Lions get Bok boost for play-offs

Tue, 04 Oct 2016 14:06
Large johan ackermann 800

CURRIE CUP SPOTLIGHT: Golden Lions coach Johan Ackermann will welcome back a couple of Springboks for the Currie Cup semifinals.

Scrumhalf Francois de Klerk and prop Julian Redelinghuys will both be available for selection when they complete their obligations with the national team - which takes on the All Blacks in Durban on Saturday in the final round of the Rugby Championship.

"To my understanding, we cannot make use of contracted Springboks," the coach said, adding: "But Faf [De Klerk] and Julian [Redelinghuys] are not contracted Springboks players - so they are available for selection.

"However, I cannot say if they will play the semifinals, we just have to wait and see."

After beating the Sharks 28-16 at Ellis Park last Saturday, the Golden Lions will head to Bloemfontein to take on the inform Free State Cheetahs on October 15.

Despite a remarkable second-half comeback (from 0-13 down at the break) the coach has identified the challenges his side faced against the Sharks.

 "The scrums and the breakdowns were really under pressure during the first half," Ackermann said.

"Fortunately for us, the troops manage to correct their mistakes in the second half and came back strong," he added.

"As defending champions, our goal is to defend our title and go as far as we can in the competitions,"

"The management has given the guys time off and we will only start training on Monday [October 10]. This week will give the players the much-needed rest ahead of the crucial encounter."

In terms of his semifinal opponents, Ackerman praised Franco Smith's side the Free State Cheetahs. 

"So far the [Free State] Cheetahs have been the in-form team in the competition.

"They are a Super Rugby team and have been consistent and we really have to be on top form if we want to produce an upset in Bloemfontein,"

There are currently no matches being played
Fri, 23 March 2018
Connacht v Edinburgh 22h00 Sportsground
Munster v Scarlets 22h00 Thomond Park
Dragons v Cheetahs 22h00 Rodney Parade
Ospreys v Leinster 22h00 Liberty Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Ulster 22h00 Cardiff Arms Park
Glasgow Warriors v Zebre 22h00 Scotstoun
Kings v Treviso 22h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Crusaders v Bulls 06h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Sharks 08h45 Melbourne
Bath v Exeter Chiefs 19h45 Recreation Ground
Sat, 24 March 2018
Sunwolves v Chiefs 04h15 Tokyo
Hurricanes v Highlanders 06h35 Wellington
Saracens v Harlequins 15h00 London
London Irish v Gloucester 15h00 Madejski Stadium
Sale Sharks v Worcester Warriors 15h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Stormers v Reds 15h15 Newlands
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 17h30 Kingston Park
Jaguares v Lions 21h40 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
Sun, 25 March 2018
Leicester Tigers v Wasps 15h00 Welford Road
Sun, 18 March 2018
Waratahs v Rebels 51 | 27
Sat, 17 March 2018
Jaguares v Reds 7 | 18
Wales v France 14 | 13
Lions v Sunwolves 40 | 38
England v Ireland 15 | 24
Stormers v Blues 37 | 20
Italy v Scotland 27 | 29
Brumbies v Sharks 24 | 17
Highlanders v Crusaders 25 | 17
Fri, 16 March 2018
Cardiff Blues v Treviso 31 | 25
Edinburgh v Munster 12 | 6
Chiefs v Bulls 41 | 28
Sun, 11 March 2018
Wales v Italy 38 | 14
Sat, 10 March 2018
Jaguares v Waratahs 38 | 28
France v England 22 | 16
Team P W D L Pts
Sharks 12 10 0 2 47
Western Province 12 7 0 5 37
Golden Lions 12 6 0 6 35
Blue Bulls 12 5 0 7 32
Free State Cheetahs 12 6 0 6 31
Pumas 12 4 0 8 27
Griquas 12 4 0 8 26