Benetton came back from behind to beat the Stormers on Saturday in their first round match 22-18. The Stormers led most of the game and had a good lead of 18-7 for most of the second half but went to sleep as Benetton dominated with ball in hand.
Two second half tries did it for the home side at the end but it was by no means a great game from either side. Too many penalties made it a real stop-start affair.
Like the Lions last on Friday, the Stormers had the perfect start when Rikus Pretorius got over for the first try of the match to give them an early lead in the match.
Benetton did started to get in the game with their attacking game but the Stormers defence were able to hang on and keep them out. The Stormers struggled a bit to settle as Benetton got their running game going speeding up the game.
Benetton finally got reward for their efforts when the hooker found plenty of space out wide to run in their first try of the match and the lead of 7-5.
The Stormers got the lead back from Libbok boot when he knocked over a penalty.
Both teams struggled to get momentum in the game as they reseted to playing a kicking game to get in the right areas of the field. It was the Stormers that extend their lead with another Libbok penalty.
The teams went into the break with the visitors leading 11-7 and still everything to play for.
The Stormers started the second half as they did the first this time Ruan Nel getting over for their second try of the match extending their lead to 18-7.
The Stormers defence was really good up to that points getting plenty of turnovers to get out of their own twenty two as Benetton tried to speed up the game.
With Benetton chasing the game they went for a lineout after another penalty in the Stormers twenty two which gave them their second try of the match and reduce the lead to 18-14.
Albornoz made it a one point game when he immediately slotted over a penalty.
Benetton showed some nice ball handling keeping punching away at the Stormers defence and finally got the reward to get Zanon over the line for the lead.
The home side defended well at the end of the game to stop any attempt from the Stormers to steal the match and got the win they wanted at the end.
Benetton: Tries – Gianmarco Lucchesi, Ivan Nemer, Marco Zanon Conversions – Tomas Albornoz(2), Penalties – Tomas Albornoz
Stormers: Tries – Rikus Pretorius, Ruan Nel Conversions – Manie Libbok Penalties – Manie Libbok(2)
UNITED RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP LOG
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