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Super Rugby | Johannesburg
13:05 (GMT) | 24-02-2018
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Thank you for joining us. Stay tuned for some more Super Rugby action. Up next Bulls vs Hurricanes
  • 80
After the restart, the Lions looks to run after the siren sounded. Play comes to an end with a handling error. and the ref blows his final whistle.
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Jantjies adds the extras
  • 78
Lions scrum in good attacking position and they play a few phases before captain Whiteley runs a beautiful line to go over for a try
  • 76
Sanchez adds the extras
  • 75
A bit of madness all over the park by both teams that sees the Jags score another try after Delguy chased down a box kick with no one at the back for the Lions
  • 72
Sanchez adds the extras
  • 71
The Jags manages to create an opportunity against the run of play. and Bautista Delguy scores a try
  • 70
The ref goes upstairs and spots foul play and Julian Montoya is sent of with a yellow card
  • 69
The Jags attacking in front of goal and they win a penalty for not releasing
  • 68
Jags line-out and they look to attack the midfield. Sanchez puts in a cross-kick but the ball goes into touch off a Lions hand
  • 67
The Lions clears into touch from the scrum
  • 66
After the restart the Jags manages to spark a line break but they fail to finish as Kwagga Smith corrects his mistake to make a try saving tackle. Lions scrum inside their own 22
  • 64
Jantjies adds the extras
  • 63
The Lions still with ball in hand and edging closer. They build a number of phases before Rohan Janse van Rensburg powers his way over for a try
  • 61
The Lions running the ball from the line-out but the Jags defense holds strong
  • 60
Another penalty won by the Lions and again they opt for touch
  • 59
The Lions wins another tighthead scrum. Penalty awarded to the Lions and they opt for touch
  • 58
The Lions attacking from their own goal line. They take the ball up to 50m mark before it is knocked on
  • 56
The Lions pack outmuscles the Jags at the scrum and wins the ball back. Lions scrum on their own 5m line
  • 55
After the restart, momentum again swings the other way as the Jags are back on the attack. Yards away from the try line and they win a penalty. The Jags opts for the scrum
  • 53
Jantjies adds the extras
  • 52
After the restart, the Jags wins a penalty and opts for touch. They make a meal out of the their line-out ball and the Lions attacks from deep inside their own half. The ball finds Dyantyi in space who turns on the afterburners to run clear for a try
  • 50
Sanchez makes no mistake
  • 49
After the restart, momentum swings the other way and the Jaguares wins a penalty right in front of goal and they opt for 3 points
  • 47
Jantjies adds the extras
  • 46
The Lions attacks wide from the scrum and some brilliant play by the Lions' backline sets up Sylvian Mahuza for a try
  • 44
Both teams make use of the boot before the Jags knocks the ball forward on the halfway line
  • 43
The Lions is penalized at the scrum. The Jags opts for touch. The Line-out is secured and the Jags clears as the Lions look to counter
  • 42
Scrum reset
  • 41
The 2nd half gets on the way and the Lions wins an early penalty for a player being played in the air. The Lions opt for touch. The Lions fail to secure the ball at the maul and the ball is lost forward. Jaguares scrum deep inside their own half

Half Time

  • 40
At the restart, the ball is knocked forward by the Jags and the ref blows the final whistle of the half
  • 39
Jantjies adds the extras
  • 38
The Lions attack wide from the scrum and a perfectly timed pass by Mapoe sees Coetzee go over for a try
  • 37
Free-kick for the Lions for an early-shove by the Jags
  • 36
The Lions tries to force the blind and the ball is lost forward. Scrum for the away team. Pressure relieved for the Jags
  • 35
Scrum reset
  • 34
The Lions are back on the attack after the restart. Scrum for the home team on the Jags' 22
  • 33
Penalty try stands
  • 32
The Lions still with the ball in hand as Whitely finds space. His final pass is knocked down deliberately. The ref awards a penalty try and shows Bautista Delguy a yellow card
  • 30
At the return of play, possession changes hands a couple of times. The home team building a couple of phases
  • 27
Jantjies fails to add the extras
  • 26
The Lions wins a penalty and Cronje looks to speed things up as he taps quickly but gets taken down inside the Jags 22. The Lions plays a couple of phases before they spread it wide and Aphiwe Dyantyi goes over for a try
  • 24
Scrum penalty for the Jags and they opt for touch. The Lions wins the ball back and looks to build an attack on the blindside but their momentum is stopped by a forward pass. Scrum for the Jags
  • 23
The Lions fails to secure their line-out ball but they manage to win a scrum on the 5 of the Jags as they trap them behind the goalline
  • 22
Penalty for the Lions in the middle of the park and they opt for touch
  • 21
The Lions attacks the midfield as Mapoe breaks a couple of tackles. The Lions building a few phases before Cronje hits a gap but the ball is won back by the Jags who clears into touch
  • 19
Scrum penalty for the Lions as the Jaguares goes down. The home team opts for touch
  • 18
At the return of play, the Jags are back on the attack but a forward pass stops their momentum. Scrum for the Lions close to their own 22
  • 17
Boffelli who takes the longer kicks for the Jags makes no error
  • 16
Penalty at the line-out for the Jags and they opt for goal
  • 15
Free-kick for the home team and Cronje taps it quickly and gains a few yards before he is taken down. Jantjies tries another cross-kick but the ball goes into touch
  • 14
The Jags over-throws and Marx collects the ball. The ball is turned over by the away team and cleared into touch
  • 13
The Lions attacking the midfield but Harold Vorster is penalized on the ground. The Jags opts for touch
  • 11
Touch found close to the away teams try line. The Jags manages to spoil the line-out ball but the ball is knocked down and the Lions is awarded a scrum in good attacking position
  • 10
Penalty for the Lions at the scrum and they opt for touch
  • 9
Scrum for the away team inside the Lions half after the home team passed the ball forward. Scrum reset.
  • 7
The Lions wins their line-out ball and gets the rolling maul going but they are taken down short and just as they look to spread it wide the ball is intercepted and cleared by the Jags
  • 5
After the restart, the Lions gets the ball back and they win a penalty and opt for touch
  • 3
Sanchez add the extras
  • 2
The Jaguares spreads the ball wide and finds Emiliano Boffelli in space with a little bit of work to do still and he scores the 1st try of the game
  • 1
The Jaguares gets the game on the way and the Lions secures as Kwagga Smith takes it in the air. Jantjies opts for a cross-kick inside their own half. The Lions wins a penalty and opts for touch. The Lions runs the ball up in the middle after their line-out. Creevy wins a penalty on the ground and they opt for touch
  • -5
The players are doing their final preparations before running onto the field. Referee Jaco Peyper will be in charge of this fixture
  • -10
Players to look out for in the Lions line-up will have to be Andries Coetzee, Aphiwe Dyantyi, and Malcolm Marx while the Jaguares will expect strong performances by Joaquin Tuculet, Emiliano Boffelli, and Pablo Matera
  • -20
After a successful performance by the Lions in round 1, beating their fellow countrymen the Sharks in a tightly contested affair that almost went down to the wire, the Lions will look to improve on last weekend. The Jaguares despite their dominant 2nd half performance could not outplay the Stormers at Newlands. This will be a very fast-paced game as both teams like giving the ball air. The Lions will, however, be wary of making the game too loose. Ultimately this game will come down to who dominates set plays. The Jaguares will hope to pick up a few bonus points if they can.
  • -30
Welcome to Ellis Park, Johannesburg where the Lions will face the Jaguares in this round 2 Super Rugby clash.
Mc lions logo 85
  • 1 Jacques van Rooyen
  • 2 Malcolm Marx
  • 3 Ruan Dreyer
  • 4 Andries Ferreira
  • 5 Franco Mostert
  • 6 Albertus Smith
  • 7 Cyle Brink
  • 8 Warren Whiteley
  • 9 Ross Cronje
  • 10 Elton Jantjies
  • 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi
  • 12 Harold Vorster
  • 13 Lionel Mapoe
  • 14 Sylvian Mahuza
  • 15 Andries Coetzee
  • 16 Robbie Coetzee
  • 17 Dylan Smith
  • 18 Jacobus Adriaanse
  • 19 Lourens Erasmus
  • 20 Hacjivah Dayimani
  • 21 Marco Jansen van Vuuren
  • 22 Howard Mnisi
  • 23 Rohan Janse van Rensburg
  • 1 Felipe Arregui
  • 2 Agustin Creevy
  • 3 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro
  • 4 Guido Petti
  • 5 Tomas Lavanini
  • 6 Pablo Matera
  • 7 Javier Ortega
  • 8 Leonardo Senatore
  • 9 Gonzalo Betranou
  • 10 Nicolas Sanchez
  • 11 Emiliano Boffelli
  • 12 Bautista Ezcurra
  • 13 Matias Orlando
  • 14 Bautista Delguy
  • 15 Joaquin Tuculet
  • 16 Julian Montoya
  • 17 Javier Manuel
  • 18 Juan Pabllo Zeiss
  • 19 Matías Alemanno
  • 20 Marcos Kremer
  • 21 Martín Landajo
  • 22 Ramiro Moyano
  • 23 Juan Manuel Leguizamon
Mc article super rugby round two 2 800

Preview: Super Rugby, Round Two - Part Two

Thu, 22 Feb 2018 21:23

WALL-TO-WALL: Strap yourself in. There are 12 hours of uninterrupted action on the first full Saturday of the season.

It starts with the Sunwolves - now being used to prepare the Japan national team just like the Jaguares are an extension of Argentina. The Japanese franchise host the Brumbies in Tokyo in the first match of the marathon session.

That is followed by what must be the match of the weekend - the defending champion Crusaders at home to the Chiefs, a settled team against a franchise with plenty of personnel changes, including a new head coach.

A short hop across the Tasman sea and the Waratahs host the Stormers.

We then cross the Indian Ocean where the Lions, beaten finalists the last two years, start their quest to win their first Super Rugby title since 1993 - when they host the Jaguares at Ellis Park.

The day concludes when the Bulls, now under the tutoring of New Zealander John Mitchell, take on the Hurricanes in Pretoria.

We look at Round Two's Saturday matches!

Saturday, February 24

Sunwolves v Brumbies
(Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium, Tokyo - Kick-off: 13.15; 15.15 AEST; 04.15 GMT)

There is no attempt to conceal the fact that Japan's rugby bosses are using the Sunwolves to help prepare their national team for the World Cup tournament they host next year.

Jamie Joseph, the New Zealand who played for the All Blacks and Japan, is coach of the Sunwolves and the Japan national team.

He is leaning heavily on foreign imports - with South Africa one of the biggest sources of for his playing roster.

Even without prop Ruan Smith who, left the franchise for "family reasons", Joseph still has six South Africans in his Super Rugby squad - Hencus van Wyk, Grant Hattingh, Wimpie van der Walt, Pieter Labuschagne, Willem Britz and Gerhard van den Heever.

Britz, Labuschagne and Grant Hattingh are all in the starting XV for Saturday. They are being earmarked to represent Japan at the World Cup next year.

Van der Walt has already made his international debut for Japan.

Joseph admitted they face a tough challenge in the Brumbies.

"I anticipate that they are going to put a lot of pressure on the set pieces - like scrum and line-out," Joseph said.

"Plus, they have tough backs that are really hard to stop."

The Brumbies are a team in transition, of sorts.

They have a new head coach in Dan McKellar, who took over from Stephen Larkham at the end of last year.

The Brumbies were greeted by snow at their first training session in Tokyo on Thursday, with temperatures expected to be as low as three degrees for the game.

"We've had a look at the Sunwolves, the reality is the coaching staff is the same group as the national team," McKellar said.

"But to a certain extent, you're guessing.

"We're focused on ourselves and getting our plan right, making sure we turn up to execute well and get the outcome we want.

"They'll bring a whole lot of enthusiasm, a whole lot of energy and will play off the cuff. We have to be ready for that."

Previous result:
2016: Brumbies won 66-5, Canberra

Prediction: The Brumbies will start favourites, but don't write off the Sunwolves altogether. They have upset teams in the past and once they get on the front foot, they play with an energy that is difficult to contain. Still, the Brumbies should win by at least 15 points.


Sunwolves: 15 Jason Emery, 14 Lomano Lava Lemeki, 13 Timothy Lafaele, 12 Ryoto Nakamura, 11 Hosea Saumaki, 10 Robbie Robinson, 9 Yutaka Nagare (captain), 8 Willem Britz, 7 Pieter Labuschagne, 6 Kazuki Himeno, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4 Sam Wykes, 3 Jiwon Koo, 2 Ho Shota Horie, 1 Keita Inagaki.         
Replacements: 16 Jaba Bregvadze, 17 Craig Millar, 18 Asaeli Ai Valu, 19 James Moore, 20 Edward Quirk, 21 Fumiaki Tanaka, 22 Hayden Parker, 23 Sione Teaupa.

Brumbies: 15 Tom Banks, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Kyle Godwin, 11 Chance Peni, 10 Christian Lealiifano, 9 Joe Powell, 8 Isi Naisarani, 7 Tom Cusack, 6 Rob Valetini, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Richie Arnold, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 Josh Mann-Rea, 1 Ben Alexander.
Replacements: 16 Robbie Abel, 17 Faalelei Sione, 18 Leslie Leulua'iali'i-Makin, 19 Rory Arnold, 20 Lachlan Mccaffrey, 21 Matt Lucas, 22 Wharenui Hawera, 23 Lausii Taliauli.

Referee: Paul Williams (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Egon Seconds (South Africa), Shuhei Kubo (Japan)
TMO: Minoru Fuji (Japan)

Crusaders v Chiefs
(AMI Stadium, Christchurch - Kick-off: 19.35; 06.35 GMT)

Apart from the numerous All Blacks on show, the Chiefs and Crusaders have a history of meeting in the opening week - facing off against each other three times in the last decade in Christchurch.

They played in 2009 (Crusaders won 19-13), 2014 (Chiefs won 18-10), 2016 (Chiefs won 27-21), and now this weekend, which is eagerly awaited throughout the country.

Chiefs coach Colin Cooper cannot wait to get his first crack at the defending-champion Crusaders with his new franchise.

"We know it has to happen," he said, adding: "We have to play down in Christchurch this year, so playing the Crusaders first, we're not daunted by it, we're excited by it, going to Christchurch and their backyard."

Crusaders back Jack Goodhue admitted they will have a target on their backs as defending champions, but are up for the challenge.

"It will be about attitude," the 2017 All Black said.

"[It is about] how much we want it.

"The boys are excited for this first round.

"We will just play our own game and hopefully start the season well."

The other talking point is about exciting utility back Damian McKenzie playing at No.10.

The Chiefs coach, Cooper, selected a physical and experienced lineup to set the benchmark for the side's 2018 campaign.

The starting XV features five 2017 All Blacks in the forward pack alone, as well as the much-talked-about combination of Brad Weber and Damian McKenzie in the No.9 and No.10 jerseys.

"Everyone is talking about Damian, but it's just about giving him time at No.10," Cooper said.

"Brad is coming off injury, but played really well in the pre-season and shows a lot of excitement if he can get into space."

Goodhue said they know what to expect.

"With Damian [McKenzie] at No.10, he will want to run it a bit more," the midfielder said, adding: "He is an exciting player.

"He gets a lot of reward for his high-risk game."

Recent results:
2017: Crusaders won 27-13, Christchurch (semifinal)
2017: Crusaders won 31-24, Suva
2016: Chiefs won 23-13, Suva
2016: Chiefs won 27-21, Christchurch
2015: Chiefs won 26-9, Christchurch
2015: Chiefs won 40-16, Hamilton

Prediction: It is, without doubt, the match of the weekend and a tough game to call. The Chiefs, despite the many changes, have threats all over the park. However, the Crusaders look a more solid, all-round team and should win a real Kiwi arm-wrestle by five points.


Crusaders: 15 David Havili, 14 Seta Tamanivalu, 13 Jack Goodhue, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 George Bridge, 10 Richie Mo'unga, 9 Bryn Hall, 8 Jordan Taufua, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Peter Samu, 5 Samuel Whitelock (captain), 4 Luke Romano, 3 Michael Alaalatoa, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Wyatt Crockett.              
Replacements: 16 Ben Funnell, 17 Chris King, 18 Oliver Jager, 19 Scott Barrett, 20 Billy Harmon, 21 Mitchell Drummond, 22 Mitchell Hunt, 23 Manasa Mataele.

Chiefs: 15 Charlie Ngatai (captain), 14 Shaun Stevenson, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Johnny Faauli, 11 Solomon Alaimalo, 10 Damian McKenzie, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Taleni Seu, 7 Sam Cane (captain), 6 Mitchell Brown, 5 Dominic Bird, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Nathan Harris, 1 Aidan Ross.
Replacements: 16 Liam Polwart, 17 Atunaisa Moli, 18 Angus Ta'avao, 19 Liam Messam, 20 Lachlan Boshier, 21 Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, 22 Marty McKenzie, 23 Sean Wainui.

Referee: Ben O'Keeffe (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Nick Briant (New Zealand), James Doleman (New Zealand)
TMO: Aaron Paterson (New Zealand)

Waratahs v Stormers
(Allianz Stadium, Sydney - Kick-off: 19.45; 08.45 GMT; 10.45 SA Time)

The Waratahs, determined to lift themselves from the mire of mediocrity they slipped into last year, host a Stormers team determined to prove their detractors wrong.

Waratahs coach Daryl Gibson said the team is ready to play.

"The game against the Stormers will be a physical contest and it's a chance for our guys to show what they have, and what we have been focusing on delivering," Gibson said.

"The kind of start we had against the Rebels [in a pre-season trial] last week was too slow for my liking, and we cannot afford to do that against the Stormers.

"We will need to up the tempo."

Wallaby No.6 Ned Hanigan also spoke of the physical nature of the opposition.

"They are very direct, upfront and physical, so it'll warm the shoulders up for the season ahead, we're looking forward to it," Hanigan said.

"If you win the contact zone more than half the time in a game you're probably going to win.

"This weekend will be a contest in that area and it's something that we're looking forward to, getting geared up to get into it."

Stormers coach Robbie Fleck said that his team is determined to carry the momentum they gained from last week's narrow win over the Jaguares in their first game on tour.

"It has been a good week for us in Sydney and the players are focused on making a positive start to the tour," Fleck said.

"We know there are several areas in which we can improve, so we will be giving it everything on Saturday," he added.

Recent results:
2016: Waratahs won 32-30, Cape Town
2015: Stormers won 32-18, Sydney
2014: Waratahs won 22-11, Cape Town
2013: Waratahs won 21-15, Sydney
2012: Stormers won 19-13, Cape Town

Prediction:  The Stormers can win in Sydney, as they have done before. But is this Stormers selection of the same quality as the class of 2015? Coach Robbie Fleck spoke at length about rustiness last week and that 'rustiness' will most likely cost them. The Waratahs by 12 points.


Waratahs: 15 Israel Folau, 14 Andrew Kellaway, 13 Lalakai Foketi, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Curtis Rona, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Jake Gordon, 8 Michael Wells, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Ned Hanigan, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Tom Staniforth, 3 Paddy Ryan, 2 Damien Fitzpatrick, 1 Tom Robertson.          
Replacements: 16 Hugh Roach, 17 Harry Johnson-Holmes, 18 Shambeckler Vui, 19 Nick Palmer, 20 Jed Holloway, 21 Mitch Short, 22 Bryce Hegarty, 23 Alex Newsome.

Stormers: 15 Sarel Marais, 14 Dillyn Leyds, 13 Johannes Engelbrecht, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Damian Willemse, 9 Dewaldt Duvenage, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Kobus van Dyk, 6 Siyamthanda Kolisi (captain), 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 John Schickerling, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Ramone Samuels, 1 Steven Kitshoff.
Replacements: 16 Dean Muir, 17 Jacobus Janse van Rensburg, 18 Carlu Sadie, 19 Chris van Zyl, 20 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 21 Justin Phillips, 22 George Whitehead, 23 EW Viljoen.

Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia)
Assistant referees: Mike Fraser (New Zealand), William Houston (Australia)
TMO: George Ayoub (Australia)

Lions v Jaguares
(Ellis Park, Johannesburg - Kick-off: 15.05; 13.05 GMT; 10.50 Buenos Aires time)

The Jaguares are looking to break a trend that has existed since their entry into Super Rugby.

They have beaten the Lions twice in Buenos Aires and have lost twice in Johannesburg.

However, their lack of discipline has often been their biggest problem and could come back to haunt then against the free-running Lions.

Lions coach Swys de Bruin is cautious, pointing to how the Argentinians came back against the Stormers - showing their true qualities in the last 20 minutes at Newlands.

"They are an international team, no doubt," De Bruin said.

"It is going to be very important that we maintain our disciplinary standards."

He said they will not creep into their shells and become conservative in their approach.

"We have been playing a particular brand [of rugby] for the last five years and we are going to stick to that."

De Bruin said they have worked very hard on fixing their wonky line-outs.

Jaguares lock Guido Petti suggested they may target the Lions' scrum.

"The scrum was very good [against the Stormers] and we want to continue along that line," Petti said.

The lock described the Lions as a "dynamic" team, which opens the game up and looks to attack the open spaces out wide.

Recent results:
2017: Lions won 24-21, Johannesburg
2017: Jaguares won 36-24, Buenos Aires
2016: Jaguares won 34-22, Buenos Aires
2016: Lions won 52-24, Johannesburg

Prediction: Discipline is indeed the key word for this game. If the Jaguares maintain their composure they will be in with a realistic chance of winning at Ellis Park for the first time. However, the Lions showed last week they do have the experience to win tight games and should win by 12 points.


Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Sylvian Mahuza, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Harold Vorster, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Albertus Smith, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Jacques Van Rooyen.
Replacements: 16 Robbie Coetzee, 17 Dylan Smith, 18 Jacobus Adriaanse, 19 Lourens Erasmus, 20 Hacjivah Dayimani, 21 Marco Jansen Van Vuren, 22 Howard Mnisi, 23 Rohan Janse Van Rensburg.

Jaguares: 15 Joaquin Tuculet, 14 Bautista Delguy, 13 Matias Orlando, 12 Bautista Ezcurra, 11 Emiliano Boffelli, 10 Nicolas Sanchez, 9 Gonzalo Bertranou, 8 Tomas Lezana, 7 Javier Ortega, 6 Pablo Matera (captain), 5 Tomas Lavanini, 4 Guido Petti, 3 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, 2 Agustin Creevy, 1 Felipe Arregui.
Replacements: 16 Julian Montoya, 17 Javier Manuel, 18 Juan Pablo Zeiss, 19 Matias Alemanno, 20 Marcos Kremer, 21 Martin Landajo, 22 Leonardo Senatore, 23 Ramiro Moyano.

Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa)
Assistant referees: AJ Jacobs (South Africa), Jaco Pretorius (South Africa)
TMO: Willie Vos (South Africa)

Bulls v Hurricanes
(Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria - Kick-off: 17.15; 15.15 GMT; 04.15, Sunday, February 25 NZ time)

Bulls captain Burger Odendaal  jokingly said there were more journalists at Thursday's media briefing than there were in the stands last year.

As that idiom goes: Many a true word said in jest.

The fact is, John Mitchell has been tasked with getting the Bulls up to a respectable standard and ensure the spectators return to Loftus Versfeld.

Mitchell was keen to see the competition starting and his campaign as Bulls coach get underway.

"The wait is finally over for us," the former All Black mentor said.

"We worked hard to get to this point and that work and progress will now be tested against one of the best teams in the competition.

"It is a tough way to start, but we would not want it any other way.

"We know we play a very decent team, but our squad will be pretty focussed on our own outcomes and how to get there.

"We worked hard to this point, but we understand that we will not be the complete product yet.

"It remains a fantastic competition and I am happy to be back as a coach. We have a number of objectives we want to achieve in Super Rugby and we can finally start testing our progress against a very capable opponent."

Bulls captain, Burger Odendaal, despite his somewhat comical reference to the empty stands, was pleased to have a home start.

"We love playing at Loftus Versfeld and realise that we owe our loyal supporters a good season," Odendaal said.

"The guys are pretty determined to deliver just that. We face some formidable opponents in the Hurricanes, but this is our home and we are committed to start something special as a group."

The talking point around the Hurricanes team is the decision to leave World Rugby Player of the Year Beauden Barrett on the bench.

It is part of an agreement with New Zealand rugby.

Hurricanes coach Chris Boyd confirmed his All Blacks are to miss two Super Rugby matches.

Having Barrett as insurance on the bench is not a bad compromise.

"Jeez, I might get myself in trouble here," Boyd said in a teleconference call from Pretoria.

"Am I allowed to talk about that?

"The All Black management and coaches have no input on when or how, but we have a requirement to give our All Blacks two weeks where they don't play at the end of the week.

"That's our choice when we do that and why, but they require an additional two weeks rest."

Recent results:
2017: Hurricanes won 34-20, Pretoria
2015: Hurricanes won 17-13, Pretoria
2014: Hurricanes win 25-20, Wellington
2013: Bulls won 48-14, Pretoria
2011: Bulls won 26-14, Napier

Prediction: Is it too soon for John Mitchell to have a real impact on the Bulls? Gut instinct says it will take a few weeks. Then again, gut instinct is not always correct. We think the Hurricanes will win a hard-fought battle - by nine points.


Bulls: 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Burger Odendaal (captain ), 11 Johnny Kotze, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Andre Warner, 8 Hanro Liebenberg, 7 Thembelani Bholi, 6 Roelof Smit, 5 Lodewyk de Jager, 4 Rudolf Snyman, 3 Frans van Wyk, Jaco Visagie, 1 Pierre Schoeman.
Replacements: 16 Adriaan Strauss, 17 Lizo Gqoboka, 18 Conraad van Vuuren, 19 Nic de Jager, 20 Marco van Staden, 21 Embrose Papier, 22 Marnitz Boshoff, Divan Rossouw.

Hurricanes: 15 Matt Proctor, 14 Julian Savea, 13 Vince Aso, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Wes Goosen, 10 Ihaia West, 9 Thomas Perenara, 8 Gareth Evans, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Brad Shields (captain), 5 Sam Lousi, 4 Vaea Fifita, 3 Ben May, 2 Ricky Riccitelli, 1 Toby Smith.
Replacements: 16 James O'Reilly, 17 Chris Eves, 18 Alex Fidow, 19 Murray Douglas, 20 Blade Thomson, 21 Jamie Booth, 22 Beauden Barrett, 23 Ben Lam.

Referee: Rasta Rasivhenge (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa), Stephen Geldenhuys (South Africa)
TMO: Marius Jonker (South Africa)

Compiled by Jan de Koning


Mc article lions v jaguares 800

Lions race to the top

Sat, 24 Feb 2018 13:00

SUPER RUGBY MATCH REPORT: The Lions moved to the top of the standings with an impressive seven-try demolition of the Jaguares at Ellis Park on Saturday.

It was not perfect, far from it. But the Lions were better by the proverbial country mile.

After a slow start - the Jaguares held a 10-0 lead at the end of the first quarter - the Lions stormed back to take a 19-10 lead at the half-time break.

It could have been far worse, as the Lions were at times their own worst enemies - with sloppy play.

It also didn't help that the referee was very, very lenient towards them - allowing clearly offside players to continue participating.

The Jaguares' discipline again let them down badly, so much so that referee Jaco Peyper decided to speak to the Argentineans about it - even going as far as warning flyhalf Nicolas Sanchez about 'making accusations'.

Add to that the fact the visitors wanted to slow the game down to a crawl and the Lions sped it up and you have the difference between the two sides.

The Lions got off to the worst possible start. A quick passing move from the Jaguares ended with Emiliano Boffelli scoring the game's first try on the left in the third minute.

The hosts found themselves even further behind in the 18th minute. The Jaguares won a penalty near the halfway line and Boffelli kicked the three points.

In the 27th minute, the Lions finally broke their duck. After they worked the ball out to the left, Aphiwe Dyantyi showed what a gem the Lions have in him when he scored their first try - stepping inside one defender and handing off another.

The Jaguares shot themselves in the foot shortly afterwards, when Bautista Delguy picked up a yellow card for a deliberate knock down, for which Jaco Peyper awarded the Lions a penalty try.

Andries Coetzee gave the Lions some breathing space on the stroke of half-time. Lionel Mapoe fed him on the right and he finished off the Lions' third try - 19-10 at the break.

The hosts picked up where they left off after the break. They moved the ball wide, following a scrum and Sylvian Mahuza sprinted through on the right, evading Delguy's attempted tackle and going all the way to the try line in the 47th minute.

Nicolás Sánchez reduced the deficit with a penalty from right under the poles in the 51st minute, but the Lions hit straight back. Dyantyi scored a superb solo try a minute later, running round the outside of several Jaguares defenders, before stepping inside another to finish.

The Lions continued to dominate, and in the 64th minute, Rohan Janse van Rensburg powered his way through under the posts after a patient build-up from the hosts.

The Argentinians nearly scored against the run of play three minutes afterwards, but Albertus Smith made a fantastic try-saving tackle, halting Ramiro Moyano in his tracks on the left.

Smith was at the centre of the action again in the 71st minute, when Julián Montoya was yellow-carded for illegally attempting to clean him out, driving in with his shoulder.

However, Delguy made amends for his earlier yellow card straight afterwards, pouncing on a stray pass from Hacjivah Dayimani out wide and going all the way for a try.

In the 76th minute, Delguy struck again. He chased down Landajo's kick into space and even though he was at least two metres ahead of the kicker, referee Jaco Peyper allowed the try to stand.

However, if the game hadn't already been won by the Lions, Warren Whiteley finished it off in the dying moments. After receiving the ball from Elton Jantjies, he evaded two Jaguares defenders with a great run.

Man of the match: Of course a number of players did put up their hands, but we won't waste your time. Our award goes to the new magic man - Lions wing Aphiwe Dyantyi, blistering pace, a mesmerising step and something to behold with the ball in hand.

The scorers:

For the Lions:
 Dyantyi 2, Penalty try, Coetzee, Mahuza, Janse van Rensburg, Whiteley
Cons: Jantjies 5; Penalty try does not require a conversion - it's a seven-point try

For the Jaguares:
 Boffelli, Delguy 2
Cons: Sanchez 3
Pens: Boffelli 2

Yellow cards: Bautista Delguy (Jaguares, 32 - cynical foul, ball deliberately slapped down), Julian Montoya (Jaguares, 70 - foul play, shoulder charge at the ruck)


Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Sylvian Mahuza, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Harold Vorster, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Albertus Smith, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Jacques Van Rooyen.
Replacements: 16 Robbie Coetzee, 17 Dylan Smith, 18 Jacobus Adriaanse, 19 Lourens Erasmus, 20 Hacjivah Dayimani, 21 Marco Jansen Van Vuren, 22 Howard Mnisi, 23 Rohan Janse Van Rensburg.

Jaguares: 15 Joaquin Tuculet, 14 Bautista Delguy, 13 Matias Orlando, 12 Bautista Ezcurra, 11 Emiliano Boffelli, 10 Nicolas Sanchez, 9 Gonzalo Bertranou, 8 Tomas Lezana, 7 Javier Ortega, 6 Pablo Matera (captain), 5 Tomas Lavanini, 4 Guido Petti, 3 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, 2 Agustin Creevy, 1 Felipe Arregui.
Replacements: 16 Julian Montoya, 17 Javier Manuel, 18 Juan Pablo Zeiss, 19 Matias Alemanno, 20 Marcos Kremer, 21 Martin Landajo, 22 Leonardo Senatore, 23 Ramiro Moyano.

Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa)
Assistant referees: AJ Jacobs (South Africa), Jaco Pretorius (South Africa)
TMO: Willie Vos (South Africa)

Aphiwe Dyantyi (26min), Andries Coetzee (38min), Sylvian Mahuza (46min), Aphiwe Dyantyi (52min), Rohan Janse van Rensburg (63min), and Warren Whiteley (78min)
Emiliano Boffelli (2min), Bautista Delguy (71min), and Bautista Delguy (75min)
Elton Jantjies (39min), Elton Jantjies (47min), Elton Jantjies (53min), Elton Jantjies (64min), and Elton Jantjies (79min)
Nicolas Sanchez (3min), Nicolas Sanchez (72min), and Nicolas Sanchez (76min)
Emiliano Boffelli (17min) and Nicolas Sanchez (50min)
Bautista Delguy (32min) and Julian Montoya (70min)
VENUE Johannesburg
REFEREE Jaco Peyper (South Africa)