Highlanders end Sharks' home run

Fri, 25 Apr 2014 19:03
Large aaron smith scores630

The Highlanders ended the Sharks' unbeaten streak at Kings Park when they scored four tries in a bonus-point 34-18 victory on Friday.

The Highlanders ended the Sharks' unbeaten streak at Kings Park this season when they scored four tries in a bonus-point 34-18 victory on Friday.

The visitors scored three of their tries in the first half and then held off a spirited fight back from the Sharks who did not manage to find their way over the tryline at all.

The Sharks remain at the top of the standings, but took no log points from their final home game before their overseas tour, whilst the Highlanders got their tour off to the best possible start with a full house.

Richard Buckman, Aaron Smith and Shane Christie all scored tries in the opening 40 minutes, before Malakai Fekitoa's superb solo score wrapped up the win.

Tim Swiel kicked all the points for the hosts, who were dealt a blow before kick-off when captain Bismarck du Plessis and Jean Deysel were ruled out through injury with Kyle Cooper and Etienne Oosthuizen drafted in.

The Highlanders began well by taking the lead inside three minutes when the home side were penalised at the scrum, allowing Lima Sopoaga to slot over.

From the restart, Aaron Smith knocked on allowing the Sharks their first attack, and when the ball was spread to the left, Lwazi Mvovo thought he had scored the opening try, only for television official Shaun Veldsman to rule that Charl McLeod's pass was forward.

However, advantage was being played for a breakdown infringement and Tim Swiel levelled the score in the seventh minute.

The rookie flyhalf missed his second kick at goal from wide on the right when Patrick Osborne erred, but made amends by putting his side in front after 14 minutes when Nasi Manu was caught making a side entry at the ruck.

The Highlanders, though, grabbed the opening try after 16 minutes when Buckman did excellently to finish Shaun Treeby's superb grubber kick that pierced open the home defence on the right.

Another penalty straight after the restart, this time for off-side against the New Zealanders, allowed Swiel to cut the gap to one, although more relentless pressure cut open the Sharks defence for a second time after 27 minutes as Aaron Smith went in under the posts.

And after Swiel squandered another penalty, the competition pace-setters were shocked when Christie was on the end of a huge maul from the visitors leaving the home crowd dumbstruck at 24-9 after only 34 minutes.

Fortunately, Swiel found his range with a tough kick after the hooter leaving the deficit at 12 at the changeover.

Jake White's men needed a big second half and they got the perfect start with Swiel landing three more points after Ben Smith failed to roll away.

Things got better for them when Joseph Wheeler received a yellow card for playing the man in the air at an attacking line-out - Swiel bringing the gap to just six.

The Durbanites failed to capitalise on their man advantage, with the Otago side taking the lead back to nine points with 14 minutes to play through another Sopoaga penalty.

Fekitoa then scored the try of the game when he collected the ball on the halfway mark and weaved his way through a whole host of players, before touching down close to the post to seal the bonus-point point try and with it, the win.

Man of the match: There were a number of candidates from the ranks of the Highlanders with the likes of Ben Smith, Aaron Smith, Richard Buckman and Shane Christie making a big impression, but the stand-out was outside centre Malakai Fekitoa who provided the highlight of the match with his superb bonus-point try.

The scorers:

For the Sharks:
Pens:
Swiel 6

For the Highlanders:
Tries:
Buckamn, A. Smith, Christie, Fekitoa
Cons: Sopoaga 4
Pens: Sopoaga 2

Teams:

Sharks:
15 Lwazi Mvovo, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Paul Jordaan, 12 Frans Steyn, 11 Sibusiso Sithole, 10 Tim Swiel, 9 Charl McLeod (captain), 8 Keegan Daniel, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Kyle Cooper, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16 Franco Marais, 17 Dale Chadwick, 18 Lourens Adriaanse, 19 Lubabalo Mtembu, 20 Ryan Kankowski, 21 Stefan Ungerer, 22 Heimar Williams, 23 SP Marais.

Highlanders: 15 Ben Smith (co-captain), 14 Richard Buckman, 13 Malakai Fekitoa, 12 Shaun Treeby, 11 Patrick Osborne, 10 Lima Sopoaga, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Nasi Manu (co-captain), 7 Shane Christie, 6 Elliot Dixon, 5 Joe Wheeler, 4 Jarrad Hoeata, 3 Chris King, 2 Liam Coltman, 1 Kane Hames.
Replacements: 16 Ged Robinson, 17 Craig Millar, 18 Ma'afu Fia, 19 Josh Bekhuis, 20 Gareth Evans, 21 Fumiaki Tanaka, 22 Trent Renata, 23 John Hardie..

Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Stuart Berry, Quinton Immelman (South Africa)
TMO: Shaun Veldsman (South Africa)

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Wed, 31 May 2017
New Zealand U20 v Scotland U20 07h00 AIA Arena
England U20 v Samoa U20 07h00 Tbilisi
South Africa U20 v France U20 09h30 Tbilisi
Ireland U20 v Italy U20 09h30 AIA Arena
Argentina U20 v Georgia U20 12h00 Tbilisi
Australia U20 v Wales U20 14h30 Tbilisi
Fri, 02 June 2017
Blues v Reds 07h35 Auckland
Sat, 03 June 2017
Crusaders v Highlanders 02h35 Christchurch
Chiefs v Waratahs 05h05 Hamilton
NZ Barbarians v B&I Lions 07h35 Toll Stadium
Brumbies v Rebels 09h45 Canberra
Force v Hurricanes 11h35 Perth
Sun, 04 June 2017
Ireland U20 v Scotland U20 07h00 AIA Arena
Argentina U20 v France U20 07h00 Tbilisi
New Zealand U20 v Italy U20 09h30 AIA Arena
Australia U20 v Samoa U20 09h30 Tbilisi
South Africa U20 v Georgia U20 12h00 Tbilisi
England U20 v Wales U20 14h30 Tbilisi
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 28 May 2017
Lions v Kings 54 | 10
Sat, 27 May 2017
Jaguares v Brumbies 15 | 39
Munster v Scarlets 22 | 46
Sharks v Stormers 22 | 10
Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 20 | 23
Bulls v Hurricanes 20 | 34
Rebels v Crusaders 19 | 41
Highlanders v Waratahs 44 | 28
Sunwolves v Cheetahs 7 | 47
Fri, 26 May 2017
Reds v Force 26 | 40
Blues v Chiefs 16 | 16
Sun, 21 May 2017
Waratahs v Rebels 50 | 23
Sat, 20 May 2017
Kings v Brumbies 10 | 19
Munster v Ospreys 23 | 3
Wasps v Leicester Tigers 21 | 20
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 12 5 0 7 28
Waratahs 12 4 0 8 19
Force 12 4 0 8 17
Reds 12 3 0 9 16
Rebels 12 1 1 10 8
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 13 13 0 0 59
Hurricanes 12 10 0 2 48
Highlanders 13 10 0 3 45
Chiefs 12 9 1 2 45
Blues 13 6 1 6 33
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 12 7 0 5 34
Cheetahs 13 3 0 10 16
Bulls 12 3 0 9 15
Sunwolves 12 1 0 11 7
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 13 12 0 1 56
Sharks 13 9 1 3 42
Jaguares 12 5 0 7 24
Kings 12 4 0 8 19