Ackermann: Lions did not pitch

Sun, 21 Aug 2016 22:17
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REACTION: Golden Lions coach Johan Ackermann does not see his team's 24-30 loss to Griquas as a 'setback'.

Ackermann, speaking to rugby365, said he sees the defeat in Kimberley in the same light as his team's loss to the Hurricanes in the early stages of Super Rugby - when they shipped 50 points.

The Lions, despite the heavy loss to the Hurricanes, went on to reach the Super Rugby Final.

Ackermann feels the lessons learnt from the defeat in Kimberley will stand the Johannesburg-based outfit in good stead.

"Some people will see it as a setback, but we don't see it as such," he told rugby365.

"It showed again that if you don't pitch up in the right frame of mind, you will not get the right result.

"Just as was the case against the Hurricane in Super Rugby we have learnt some valuable lessons.

"We can point to the fact that there are new players and new combinations, but the biggest disappointment is the intensity with which we played.

"The energy and the fluency with which we normally play was not there and our decision-making was also not there."

The Lions mentor said anybody involved in sport will know that if, on the day, one team wants it more the result will go their way.

"Sometimes the margins are millimetres," Ackermann said, adding: "One thing in this year's Currie Cup is that it is a short season and you simply can't afford many mistakes.

"We simply can't afford another bad day at the office.

"In terms of the competition, we need to ensure we get back to our standards."

The Lions coach felt that Griquas retained possession better, while the Lions made too many mistakes.

"We made 26 mistakes, 13 handling errors and we turned the ball over on another 13 occasions.

"We will have to go work on the breakdowns and our handling. There were also some aimless kicking.

"Without taking anything away from Griquas, on the day were not good at anything."

By Jan de Koning

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