Lions get Bok boost for play-offs

Tue, 04 Oct 2016 14:06
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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,"

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Fri, 28 April 2017
Cardiff Blues v Zebre 18h05 Cardiff
Edinburgh v Dragons 18h35 Myreside
Leinster v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 RDS Arena
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Sat, 29 April 2017
Chiefs v Sunwolves 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Waratahs 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Force v Lions 11h55 Perth
Ospreys v Ulster 14h00 Liberty Stadium
Bath v Gloucester 14h00 Recreation Ground
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Saracens v Bristol 14h00 Allianz Park
Harlequins v Wasps 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks 14h00 Welford Road
Cheetahs v Crusaders 15h15 Bloemfontein
Treviso v Munster 17h05 Stadio Monigo
Kings v Rebels 17h30 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Connacht v Scarlets 18h35 Sportsground
Jaguares v Blues 19h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 30 April 2017
Brumbies v Blues 06h05 Canberra
Fri, 05 May 2017
Hurricanes v Stormers 07h35 Westpac Stadium
RESULT SCORE
Fri, 28 April 2017
Highlanders v Stormers 57 | 14
Sun, 23 April 2017
Clermont Auvergne v Leinster 27 | 22
Sat, 22 April 2017
Sharks v Rebels 9 | 9
Bulls v Cheetahs 20 | 14
Munster v Saracens 10 | 26
Force v Chiefs 7 | 16
Crusaders v Stormers 57 | 24
Highlanders v Sunwolves 40 | 15
Fri, 21 April 2017
Lions v Jaguares 24 | 21
Waratahs v Kings 24 | 26
Hurricanes v Brumbies 56 | 21
Mon, 17 April 2017
UP-Tuks v Maties 28 | 21
Sun, 16 April 2017
Northampton Saints v Saracens 25 | 27
Bristol v Wasps 21 | 36
Sat, 15 April 2017
Connacht v Leinster 24 | 37
CURRIE CUP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Free State Cheetahs 8 8 0 0 39
Blue Bulls 8 6 0 2 30
Western Province 8 5 0 3 27
Golden Lions 8 5 0 3 26
Sharks 8 5 0 3 25
Griquas 8 4 0 4 21
Boland 8 2 0 6 11
Pumas 8 1 0 7 10
EP Kings 8 0 0 8 1