Sharks break SA's Indian Ocean duck

Fri, 02 May 2014 11:27
Large rebels v sharks

The Sharks became the first South African team to win in Australasian this year, when they edged the Rebels 22-16 in Melbourne on Friday.

The Sharks became the first South African team to win in Australasia this year, when they edged the Rebels 22-16 in Melbourne on Friday.

Despite being clearly the superior outfit, a combination of their own shocking execution, poor tackling and a string of questionable calls kept the Rebels within striking distance throughout.

The teams scored one try each - although the Sharks were denied an obvious penalty try in what was one of those strange rulings - with the boot of Frans Steyn (five penalties) beating the boot of Jason Woodward (three penalties).

That made them the first SA team to cross the Indian Ocean and win - 12 weeks into the competition. As a result they cemented their place at the top of both the SA conference and global standings.

The dubious calls were not restricted to those that went against the Sharks. The Rebels' try should have been disallowed - not because Bismarck du Plessis was still talking to his team on instruction of the referee, but because the sneaky quick tap was not legal.

Apart from breaking the Indian Ocean duck, the result is a huge morale booster for the Durban-based team, who suffered a humiliating loss against the Highlanders at home last week.

Rebels fans will bemoan their team's own high error count - as they dominated territory and possession, but let themselves down with costly handling errors and penalties through a lack of discipline.

In their usual fashion, the Rebels, who have won six of their last seven games at home, refused to lay down.

The win will add a little more spice to their encounter next week with Australian conference leaders the Brumbies, when the Sharks' Director of Rugby coach Jake White returns to face his old team for the first time.

In the second minute of the match Hegarty batted a ball dead as Sharks fullback Lwazi Mvovo attempted to grab it and touch down. However, only a penalty was awarded, despite the TMO constantly hinting at a penalty try.

The Melbourne side made more runs and line-breaks and gained more metres than their rivals, yet found themselves going to the dressing room 6-15 down at the interval - five Steyn penalties to two from Woodward.

The Rebels reduced their arrears with a third Woodward penalty with 25 minutes to go, and the game was up for grabs.

Then the league leaders were able to stamp themselves on proceedings, with Lwazi Mvovo and JP Pietersen combined to devastating effect after a promising Rebels attack broke down.

The Durban-based side broke swiftly on a counter from their own 22, with Mvovo accelerating down the pitch before feeding Pietersen, who was able to saunter towards the try-line to ground the ball one handed.

Steyn stretched the lead to 13 points when he converted - 22-9 with 20 minutes to go.

With 10 minutes to go an tempers fraying, the referee called the captains together. While Du Plessis was still chatting to his troops, a quick tap allowed replacement Pat Leafa to scored his side's try. Even if the referee had called time on, the try should not have been allowed, given that the quick tap was not a legal one.

Woodward's conversion made it a six-point game (22-16), which is how it stayed to the end.

Man of the match: Lwazi Mvovo and JP Pietersen combined brilliantly to produce the only legal try of the match. Forwards like Stephan Lewies, Willem Alberts, Bismarck du Plessis and Tendai Mtawarira put in huge efforts. However, our award goes to Sharks flank Jean Deysel, who not only produced the game's biggest tackle count - by some distance - but was very effective with ball in hand.

The scorers:

For the Rebels:
Try:
Leafa
Con: Woodward
Pens: Woodward 3

For the Sharks:
Try:
Pietersen
Con: Steyn
Pens: Steyn 5

Teams:

Rebels: 15 Jason Woodward, 14 Male Sau, 13 Tamati Ellison, 12 Mitch Inman, 11 Tom English, 10 Bryce Hegarty, 9 Luke Burgess, 8 Scott Higginbotham (captain), 7 Scott Fuglistaller, 6 Colby Fainga'a, 5 Luke Jones, 4 Cadeyrn Neville, 3 Laurie Weeks, 2 Shota Horie, 1 Cruze Ah-Nau.
Replacements: 16 Pat Leafa, 17 Max Lahiff, 18 Paul Alo-Emilie, 19 Hugh Pyle, 20 Sean McMahon, 21 Nic Stirzaker, 22 Tom Kingston, 23 Angus Roberts.

Sharks: 15 Lwazi Mvovo, 14 Odwa Ndungane, 13 Paul Jordaan, 12 Heimar Williams, 11 JP Pietersen, 10 Francois Steyn, 9 Charl McLeod, 8 Ryan Kankowski, 7 Jean Deysel, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Willem Alberts, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis (captain), 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16 Kyle Cooper, 17 Dale Chadwick, 18 Lourens Adriaanse, 19 Etienne Oosthuizen, 20 Keegan Daniel, 21 Cobus Reinach, 22 Fred Zeilinga, 23 SP Marais.

Referee: Andrew Lees (Australia)
Assistant referees: Rohan Hoffmann, James Leckie (Australia)
TMO: Peter Marshall (Australia)

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sun, 24 September 2017
London Irish v Northampton Saints 13h00 Madejski Stadium
Exeter Chiefs v Wasps 14h00 Sandy Park
Fri, 29 September 2017
Sharks v Golden Lions 17h00 Durban
Newcastle Falcons v London Irish 18h35 Kingston Park
Worcester Warriors v Saracens 18h35 Sixways
Sale Sharks v Gloucester 19h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Glasgow Warriors v Treviso 19h35 Scotstoun Stadium
Leinster v Edinburgh 19h35 RDS Arena
Scarlets v Connacht 19h35 Parc y Scarlets
Sat, 30 September 2017
Griquas v Free State Cheetahs 12h00 Kimberley
Leicester Tigers v Exeter Chiefs 13h00 Welford Road
Munster v Cardiff Blues 13h30 Thomond Park
Northampton Saints v Harlequins 14h00 Franklin's Gardens
Cheetahs v Ospreys 14h00 Bloemfontein
Wasps v Bath 14h00 Ricoh Arena
Zebre v Ulster 14h35 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
South Africa v Australia 15h05 Bloemfontein
Dragons v Kings 18h35 Rodney Parade
Sun, 01 October 2017
Argentina v New Zealand 22h30 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 15 6 0 9 34
Force 15 6 0 9 26
Reds 15 4 0 11 21
Waratahs 15 4 0 11 19
Rebels 15 1 1 13 9
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 15 14 0 1 63
Hurricanes 15 12 0 3 58
Chiefs 15 12 1 2 57
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 51
Blues 15 7 1 7 37
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 15 10 0 5 43
Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Bulls 15 4 0 11 20
Sunwolves 15 2 0 13 12
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 15 14 0 1 65
Sharks 15 9 1 5 42
Jaguares 15 7 0 8 33
Kings 15 6 0 9 28