Blue Bulls hammer Golden Lions
MATCH REPORT: The Blue Bulls ran in eight tries to beat the Golden Lions 54-22 in their Currie Cup Round Three clash at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria on Saturday.
It was the Bulls' second win in this year's tournament. They beat Griquas in Round One before enjoying a bye in Round Two.
The Golden Lions managed to walk away with a bonus point for scoring four tries at Loftus.
The Bulls started the game like men possessed and found themselves leading 21-0 after 11 minutes. Tries from Piet van Zyl, Ruben van Heerden and Tony Jantjies, who converted all three, put the Bulls in a comfortable position.
The Lions finally found their feet 10 minutes later and they were rewarded for some good phase play when wing Aphiwe Dyantyi went over in the corner for a try in the 23rd minute. Shaun Reynolds could not convert.
The visitors were also helped by the Bulls being reduced to 14 men before Dyantyi's try when Irne Herbst was sent to the sin bin for collapsing a Lions' maul in his own 22.
The Bulls' discipline did not improve after that when hooker Jan-Henning Campher joined Herbst in the sin-bin when he was yellow carded for the same infringement in the 28th minute.
Playing with only six forwards the Bulls could not stop a powerful driving maul by the Lions in the strike zone with Andrew Beerwinkel scoring the Lions' second try, which went unconverted.
The Lions were keen to take advantage of their extra men on the field and they did just that when Dyantyi stretched over for his second try in the 32nd minute after a sustained attack in the Bulls half. Again, Reynolds could not convert the try.
However, it was the Bulls who had the final say in the first half when centre Burger Odendaal burst through the Lions' defence from close range from a scrum to score his side's bonus-point try.
Jantjies added the extras and the Blue Bulls had a 28-15 lead at half-time.
The Bulls continued to look the better team with ball in hand in the second half and the Pretoria side increased their lead in the 51st minute when captain Johannes Prinsloo was put into space in the Lions' 22 to go over in the corner for his side's fifth try. For the first time in the game, Jantjies could not convert.
However, it did not take long for the Lions hit back with a try of their own. After some swift handing inside the Bulls' half, centre Nicolaas Hanekom went through a gap to score his side's bonus-point try. Reynolds converted and the Lions were only 11 points behind going into the final 25 minutes.
The Lions were then given another glimmer of hope when the Blue Bulls picked up another yellow card, this time for wing Kefentse Mahlo who tackled an opponent in the air in the 66th minute.
Instead, it was the Bulls who scored next after Lions wing Madosha Tambwe failed to deal with a Warrick Gelant grubber kick with Travis Ismaiel scooping up the loose ball to run in for the try. Jantjies converted to put his side 18 points ahead.
Gelant then gave the Lions more misery the 72nd minute when he got his name on the scoresheet with a try as well before replacement JT Jackson added the extra two points for a 25-point lead.
The game was then put to bed in the 79th minute when prop Pierre Schoeman capped off a brilliant performance with a try of his own, which Tinus de Beer converted.
Man of the match: Ruben van Heerden had a strong performance for the Bulls, while Tony Jantjies gave a good showing on attack. However, the award goes to Blue Bulls prop Pierre Schoeman for his overall work rate. He was immense in the physical stuff.
For Blue Bulls:
Tries: Van Zyl, Van Heerden, Jantjies, Odendaal, Prinsloo, Ismaiel, Gelant, Schoeman
Cons: Jantjies 5, Jackson, De Beer
For Golden Lions:
Tries: Dyantyi 2, Beerwinkel, Hanekom,
Yellow cards: Irne Herbst (Blue Bulls, 22 - cynical play, collapsing the maul); Jan-Henning Campher (Blue Bulls, 28 - cynical play, collapsing the maul); Kefentse Mahlo (Blue Bulls, 66 - foul play, tackling an opponent in the air)
Blue Bulls: 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Franco Naude, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Kefentse Mahlo, 10 Tony Jantjies, 9 Piet van Zyl, 8 Nic de Jager, 7 Jannes Kirsten, 6 Johannes Prinsloo (captain), 5 Ruben van Heerden, 4 Irne Herbst, 3 John-Roy Jenkinson, 2 Jan-Henning Campher, 1 Pierre Schoeman.
Replacements: 16 Johan Grobbelaar, 17 Matthys Basson, 18 Abongile Nonkontwana, 19 Shaun Adendorff, 20 Andre Warner, 21 Tinus de Beer, 22 JT Jackson.
Golden Lions: 15 Ashlon Davids, 14 Madosha Tambwe, 13 Nicolaas Hanekom, 12 Jarryd Sage, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Shaun Reynolds, 9 Marco Janse van Vuren, 8 Ryan Kankowski, 7 Fabian Booysen, 6 James Venter, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Rhyno Herbst, 3 Andrew Beerwinkel, 2 Michael Willemse, 1 Sithembiso Sithole.
Replacements: 16 Pieter Jansen, 17 Nico du Plessis, 18 Bobby de Wee, 19 Hacjivah Dayimani, 20 Jano Venter, 21 Morne van den Berg, 22 Jan-Louis la Grange.
Referee: Egon Seconds
Assistant referees: Jaco, Kotze, Christopher Allison
TMO: Johan Greeff