensburg50

One of these players is Rohan Janse van Rensburg who many believe to actually have to be in the current Springbok group.

With Janse van Rensburg Ackermann also picked Skosan and Cronje to start for his team replacing Nel, Gavor and Smith.

All in all Ackermann made nine changes to his team with a number of rotational changes to the pack, Dylan Smith, Robbie Coetzee and Jacques van Rooyen come in as the new front row. Lourens Erasmus is back in the second row, with Ruan Ackermann shifting to No 8 ahead of Ruaan Lerm. Kwagga Smith and Cyle Brink are preferred to Victor Sekekete and Steph de Wit on the flanks.

 Lions team to face the Blue Bulls…

Golden Lions – 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Courtnall Skosan, 13 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 12 Howard Mnisi, 11 Anthony Volmink, 9 Ross Cronjé (c), 8 Ruan Ackermann, 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Kwagga Smith, 5 Lourens Erasmus, 4 Martin Muller, 3 Jacques van Rooyen, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Dylan Smith.
Subs: 16 Akker van der Merwe, 17 Corné Fourie, 18 Victor Sekekete, 19 Fabian Booysen, 20 Dillon Smit, 21 Jaco van der Walt, 22 Jacques Nel.

Currie Cup Wrap – Golden Lions,WP and Griquas gets bonus point wins

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            Get the weekends results and match report 

CC2016 Bigger

The Golden Lions got back to winning ways on Friday as Griquas secured their second win in this years Currie Cup. Here is a recap of the Friday night matches which was played in Johannesburg and Nelspruit.

Friday 26 August 2016

Lions win

The Golden Lions came good again on Friday when they scored a 60-12 victory overt he Boland Kavaliers after the lost last weekend against Griquas.

It was a nine-try festival at Emirates Airline Park on Friday with the Golden Lions again show their skill and ability to score from almost any place on the field. Boland never gave up and did score two tries of themselves but at the end the Golden Lions was just too strong for Boland.

It was not a runaway in the first half but mostly due to mistakes from the Lions. The win was never in doubt as this Lions team just proofs why they are so highly rated in South African rugby these days.

The power and speed of the Lions set the tone for most there attack with strong performance from their forwards that gave them the foundation to attack from. With the win the Lions moved up to third on the log with 13 points.

Boland is sitting in sixth place with five points after  four games.

The scorers:

For Golden Lions:
Tries: Gavor 2, Volmink, Smit, Nel, Sekekete, Mnisi, Bell, Smith
Cons: Boshoff 6
Pen: Boshoff
Yellow card: De Wee (69 min – ruck offence)

For Boland:
Tries: Horn, Wilschut
Con: Kotze
Yellow card: Lewis (70 min – high tackle)

Griquas win

Griquas kept their winning record of the past few years against the Pumas when they got a win in Nelspruit over the Pumas with 41-35 on Friday night.

It was Clinton Swart that scored 21 points to give the men from Kimberley their second win of the season after beating the Golden Lions last weekend in Kimberley. Griquas led the Pumas at the break wih 23-18 and had to work hard to secure a humdinger of a match.

Griquas needed this win to stay not just in the race for the play-offs but also to show that last weeks result was not a lucky win against the Golden Lions. The Pumas is still without a win and was desperate to get that win but was just not their night.

It was an exciting match with five tries being scored and the scoreboard being exchange a few times before the end of the game.

It was a great match for Swart and his role in this win was very important for Griquas and did received a well deserved man of the match for his contribution. He was brilliant in his decision making and kept the scoreboard also ticking over when it was needed.

Scrumhalf Rudi van Rooyen was also a player that stood out for Griquas.

The Pumas played well and could have easily came out winners but mistakes kept that from happening with at times one could see the improvement in this Pumas team expecially on attack.

Sometimes one can question the defense of both teams but we must complement the players and coaches trying to play a more improved attacking game even when the conditions did not sometimes allowed it.

Griquas will be very happy with the win and the Pumas will want to get back at it next week and get that first win when they take on Boland.

Scorers

Pumas

Tries: JP Lewis, Jannie Stander, Emile Temperman, Frankie Herne; Conversions: Francois Brummer (3); Penalties: Brummer (3).

Griquas

Tries: Rudi van Rooyen (2), Alshaun Bock, Wendal Wehr; Conversions: Clinton Swart (3); Penalties: Swart (5).

Saturday 27 August

wp win

In what was a must win game for Western Province they EP Kings started better of the two teams. The EP Kings got also the first points on the board with a penalty.

WP did show their hand and run from almost every time they got the opportunity but through some good defense and mistakes from WP did not make any progress.

They were the first team to cross the line for a try when Zas got through the Kings defense and it was the spark for WP to start playing with more attacking mindset.

Zas Jones went over the line again but Zas stepped on the line in the play leading up to Jones try which led to a lineout for the Kings.

WP speed in the backline kept attacking the space that the Kings gave them and it did not take them long to send Jones over to get his first try and WP second.

Werner Kok also went over for a try just to let it disallowed due to a forward pass. That was now 14 points left on the field within 30 min for WP in the game.

The rest of the first half can almost be describe as missed opportunities for WP as they had all the ball but just made too many mistakes on attack and their handling was shocking.

WP did get over the whitewash one more time after a powerful scrum and Notshe going over for their third try of the match.

They went into the change rooms with a lead of 17-6 over the EP Kings in PE.

The second half started much the same as the first with both teams showing opportunities but mistakes just kept coming into their play.

WP was still the dominant side on the park and a quick tap from Vermaak gave them their much needed bonus point try.

The EP Kings had enough changes in the game but just could not hold the ball for long periods of time on attack and when they did get it right they made too many mistakes.

With a few minutes to go WP suddenly starting to find the space and scored two tries through Jones who brought his tally to three tries in the match.

At the end it was enough to get full points for DHL WP in PE as they won 36-6

Scorers

EP Kings
Pens: Marais 2

Western Province
Tries: Zas, Jones 3, Notshe, Vermaak
Cons: Thomson 3

sharks win

It was the Blue Bulls that scored first with a beautiful move that send Ulengo over for the first try and took the lead 7-0 after 10 min.

Both teams started the game with intend to run the ball and make sure that they force their attacking play on each other. The Blue Bulls looked just the calmer side in that first 15 minutes and looked good with ball in hand and on defense.

The Blue Bulls seemed to kick allot but it was working for them as they put enough pressure on these kicks.

The Sharks started to find their feet and played with better forward ball forcing a penalty which Bosch kicked over making the score 7-3 after 20 min.

The Blue Bulls kicked another penalty over to take the lead to 10-3 and kept pressure on Sharks attacks. The mistakes also started creeping in for bot side and handling started to be a problem.

The Sharks came back strong after the Blue Bulls received a yellow card for a tip tackle with a try from Botha and a drop on the stroke of half time by Bosch to take the lead 16-10 at half time.

The second half saw both teams again kick allot and it was the Sharks that made the first mistakes to give the Blue Bulls an opportunity but with great defense hold them out.

The Sharks started dominating the game and it was Bosch that went over the corner to give the Sharks a commanding lead. By this time Bosch had done it all in the match, drop, place and score.

The Blue Bulls kept in touch with the Sharks through penalties and after 62 minutes the Sharks lead was only 23-16. The Blue Bulls did show more on attack at this stage of the game and crept back with more penalties.

With 13 minutes to go the Sharks lead was only 23-19.

The Sharks got another penalty to get to a 26-19 lead and that was the end score for the match.

Scorers

Sharks
Tries: Botha, Bosch
Cons: Bosch 2
Pens: Bosch 3
Drop goal: Bosch

Blue Bulls
Try: Ulengo
Con: Schoeman
Pens: Schoeman 4

Currie Cup Preview – Make or break for some teams

1

The Currie Cup moves into week 4 and it is a case of some teams that need to start winning, some that want to keep on winning and other teams that just want to use this opportunity to build and grow as a union.

 

CC 2

 

 

 

With a clear difference between the leaders and the one’s that are left behind at this stage, each and every week have become a play-off match especially for a team like Western Province who has lost both their matches so far the season sitting with only two log points.

It will be the Sharks who will want to secure their fourth win and stay at the top of the log, the Lions will want to get back to winning ways after their loss against Griquas last week, Western Province will want to start winning and Griquas will want to keep that winning feeling they got against the Lions last week.

We have four matches this week and two that stands out, one Friday evening between the Pumas and Griquas and the other Saturday evening between the Sharks and Blue Bulls. These two matches should be very entertaining and we will see the best the Currie Cup can offer.

In the other two matches we have on Friday late afternoon the Lions that host the Boland Kavaliers in Johannesburg and on Saturday afternoon the EP Kings that will welcome their neighbors Western Province to PE.

Here is the current log standings:

PosTeamPWLDBPPts
11181200
21082000
3320100
4110000
5220000
6961200
71367000
81145200
9220000
10431000

Here is a quick preview on this weekend Currie Cup matches

Friday 26 August 2016

Golden Lions v Boland Kavaliers 

Lions v Boland

Although it is not close to the same Golden Lions side that played in the Currie Cup Qualifying rounds, Boland will draw some confidence from the win they had over the Lions in that competition.

What Boland will be assured off is that this Lions side will not be happy bunch of players who lost for the first time since 2004 a Currie Cup match last weekend against Griquas in Kimberley. The players and coaches do not take losses very well and one can expect that the Lions will come out firing from the start of the match to make the wrongs right again.

Ackermann has made a wholesale of changes to his side and sending a clear message to some players to be on par if they want to stay in this team. The Boland Kavaliers are coming off a big loss against the Sharks at home where they were defeated 41-20 in Wellington. Boland have showed they can win away when after they beat the Kings with a bonus-point in Port Elizabeth earlier on in the competition.

The Lions currently sit at fourth on the table but are well behind the Cheetahs and Sharks but the Pride of Jozi do have a game in hand. If they win this game with a bonus point it will send into the top three just behind the table leaders.

If Boland win they will leap-frog the Lions and go into fourth place on the overall table.

Teams:

Golden Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Selom Gavor, 13 Jacques Nel, 12 Howard Mnisi (c), 11 Anthony Volmink, 10 Marnitz Boshoff, 9 Dillon Smit, 8 Ruaan Lerm, 7 Victor Sekekete, 6 Steph de Wit, 5 Martin Muller, 4 Ruan Ackermann, 3 Pieter Scholtz, 2 Ramone Samuels, 1 Corne Fourie

Replacements: 16 Robbie Coetzee, 17 Dylan Smith, 18 Bobby de Wee, 19 Cyle Brink, 20 Ross Cronje, 21 Koch Marx, 22 JW Bell

Boland: 15 Adriaan Carelse, 14 Sergio Torrens, 13 Christopher Bosch, 12 Ryan Nel (c), 11 Danwel Demas, 10 Theuns Kotze, 9 Gerhard Jordaan, 8 Wayne Wilschut, 7 Shaun McDonald, 6 Shaun Adendorff, 5 Joubert Horn, 4 Hanno Kitshoff, 3 Basil Short, 2 Francois Esterhuizen, 1 Francois Hanekom,

Replacements: 16 Clemen Lewis, 17 Enoch Mnyaka, 18 SP Wessels, 19 Ockie van Zyl, 20 Kenan Cronje, 21 Marnus Hugo, 22 Gerrit van Wyk

 

Steval Pumas v Griquas

Pumas v Griquas

One of my matches for the weekend is the match-up between the so-called minnows of South African rugby, the Pumas and Griquas who will head to Mbombela stadium to take each other on, on Friday.

The Pumas will be desperate for a win after losing both their opening matches this far and need to win to stay in the race for that semi-final spots. With both teams desperate for a win and the history between the two sides one do expect a classic game come Friday night in Nelspruit. The history between the two sides will show that the Pumas have not won against Griquas in the last four matches they played. In fact Griquas have scored over 30 points in each of the last three matches these two played against each other.

The biggest factor must be the the confidence Griquas will come with into this game after beating the defending champions, The Golden Lions last week. After a disappointing start against the Sharks in their first game the men from Kimberley showed us just how good a team they have this year again. this win was also a sound warning to the Currie Cup’s other heavyweights and showed that their performance in the tournament’s qualifiers was no fluke.

With the Pumas having had a bye last week they do come of two heavy defeats first against the Sharks in week 1 and then the Golden Lions beating them 68-24 in Round two. With this in mind most properly the coach Mentz has rung in some changes to his starting line-up with Namibia international number eight Renaldo Bothma takes over the captaincy from Hugo Kloppers who has been replaced in the run-on side by Jannie Stander.

Other changes to the pack, Frank Herne takes over from Francois du Toit at hooker while De-Jay Terblanche comes in for Kwezi Mona at loosehead prop.

Griquas loosehead prop Steph Roberts will break the record for most appearances for the Kimberley-based union on Saturday. Roberts is set to play his 162nd match for Griquas.

The 31-year-old wants his team to build on their victory over the Golden Lions.

The win doesn’t make us the best team in the competition,” he told the MyPlayers website. “Just like the loss against the Sharks doesn’t mean we’re the worst team in the competition.”

Teams:

Pumas – 15 Devon Williams, 14 Bernardo Botha, 13 Hennie Skorbinski, 12 Leighton van Wyk, 11 Jean-Paul Lewis, 10 Francois Brummer, 9 Emile Temperman, 8 Renaldo Bothma (c), 7 Nardus van der Walt, 6 Marnus Schoeman, 5 Jannie Stander, 4 Wiehan Hay, 3 Louis Albertse, 2 Frank Herne, 1 De Jay Terblanche.

Replacements: 16 Simon Westraadt, 17 Jacques Kotze, 18 Hugo Kloppers, 19 Carel Greeff, 20 Kevin Luiters, 21 Marlou van Niekerk, 22 Hoffmann Maritz.

Griquas – 15 AJ Coertzen (c), 14 JW Jonker, 13 Johnathan Francke, 12 Clinton Swart, 11 Alshaun Bock, 10 Elgar Watts, 9 Rudi van Rooyen, 8 Jason Fraser, 7 Sias Koen, 6 Wendal Wehr, 5 Jonathan Janse van Rensburg, 4 Mzwanele Zito, 3 Stephan Kotze, 2 AJ le Roux, 1 Steph Roberts.

Replacements: 16 Marius Fourie, 17 Liam Hendricks, 18 Hilton Lobberts, 19 Steve Meiring, 20 Renier Botha, 21 André Swarts, 22 Eric Zana.

Saturday 27 August

EP Kings v Western Province

Kings v WP

 

On Saturday we have great rugby to look forward to with first the Rugby Championship test from New Zealand then two Currie Cup matches and then later the Springboks.

With Western Province losing their first two opening matches a huge amount of pressure has been put on this young team to win and win big in PE when they face an surprisingly good EP Kings side who showed some great abilities against the Blue Bulls at Loftus last week.  Western Province have been struggling to put a full eighty minutes together yet this season and need this win desperately to stay in the race.

Things are not looking very good for the the union as a couple of players have also in the week announced that they are leaving the union. Western Province will not be able to afford another loss and need to secure a bonus point which will not be easy from what this new look Kings side showed us at Loftus last week.

For the EP Kings it will be a case of keep doing what they did last week and improve every week as they are in a re-building phase at the struggling union. The Kings have made four changes to the team that lost at Loftus last week with JC Greyling, who hails from Namibia, starts at outside centre and Burton Klaasen moving to inside centre, after Waylon Murray was given a rest.

Ettiene Oosthuizen comes up from the bench to flank, while Sebastian Ferreira moves from flank to Lock to replace David Antonites, who has been ruled out after scans earlier this week revealed he had fractured his hand during the game against the Bulls

Teams:

EP Kings

15. Johann Tromp, 14. Siviwe Soyizwapi, 13. JC Greyling, 12. Burton Klaasen, 11. Sampie Mastriet, 10. Kobus Marais, 9 .Ricky Schroeder (captain), 8. Christiaan De Bruin, 7. Etienne Oosthuizen, 6. Vince Jobo, 5. Sebastian Ferreira, 4. Tazz Fuzani, 3. Vukile Sofisa, 2. Mike Willemse, 1. Justin Forwood

Replacements: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Barend Potgieter, 18 Dylon Pieterse, 19 Luke vd Smit, 20 Brandon Brown, 21 Lungelo Goza, 22 Ganfried May

Western Province

DHL Western Province: 15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Werner Kok, 13 Huw Jones, 12 Dan du Plessis, 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Brandon Thomson, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Jurie van Vuuren, 6 Kobus van Dyk, 5 Chris van Zyl (captain), 4 JD Schickerling, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.

Replacements: 16 Neil Rautenbach, 17 Alistair Vermaak, 18 Oli Kebble, 19 Jan de Klerk, 20 Stefan Willemse, 21 Godlen Masimla, 22 Robert du Preez.

Sharks v Blue Bulls

Sharks v Blue Bulls

 

The final Currie Cup match of the weekend sees the Cell C Sharks hosting the Vodacom Blue Bulls in Durban which should be the game of the weekend.

The Sharks have been riding high in this years Currie Cup winning all three their opening matches and sitting nicely with fifteen log points on top of the log. The Blue Bulls on the other hand had a great start with full points in week 1 against Western Province but then cane back with a humiliating defeat against Free State in Bloemfontein. Last week against the EP Kings was also not what the doctor ordered and they will have to be on par to take on a good Sharks outfit on Saturday night.

Injuries have also not helped the Blue Bulls in the past few weeks but somehow they have to sort out their defense as they are letting teams to easily to score tries against them.

The Sharks have been the inform team this far the season and they team are looking like a Championship team. The most impressive part of the Sharks team this year so far was the type of game they play and the accuracy of what they do on the field. They looked like a much better all-round team from the one dimensional team we saw in Super Rugby.

Getting three bonus points on the way of winning their first three matches shows the ability the team have in scoring tries and putting pressure on the other team.

Teams:

Sharks – 15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Odwa Ndungane, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 André Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Inny Radebe, 9 Stefan Ungerer, 8 Philip van der Walt, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Keegan Daniel, 5 Ruan Botha, 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Franco Marais, 1 Dale Chadwick.
Replacements: 16 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 17 John-Hubert Meyer, 18 JC Astle, 19 Jean Deysel, 20 Hanco Venter, 21 S’bura Sithole, 22 Rhyno Smith.

Blue Bulls: 15 Duncan Matthews, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Dries Swanepoel, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Jamba Ulengo, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Piet van Zyl, 8 Arno Botha (c), 7 Jannes Kirsten, 6 Ruan Steenkamp, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 RG Snyman, 3 Jacobie Adriaanse, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Lizo Gqoboka
Replacements: 16 Bandise Maku, 17 Martin Dreyer, 18 Nic de Jager, 19 Hanro Liebenberg, 20 Andre Warner, 21 Joshua Stander, 22 Ulrich Beyers

Currie Cup First Division:

The Down Touch Griffons and Leopards will meet in Potchefstroom in what could be an epic clash as both teams attempt to extend their unbeaten runs to three matches. The Leopards may have had a higher success rate in meetings between the sides in the last two seasons, but the Down Touch Griffons were emphatic 76-26 victors in the Currie Cup Qualifiers, which will bolster their confidence going into the clash. In their last two matches in Potchefstroom, however, the Leopards won 64-34 and 70-25 respectively.

The match between Border and the Windhoek Draught Welwitschias will mark only the second time the teams meet. Their first meeting was in the Currie Cup Qualifiers earlier this year in which the East London side registered a 76-18 victory in Windhoek. Interestingly the Namibian side has scored eight tries in their first two matches to only four by Border, but their defence has let them down as they have conceded 16 tries, which is four times that which the East London side has leaked. Should they succeed at improving their defence, the clash could be tight.

The battle between the Hino Valke and SWD is expected to be gripping given the tight battles between the sides in the last three seasons. The Valke won four of their last six matches, with three of those victories being by five points or less. Adding to this, both teams come off defeats, which is expected to motivate them significantly.

Currie Cup Premier Division fixtures:

 Friday, 26 August

 Xerox Golden Lions vs Boland

Venue: Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg

Kick-off: 17h00

Referee: Rasta Rasivhenge

TV: SS1

Steval Pumas vs Griquas

Venue: Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit

Kick-off: 19h10

Referee: Stuart Berry

TV: SS1

Saturday, 27 August

 EP Kings vs DHL Western Province

Venue: Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth

Kick-off: 16h00

Referee: Pro Legoete

TV: SS1

Cell C Sharks vs Vodacom Blue Bulls

Venue: Growthpoint Kings Park, Durban

Kick-off: 18h10

Referee: Marius van der Westhuizen

TV: SS1

Currie Cup First Division

 Friday, 26 August

Leopards vs Down Touch Griffons

Venue: Profert Olën Park, Potchefstroom

Kick-off: 17h00

Referee: Rodney Boneparte

Border vs Windhoek Draught Welwitschias

Venue: BCM Stadium, East London

Kick-off: 19h00

Referee: Egon Seconds

Saturday, 27 August

 Hino Valke vs SWD

Venue: Barnard Stadium, Kempton Park

Kick-off: 15h00

Referee: Mpho Matsaung

Wholesale changes for Golden Lions to take on Boland

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Golden Lions coach have made changes to his team that went down to Griquas last week as they host the Boland Kavaliers on Friday in Johannesburg.

Golden Lions

Injured Mahuza will be replaced by Andries Coetzee with Gavor also replacing Skosan at right wing. Hanekom makes way for Nel in the midfield and Boshoff get a start at ten inplace of van der Walt. Captain Cronje also move to the bench for Dilan Smit

In the forwards, Ackermann to lock raplacing Lusaseni and Lerm takes Ackermann number eight jumper for the match. Brink also move to the bench with Sekekete replacing him in the starting fifteen. Muller replace Erasmus at five and they will also have a new front row in Scholtz, Fourie and Samuels.

The Lions have won one match out of the two they played and will want to make sure they get back to winning ways against Boland.

Team:

Xerox Golden Lions:

  1. Corné Fourie
  2. Ramone Samuels
  3. Pieter Scholtz
  4. Ruan Ackermann
  5. Martin Muller
  6. Steph de Wit
  7. Victor Sekekete
  8. Ruaan Lerm
  9. Dillon Smit
  10. Marnitz Boshoff
  11. Antony Volmink
  12. Howard Mnisi ©
  13. Jacques Nel
  14. Selom Gavor
  15. Andries Coetzee

Replacements:

  1. Robbie Coetzee
  2. Dylan Smith
  3. Bobby de Wee
  4. Cyle Brink
  5. Ross Cronje
  6. Kock Marx
  7. JW Bell

The Full Days program:

12:00              Gates open

12:30              Xerox Golden Lions U/19 vs. WP U/19

14:30              Xerox Golden Lions U/21 vs. WP U/21

17:00              Xerox Golden Lions vs Boland Cavaliers

 

Golden Lions side named for Namibia trip

0

Logo_Golden_Lions_Rugby.svg

The Xerox Golden Lions have made a few changes to their side that will travel to Namibia to take on the Welwitschias on Saturday with the veteran Derick Minnie getting his first start.

Minnie replaces Robert Kruger while MB Lusaseni has also been included together wih Justin Ackerman.

“We not only disappointed our fans we disappointed ourselves when we lost against Border last weekend. We have to rectify it and that is why the bulk of the players will get another opportunity this weekend.

“It is good to have senior journeymen like Derick and MB back in the side as they bring a maturity to the side that is very important,” said coach Bafana Nhleko.

Among the backs JW Bell starts in his first official game for the Lions and Ricky Schroeder replaces Dillon Smit at scrumhalf who is out due to injury.

New faces on the bench include Bobby de Wee, Victor Sekekete and Ashlon Davids.

Team Sheet

  1. Justin Ackerman
  2. Ramone Samuels
  3. Jacques Van Rooyen
  4. MB Lusaseni
  5. Martin Muller
  6. Stephan De Wit
  7. Derick Minnie
  8. Ruaan Lerm
  9. Ricky Schroeder
  10. Marnitz Boshoff
  11. Selom Gavor
  12. Jarryd Sage
  13. Jacques Nel
  14. Koch Marx
  15. JW Bell

Replacement:

  1. Pieter Jansen
  2. Pieter Scholtz
  3. Bobby De Wee
  4. Victor Sekekete
  5. Ashlon Davids
  6. Shaun Reynolds
  7. Anthony Volmink

Who was that Cyle Brink?

10

Position Flanker

Date of Birth 16/01/1994 (22 years)

Place of Birth Johannesburg, RSA

Height: 190cm

Weight: 118kg

 

_WHL8781
Credit: Willem Loock Photography

A lot of fans were wondering who he was. Some Lions fans looked so disappointed in the injury to Jaco Kriel they felt the side would drop off in standards just a bit. How wrong they were. The flanker came on and was like a possessed man. He was mammoth in all facets from carrying the ball to smashing the Cheetahs behind the gain line.

Some fans in the stadium who read the reports in the media this week could not believe his impact. Some even suggesting amongst themselves he was out to prove a point after the Ruan Ackermann stories.

I just saw a future star who got a chance and was eager to prove he can cut it at the highest level. He excelled in all areas. He was by miles the best loose forward in South Africa this weekend. Setting such a standard only means he will be expected to live up to it.

Brink played like it was his last game, yet it was his chance in Super rugby and in so many ways the missing Jaco Kriel was not missed. He poses more problems for Johan Ackermann who will have more loose forward selection issues when his array of stars return.

A wealth of choice in Ruan Ackermann, Derrick Minnie, Warwick Tecklenburg, Cyle Brink, Stephan de Wit, Fabian Booysen and the list goes on. Cyle Brink was one of the stand-out performers at the 2014 Junior World Championships in New Zealand, representing the Junior Springboks who returned home with a silver medal.

He represented the Lions at the 2012 Craven week and has continued to develop. What we have here, is yet another ex-King Edwards School boy; is on the verge of a glittering career.

Whiteley’s late withdraw gives Mnisi the captains armband…

1

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Centre Howard Mnisi will captain the Golden Lions in their Currie Cup clash against the EP Kings at Ellis Park on Saturday.

This comes after No 8 Warren Whiteley was withdrawn from the team after straining a calf muscle at training on Thursday.

Whiteley, who returned to the Lions this week after failing to make the final 31-man Springbok Rugby World Cup squad, was initially named as captain but withdrawn shortly after suffering the injury.

Fabian Booysen shifts to No 8, while Kwagga Smith moves into the starting line-up at No 7, with Jano Venter coming in on the bench.

Xerox Golden Lions head coach Johan Ackermann has named his team to face the Eastern Province Kings at Emirates Airline Park on Saturday.

Ackermann has followed through with his rotation policy, making wholesale changes to the side which downed the Steval Pumas in Nelspruit last weekend.

In the forwards, Malcolm Marx and Julian Redelinghuys will start in the front row. MB Lusaseni is included at lock.

Additionally, there have been five personnel changes to the Xerox Golden Lions backline. Lohan Jacobs will start at scrumhalf, while Jaco van der Walt has been given an opportunity to start at flyhalf.

Anthony Volmink will start at left wing, while Ruan Combrinck shifts to right wing to make space for Andries Coetzee who returns from injury this week at fullback. Additionally, Stokkies Hanekom will start at outside centre.

The match will get under way at 19h10.  Tickets are still available to purchase from just R20 via Lionsrugby.computicket.com.

Teams:

Golden Lions (revised):

15. Andries Coetzee, 14. Ruan Combrinck, 13. Stokkies Hanekom, 12. Howard Mnisi (captain), 11. Anthony Volmink, 10. Jaco van der Walt, 9. Lohan Jacobs, 8. Fabian Booysen, 7. Kwagga Smith, 6. Stephan de Wit, 5. Martin Muller, 4. MB Lusaseni, 3. Julian Redelinghuys, 2. Malcolm Marx, 1. Jacques van Rooyen

Substitutes: 16. Robbie Coetzee, 17. Ruan Dreyer, 18. Lourens Erasmus, 19. Jano Venter, 20. Ricky Schroeder, 21. Marnitz Boshoff, 22. Jacques Nel

Preview: ABSA Currie Cup Week 2

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Picture3

 

It is ABSA Currie Cup week 2 and if last week was anything to go by then we are in for another great weekend of rugby.

Golden Lions vs Pumas (Emirates Airline Park “Live” SS1 at 19:10)

Both teams stated there Currie Cup with wins and will look forward to keep that going when they face-off against each other in Johannesburg on Friday night.

The Lions beat the Kings 51-14 and the Pumas got another win over the Sharks in Nelspruit 33-24. Both sides will be confidant coming into this weeks match.

 

Victory over the Sharks and their triumph in the Vodacom Cup this year, the men from Nelspruit are one of the teams to look out for this year and all teams will take the so-called minnows seriousely this year.

Two players to watch out for will be scrum-half Faf de Klerk and prop Corne Fourie, who both impressed for the Lions during their Super Rugby campaign and Mentz believes the home side will go the extra mile to negate any advantage the duo might have after their stint with the Johannesburg-based side.

Johan Ackermann is a wily coach and I am sure he will make plans to ensure Corne and Faf don’t pick up on their game-plan,” said Mentz.

We’ve seen the type of rugby the Lions can play and we have a fairly good idea of what to expect.”

The Lions showed in their win over the Kings that they will continue with their expansive style of play which helped them to reach last year’s final.

In Ruan Combrinck, Courtnall Skosan, Harold Vorster, Howard Mnisi and Sampie Mastriet they possess dangerous attackers while Marnitz Boshoff is one of the best goal-kickers in the country.

Up front, captain Jaco Kriel is out to prove a point, after missing out on Springbok selection while his back-row partner, Blitzbokke stalwart, Kwagga Smith, will want to continue where he left off against the Kings, after scoring a hat-trick of tries last weekend.

The teams:

Golden Lions: 15 Ruan Combrinck, 14 Courtnall Skosan, 13 Harold Vorster, 12 Howard Mnisi, 11 Sampie Mastriet/Anthony Volmink, 10 Marnitz Boshoff, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Ruaan Lerm, 7 Kwagga Smith, 6 Jaco Kriel (c), 5 Martin Muller, 4 Franco Mostert, 3 Julian Redelinghuys, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Jacques van Rooyen.
Replacements: 16 Robbie Coetzee, 17 Ruan Dreyer, 18 MB Lusaseni, 19 Steph de Wit, 20 Lohan Jacobs, 21 Stokkies Hanekom, 22 Jaco van der Walt.

Pumas: 15 JW Bell, 14 Bernado Botha, 13 Jerome Pretorius, 12 Stefan Watermeyer (captain), 11 Rosco Spekman, 10 JC Roos, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Lambert Groenewald, 7 Uzair Cassiem, 6 Marnus Schoeman, 5 Marius Coetzer, 4 Giant Mtyanda, 3 De-Jay Terblanché, 2 Frank Herne, 1 Khwezi Mona.
Replacements: 16 Francois du Toit, 17 Corne Fourie, 18 Jason-Colin Fraser, 19 Jaco Bouwer, 20 Reynier van Rooyen, 21 Justin van Staden, 22 Hoffmann Maritz

Date: Friday, August 14
Venue: Ellis Park, Johannesburg
Kick-off: 19:10 local (17:10 GMT)
Referee: Stuart Berry
Assistant referees: Ben Crouse, Oregopotse Rametsi
Television match official: Johan Greeff

Blue Bulls vs Griquas (Loftus Versfeld at 19:10)

The Blue Bulls have put down the marker last week with an impressive win over the Free State Cheetahs and surprise most on the way the pt the Cheetahs away.

The Blue Bulls are in a rebuilding phase and what makes most of there supporters excited is the fact that they finally are seeing some initiative rugby from the Bulls and that the young talent that the union have is coming through.

Under the hand of head coach Nollis Marais, the Blue Bulls are again showing the signs of a team that can bring back the supporters to Loftus and it is great not just for the union but for South African rugby as well.

Man of the match, Francois Hougaard will again play a pivot role in getting this young and exciting back line away. One thing that did stand out from teh Blue Bulls last week was there scrums and although not perfect yet, it looks like they are getting there mojo back.

Griquas were on the receiving end of a 43-19 defeat against the defending champions Western Province in Kimberley on Friday and, as that scoreline suggests, they had little to crow after that effort. They will have to step it up if they want to be competitive this year and have any say in making the play-offs.

Their head coach Hawies Fourie has made several changes to his matchday squad for this weekend’s clash.

Amongst the backs, Ruhan Nel shifts from outside centre to right wing where he replaces Ederies Arendse while Johnathan Francke comes in to wear the number 13 jersey.

In the forwards, former Springbok loose forward Hilton Lobberts takes over from Nardus van der Walt on the blindside flank while Stephan Kotze replaces Ewald van der Westhuizen who drops down to the bench.

There’s a strong look to the visitors’ replacements bench which includes experienced players like Martin Bezuidenhout (hooker), Leon Karemaker (back-row) and former Blue Bulls wing Jacquin Jansen.

The teams:

Blue Bulls: 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 William Small-Smith, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Jamba Ulengo, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Hanro Liebenberg, 7 Lappies Labuschagne (c), 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Jacques du Plessis, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Dean Greyling.
Replacements: 16 Bandise Maku, 17 Dayan van der Westhuizen, 18 RG Snyman, 19 Roelof Smit, 20 Ivan van Zyl, 21 Louis Fouche, 22 Dries Swanepoel.

Griquas: 15 Gouws Prinsloo, 14 Ruhan Nel, 13 Johnathan Francke, 12 Michael van der Spuy, 11 Ntabeni Dukisa, 10 Riaan Viljoen, 9 Tian Meyer (c), 8 Carel Greeff, 7 Hilton Lobberts, 6 RJ Liebenberg, 5 Hugo Kloppers, 4 Jonathan Adendorf, 3 Stephan Kotze, 2 AJ le Roux, 1 Danie Mienie.
Replacements: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Ewald van der Westhuizen, 18 Jaco Nepgen, 19 Leon Karemaker, 20 Rudi van Rooyen, 21 Clinton Swart, 22 Jacquin Jansen.

Date: Friday, August 14
Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
Kick-off: 19:10 local (17:10 GMT)
Referee: Quinton Immelman
Assistant Referees: Sindile Ngcese, Archie Sehlako
Assessor: Craig Joubert

Western Province vs Free State Cheetahs (Newlands “Live” on SS1 at 15:00)

Western Province will want to continue were they left off last week in there aim to defend the Currie Cup successfully at the end of the season when they host the Free State Cheetahs at Newlands

 

Although not close to a perfect performance the Western Province team made it look easy to beat the Griquas team in Kimberley last week and they will want to start with a win in there first match in-front of there home crowd on Saturday.

The Cheetahs vs Western Province match is usually an open hing score match as both teams are willing to give the ball air and we expect another great game from these two teams.

Western Province will make a huge mistake if they take anything from the lost the Cheetahs suffered against the Blue Bulls last week and will have to be ready for an onslaught as that loss would have hurt the men from Bloemfontein.

As coaches, especially as a new coaching unit, we know the responsibilities that go with coaching at this union – and coaching at DHL Newlands – and we would love to open our 2015 home campaign on a high,” he added.

The Free State side faltered in their first match in Bloemfontein and new coach, Franco Smith, has made a number of changes to his side in a bid to get the desired result in Cape Town.

New fly-half recruit Fred Zeilinga will make his first start for the visitors as the ex-Shark takes over the number 10 jersey from rookie Niel Marais.

Former Western Force fly-half Sias Ebersohn is back in South Africa and he will provide cover for Zeilinga. The other change in the backline sees AJ Coertzen replace Coenie van Wyk at full-back.

Amongst the forwards, Neil Jordaan will be starting at number eight with Gerhard Olivier now on the bench, while Armandt Koster will start at lock in place of Willem Serfontein and Niel Raubenheimer makes way for Jacques du Toit at hooker.

The last time these teams met, WP won 34-29 in Bloemfontein.

The teams:

Western Province: 15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Dillyn Leyds, 13 Juan de Jongh (c), 12 Jaco Taute, 11 Seabelo Senatla, 10 Demetri Catrakilis, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 6 Rynhardt Elstadt, 5 Ruan Botha, 4 Jean Kleyn, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Oli Kebble.
Replacements: 16 Marius Fourie, 17 Alistair Vermaak, 18 Jan de Klerk, 19 Chris Cloete, 20 Jano Vermaak, 21 Kurt Coleman, 22 Kobus van Wyk

Free State Cheetahs: 15 AJ Coertzen, 14 Clayton Blommetjies, 13 Francois Venter, 12 Rayno Benjamin, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Shaun Venter, 8 Neil Jordaan, 7 Henco Venter, 6 Boom Prinsloo, 5 Francois Uys (c), 4 Armandt Koster, 3 Luan de Bruin, 2 Jacques du Toit, 1 Caylib Oosthuizen.
Replacements: 16 Elandre Huggett, 17 Maks van Dyk, 18 Reniel Hugo, 19 Gerhard Olivier, 20 Zee Mkhabela, 21 Tertius Kruger, 22 Sias Ebersohn

Date: Saturday, August 15
Venue: Newlands Stadium, Cape Town
Kick-off: 15:00 local (13:00 GMT)
Referee: Jaco van Heerden
Assistant Referees: AJ Jacobs, Rodney Boneparte
TMO: Willie Vos

Sharks vs EP Kings (Growthpoint Kings Park “Live” on SS1 at 17:05)

Both teams had the worst start possible last week in losses against the Pumas and Lions respectively.

The Sharks will be desperate to put the wrongs right in-front of a home crowd who had not much to shout about there team this year so far.

Falling behind in the Currie Cup so early in the season will make it hard for any team to catch up and as the teams get better an better as the season progress.

In the final cross-section fixture of the weekend, the Sharks will be desperate to bounce back from their shock loss to the Pumas in Nelspruit in Round one as they host the Kings in Durban. The Sharks came home last week from Nelspruit with no points at all and will want to register a good win this weekend.

Sharks loose forward Jean Deysel (starting) and centre Paul Jordaan (bench) will make a welcome return to the Sharks steam. The pair have been out of action for months due to injury, but their experience will be important as the Durban side go in search of their first victory.

With the Kings one never really knows were the team is at but they are surely no walkover like last weeks score against the Lions suggest.

Despite suffering a heavy loss in their opening match against the Golden Lions, EP Kings coach, Brent Janse van Rensburg showed faith in the players that did duty last week by keeping changes to a minimum. In the only change to his starting XV, Siyanda Grey, who was on the bench last week, comes in for Sylvian Mahuza on the right wing.

The Kings went down 51-14 to the Lions in Port Elizabeth last Saturday but Janse van Rensburg said he did not think it would be appropriate to make wholesale changes at this stage.

We have selected a similar combination because we feel we need to maintain a sense of continuity,” said Janse van Rensburg.

We have brought Siyanda into the team as we believe he has what it takes to curb the type of rugby the Sharks will bring to the game.”

With the scrum being an issue for the Kings last weekend, Janse van Rensburg was happier with the five-two split and felt they could benefit from an extra front row player on the bench.

We have focused on our scrums to make sure we fix what the problems were and we know we have to focus on the scrum as a united effort,” said Janse van Rensburg.

Skipper Luke Watson said his team were looking forward to the opportunity to give an improved performance this week.

The Sharks are a very good side, with a strong set piece and big backs, so it will be a tough match,” said Watson.

The Lions game was a bit of a wake-up call, but we know what areas we have had to work on and hopefully we will come back a bit more polished this week.”

The Kings will be playing in next years Super Rugby and will want to improve quickly in the Currie Cup as they prepare for the Super Rugby.

The teams:

Sharks: 15 Joe Pietersen, 14 Odwa Ndungane, 13 Wandile Mjekevu, 12 Heimar Williams, 11 Andre Esterhuizen, 10 Lionel Cronje, 9 Stefan Ungerer, 8 Philip van der Walt, 7 Daniel du Preez, 6 Jean Deysel, 5 Marco Wentzel (captain), 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Monde Hadebe, 1 Juan Schoeman.
Replacements: 16 Franco Marais, 17 Gerhard Engelbrecht, 18 David McDuling, 19 Francois Kleinhans, 20 Michael Claassens, 21 Paul Jordaan, 22 SP Marais.

EP Kings: 15 Scott van Breda, 14 Siyanda Grey, 13 JP du Plessis, 12 Tim Whitehead, 11 Luther Obi, 10 George Whitehead, 9 Enrico Acker, 8 Tim Agaba, 7 Stefan Willemse, 6 Luke Watson (captain), 5 Cornell Hess, 4 Steven Sykes, 3 Tom Botha, 2 Martin Ferreira, 1 Schalk Ferreira
Replacements: 16 Edgar Marutlulle, 17 Lizo Gqoboka, 18 Simon Kerrod, 19 Thembelani Bholi, 20 Jacques Engelbrecht, 21 Kevin Luiters, 22 Karlo Aspeling

Date: Saturday, August 15
Venue: Kings Park, Durban
Kick-off: 17:10 (15:10 GMT)
Referee: Marius van der Westhuizen
Assistant referees: Cwengile Jadezweni,  Tahla Ntshakaza
TMO: Christie du Preez

 

Lions get big name sponsorships

7

Chinese proposed Brumbies sponsor Huawei and former Force Sponsor Emirates have signed on as Lions SR sponsors

liions

 

Emirates, a global connector of people and their passions, and the Lions, one of South Africa’s top rugby teams, today announced a five-year sponsorship agreement.

The agreement will see Emirates become the title sponsor of the Lions Super Rugby team and have naming rights to the Lions home ground Ellis Park in Johannesburg. The announcement was made at a media conference today by Orhan Abbas, Emirates Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations for Latin America, Southern and Central Africa, and Rudolf Straeuli, the CEO of the Golden Lions Rugby Union.

Starting from 1 January 2015, the Lions will become known as the Emirates Lions, and the familiar “Fly Emirates” logo will adorn the match and training jerseys of the team for the next five years. Ellis Park, will be named Emirates Airline Park. The agreement also includes in-stadia hospitality as well as a number of other marketing rights and activities.

The five-year sponsorship is a unique one, as the norm is three years for most sponsors, allowing Emirates to invest in the Lions for the long term.

The Lions were without a sponsor for the 2014 Super Rugby series but will also announce on Thursday that Chinese mobile phone company Huawei will become a major sponsor of the team as well.

Huawei are well known for their mobile and 3g devices and are one of the fastest growing Chinese companies in the world at the moment.

The team says no shopping sprees however… they’ll be investing in retention of talent and the present players. However CEO Kevin De Klerk has hinted the side may make “strategic” acquisitions of players.

 

 

Ackermann targeted by Japanese

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The Golden Lions may have just finished off a season of renewal but all indications are they will have to fight tooth and nail to keep their coach Johan Ackermann in South Africa after being targeted by a top club in Japan By Brenden Nel – SuperSport

According to the supersport.com website, Ackermann has received a big-money offer from a Japanese club to join them from the end of 2015 after the Rugby World Cup and depending on his current negotiations with the Lions, may well take the bait of heading towards the Far East.

The Lions coach has overseen the team’s comeback from the mire, after missing a season of Vodacom Super Rugby to record their best ever season with seven wins in 2014, and took the team to the final of the Absa Currie Cup with some sparkling play that caught the eye of Bok coach Heyneke Meyer later on in the year.

The mix of rugby played by the Lions encompasses an ability to attack from anywhere, while their players have done wonderfully for a bunch of no-name recruits who nobody gave a chance.

Ackermann is currently negotiating an extension to his contract at the Lions with CEO Rudolf Straeuli and the offer from Japan will place renewed pressure on the Lions to sign their popular coach.

The former Bok lock, who was until recently the oldest Bok when he played his last test at 37, came into the job as assistant to John Mitchell and took over when the former All Black coach fell out with the players and Lions hierarchy.

His agent Gert-Andries van der Merwe confirmed to supersport.com that there was an offer, but was mum on the details.

“I was recently in Japan and we did receive an offer from a top club but that is all I can say. I’m not allowed to reveal which one,” Van der Merwe said on the offer.

While Japanese clubs are known for their big spending on players, Ackermann may become only the second South African coach to the coach there after Gary Gold this season. Gold is finishing his stay with the defending champion Kobe Steelers before returning to South Africa to take over the coaching at the Cell C Sharks.

It is known that Kobe will be looking for a replacement for Gold, but there has been no confirmation that this is the club that has offered Ackermann the position.

Kobe also have former Boks Jaque Fourie and Andries Bekker on their books, both who were also set to move to the Sharks before committing what remains of their careers to the Steelers, thereby negating any chance of either playing in next year’s Rugby World Cup.

Whiteley back to lead Lions

6

Xerox Golden Lions head coach Johan Ackermann has named his team to take on the Toyota Free State Cheetahs at Ellis Park this Saturday.

Lions Logo

In the forwards, Derick Minnie will start at flank and Warren Whiteley has returned from Springbok duty to start at eighthman. He will also captain the side. As a result of these changes, Warwick Tecklenburg and Willie Britz will shift to the bench to provide cover.

Meanwhile, in the backline, Howard Mnisi will get a start at inside centre. Harold Vorster will provide centre cover off the wood.

The match will kick-off at 15h00.

 Team:

15. Marnitz Boshoff

14. Ruan Combrinck

13. Lionel Mapoe

12. Howard Mnisi

11. Courtnall Skosan

10. Jaco van der Walt

9. Ross Cronje

8. Warren Whiteley (c)

7. Derick Minnie

6. Jaco Kriel

5. Franco Mostert

4. Martin Muller

3. Ruan Dreyer

2. Robbie Coetzee

1. Schalk van der Merwe

 Reserves:

16. Armand van der Merwe

17. Jacques van Rooyen

18. Julian Redelinghuys

19. Willie Britz

20. Warwick Tecklenburg

21. Mark Richards

22. Harold Vorster

 

Xerox Lions name their team for Puma clash

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Lions 

Xerox Golden Lions head coach Johan Ackermann has named his 22-man side to front the Steval Pumas at Ellis Park on Friday.

Ackermann has opted for consistency, making just one change to his starting side. In the forwards, Martin Muller will start at lock in place of the injured MB Lusaseni. On the bench, Derick Minnie will return from injury to provide cover. Malcolm Marx will need to pass a fitness test later in the week in order to be included on the wood.

The match will kick-off at 19h10.

The Team:

15. Andries Coetzee

14. Ruan Combrinck

13. Lionel Mapoe (c)

12. Stokkies Hanekom

11. Courtnall Skosan

10. Jaco van der Walt

9. Ricky Schroeder

8. Willie Britz

7. Kwagga Smith

6. Jaco Kriel

5. Franco Mostert

4. Martin Muller

3. Ruan Dreyer

2. Armand van der Merwe

1. Schalk van der Merwe

Replacements:

16. Malcolm Marx/ Willie Wepener

17. Jacques van Rooyen

18. Julian Redelinghuys

19. Derick Minnie

20. Warwick Tecklenburg

21. Mark Richards

22. Howard Mnisi

Lions team to face Blue Bulls

6

ABSA Currie Cup
ABSA Currie Cup

Xerox Golden Lions head coach Johan Ackermann has named his 22-man outfit, which will face the Vodacom Blue Bulls in Pretoria on Saturday.

Following last week’s 41-22 win over the EP Kings, Ackermann has opted largely for consistency in the Xerox Golden Lions backline. Andries Coetzee will provide cover at fullback, while Ruan Combrinck will run out at left wing. Jaco van der Walt returns from injury and will start at flyhalf. In the forwards, Derick Minnie will start at eighthman for this game and will also captain the side. Willie Wepener starts in the hooker berth.

On the bench, Mark Richards could make his Xerox Golden Lions debut should he get a run out.

 

The match will kick off at 19h10.

Team:

15. Andries Coetzee

14. Lionel Mapoe

13. Stokkies Hanekom

12. Alwyn Hollenbach

11. Ruan Combrinck

10. Jaco van der Walt

9. Ross Cronje

8. Derick Minnie

7. Warwick Tecklenburg

6. Jaco Kriel

5. Franco Mostert

4. MB Lusaseni

3. Ruan Dreyer

2. Willie Wepener

1. Schalk van der Merwe

 Reserves:

16. Armand van der Merwe

17. Jacques van Rooyen

18. Martin Muller

19. Willie Britz

20. Kwagga Smith

21. Mark Richards

22. Howard Mnisi

Xerox Lions reshuffle backline for Kings

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re_1275093907

Xerox Golden Lions head coach Johan Ackermann has named his 22-man outfit, which will face the EP Kings in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.

Ackermann has made a few changes to the Xerox Golden Lions backline, following last weekend’s match against DHL Western Province. Ruan Combrinck will start at his preferred position of fullback, Lionel Mapoe will run out at right wing and Stokkies Hanekom reverts to the outside centre berth for this match.

Alwyn Hollenbach returns to action and will start at inside centre, while Andries Coetzee will fill the flyhalf slot.

In the forwards, the Xerox Golden Lions welcome back captain Warren Whiteley at eighthman. Jaco Kriel will also start this match alongside Whiteley in the loose trio. In the front row, Armand van der Merwe will make a start at hooker.

The match will kick off at 19h10.

15. Ruan Combrinck

14. Lionel Mapoe

13. Stokkies Hanekom

12. Alwyn Hollenbach

11. Courtnall Skosan

10. Andries Coetzee

9. Ross Cronje

8. Warren Whiteley (c)

7. Warwick Tecklenburg

6. Jaco Kriel

5. Franco Mostert

4. MB Lusaseni

3. Ruan Dreyer

2. Armand van der Merwe

1. Schalk van der Merwe

16. Robbie Coetzee

17. Jacques van Rooyen

18. Willie Britz

19. Derick Minnie

20. Kwagga Smith

21. Ricky Schroeder

22. Howard Mnisi

Lions running out of flyhalves

2

re_1275093907

Golden Lions had been forced to withdraw flyhalf Jaco van der Walt from his side to face Western Province  on Saturday.

Van der Walt  injured his knee during last weekend’s clash with the Eastern Province Kings at Ellis Park. He was unable to recover in time for Saturday’s match but it is hoped he will return to action next week. Jaco is the Lions second fly half after Boshoff injured his knee in the match against the Blue Bulls a few weeks ago.

Stokkies Hanekom will shift to flyhalf.  Lionel Mapoe moves to outside centre and Courtnall Skosan will start at wing.

“It is unfortunate Jaco cannot play, as it would have been a great learning experience for him to come up against a solid Western Province outfit,” Ackermann said in a statement.

“We are, however, confident in our new selections and are looking forward to our run out in Cape Town.”

The Lions’ depth at flyhalf is wearing thin after first-choice pivot Marnitz Boshoff fractured his right arm in their first-round match against the Blue Bulls.

Teams:

Western Province
15. Cheslin Kolbe, 14. Kobus van Wyk, 13. Juan de Jongh (captain), 12. Michael van der Spuy, 11. Seabelo Senatla, 10. Demetri Catrakilis, 9. Nic Groom, 8. Nizaam Carr, 7. Michael Rhodes, 6. Siya Kolisi, 5. Manuel Carizza, 4. Jean Kleyn, 3. Pat Cilliers, 2. Stephan Coetzee, 1. Alistair Vermaak

Substitutes: 16. Neil Rautenbach, 17. Brok Harris, 18. Ruan Botha, 19. Rynhardt Elstadt, 20. Louis Schreuder, 21. Kurt Coleman, 22. Jaco Taute

Golden Lions
15. Andries Coetzee, 14. Courtnall Skosan, 13. Lionel Mapoe, 12. Harold Vorster, 11. Ruan Combrinck, 10. Stokkies Hanekom, 9. Ross Cronje, 8. Willie Britz, 7. Warwick Tecklenburg, 6. Derick Minnie, 5. Franco Mostert, 4. MB Lusaseni, 3. Ruan Dreyer, 2. Robbie Coetzee, 1. Schalk van der Merwe

Substitutes: 16. Armand van der Merwe, 17. Jacques van Rooyen, 18. Martin Muller, 19. Jaco Kriel, 20. Guy Cronje, 21. Kwagga Smith, 22. Howard Mnisi

Absa Currie Cup Round 2 Previews

3

Its round 2 of the 2014 instalment if the Absa Currie Cup and we give you all the lineups and our thoughts – By Clayton Saville

Xerox Golden Lions
Xerox Golden Lions

Lions to play in Inaugaral jersey

0

The Xerox Golden Lions will run out in navy blue jerseys as they kick-off their Absa Currie Cup campaign against the Vodacom Blue Bulls at Ellis Park on Saturday.

 

XEROX GOLDEN LIONS TO DON INAUGURAL JERSEY ONCE MORE
XEROX GOLDEN LIONS TO DON INAUGURAL JERSEY ONCE MORE

The match, which will mark the Golden Lions Rugby Union’s 125th anniversary, will see the Xerox Golden Lions forgo their standard white jersey with the red strip in order to commemorate this special occasion.

The jersey will be unveiled at a 125-year celebration banquet, to be held at Ellis Park this evening. Guests will include past and present players, staff and administrators as well as supporters and sponsors who have all been involved in building the GLRU legacy.

The navy jersey is known to be the inaugural Transvaal jersey, first officially registered in the 1895 Currie Cup. These were the colours of Diggers Rugby Club at the time. The switch to the white and red jersey was only made in 1933 and these colours have remained ever since. One of the prize items to be auctioned at this evening’s event will include a replica of the inaugural navy jersey, which will include the names of all Golden Lions players who went on to represent the Springboks. The jersey will also list the names of the individuals who represented South Africa prior to 1991, but who were discriminated against due to race.

Xerox, who were the first official Golden Lions sponsors as of 1993, will sponsor the event.  GLRU Chief Executive Officer, Rudolf Straeuli is proud to see the Union host such a significant occasion and wishes to thank Xerox for their continued support. “A special word of thanks must go out to Xerox, who were the Golden Lions’ very first title sponsor when I was still playing for the Union,” said Straeuli.

“Xerox sponsored our team in 1993, when we won the Currie Cup, and we are immensely grateful that they have come on board to work alongside us during this year’s tournament and for this important milestone year.”

Lions

GOLDEN LIONS SPRINGBOK CAPTAINS

F. ASTON                     1896
A. FREW                      1903
D.F.T. MORKEL         1910
F. DU PLESSIS           1949
H.S.V. MULLER         1951-52
A.S. MALAN                1960-65
G.F. MALAN                1963-64
D.J. DE VILLIERS      1970
P.J.F. GREYLING       1972
J.C. BREEDT               1989
J.F. PIENAAR             1993-96
J. ERASMUS               1999
A. VOS                          1999-2001