The new Lion King unveiled

Mon, 25 Jun 2012 16:17
Large mitchell   ackermann 630 Large johan ackermann drinks 630

Former Springbok lock Johan Ackermann has been entrusted with the unenviable task of taking over as head coach of the Lions.

Former Springbok lock Johan Ackermann has been entrusted with the unenviable task of taking over as head coach of the Lions.

This website can reveal that the forwards coach has been appointed as caretaker head coach in the place of suspended New Zealander John Mitchell.

As revealed by this website last week Friday, the Golden Lions Rugby Union have suspended Mitchell - following revelations that a group of players have presented a 'list of grievances' to GLRU President Kevin de Klerk over the manner in which Mitchell treated players.

De Klerk initially said that Ackermann and Kiwi Carlos Spencer, the backline mentor, would share the coaching duties.

However, on Monday the Lions boss told the players that Ackermann would be the new 'Lion King' and Spencer would remain in his role as backline coach.

Ackermann, in an exclusive interview with this website, spoke of his "nervous anticipation" ahead of a new role that will see most of the key Lions decisions taken by him.

He admitted it would be a "huge challenge" to the entire squad - on and off the field - to remain focused as a group during these trying times.

"Obviously it is not just the change of coach, which is bad, since these are not the circumstances under which you want [to get] this job or get into this position," Ackermann told this website.

He added that the uncertainty surrounding the Lions' future - whether they would be playing Super Rugby in 2013 - was also contributing to the challenge of keeping the players focused.

"However, the players showed they can put these issues aside," the new head coach said, adding: "Hopefully by the weekend all 22 players will be fully focused on the game [against the Stormers at Newlands on Saturday].

"The [GLRU] President [Kevin de Klerk] spoke to the guys and we gave them a long weekend, so today [Monday] was the first day that they were at a training session without John [Mitchell].

"There was uncertainty about what to expect, so that was a big adjustment.

"Hopefully by Thursday they are more settled and used to the changes [in the coaching set-up]. Hopefully we will be competitive this weekend and put up a good game [against the Stormers]."

By Jan de Koning

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sat, 24 February 2018
Sunwolves v Brumbies 04h15 Tokyo
Crusaders v Chiefs 06h35 Christchurch
Waratahs v Stormers 08h45 Allianz Park
Treviso v Connacht 12h00 Stadio Monigo
Lions v Jaguares 13h05 Johannesburg
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Ireland v Wales 14h15 Aviva Stadium
Harlequins v Newcastle Falcons 14h30 Twickenham Stoop
Gloucester v Wasps 14h30 Kingsholm
Bath v Sale Sharks 14h30 Recreation Ground
Bulls v Hurricanes 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Scotland v England 16h45 BT Murrayfield
Ospreys v Cheetahs 17h30 Liberty Stadium
Scarlets v Ulster 19h35 Parc y Scarlets
Sun, 25 February 2018
Zebre v Cardiff Blues 13h00 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
London Irish v Worcester Warriors 13h00 Madejski Stadium
Saracens v Leicester Tigers 15h30 Allianz Park
Fri, 02 March 2018
Blues v Chiefs 06h35 Eden Park
Reds v Brumbies 09h00 Suncorp Stadium
Kings v Dragons 17h35 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Edinburgh v Munster 19h35 Myreside
Cardiff Blues v Treviso 19h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Ulster v Glasgow Warriors 19h35 Kingspan Stadium
Harlequins v Bath 19h45 Twickenham Stoop
Sat, 03 March 2018
Sunwolves v Rebels 22h00 Tokyo
RESULT SCORE
Fri, 23 February 2018
France v Italy 34 | 17
Leinster v Kings 64 | 7
Dragons v Edinburgh 12 | 25
Munster v Glasgow Warriors 21 | 10
Rebels v Reds 45 | 19
Highlanders v Blues 41 | 34
Mon, 19 February 2018
NWU-Pukke v UJ 18 | 15
Maties v CUT-Ixias 75 | 12
UCT-Ikeys v Shimlas 27 | 32
NMMU-Madibaz v Wits 29 | 32
Sun, 18 February 2018
Dragons v Treviso 15 | 18
Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 13 | 7
Sat, 17 February 2018
Cardiff Blues v Munster 25 | 18
Lions v Sharks 26 | 19
Leinster v Scarlets 20 | 13
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Rebels 1 1 0 0 5
Brumbies 0 0 0 0 0
Waratahs 0 0 0 0 0
Sunwolves 0 0 0 0 0
Reds 1 0 0 1 0
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Highlanders 1 1 0 0 4
Blues 1 0 0 1 1
Crusaders 0 0 0 0 0
Hurricanes 0 0 0 0 0
Chiefs 0 0 0 0 0
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 1 1 0 0 4
Lions 1 1 0 0 4
Sharks 1 0 0 1 1
Bulls 0 0 0 0 0
Jaguares 1 0 0 1 0