Nobody wins in Kings Park card games

Sat, 22 Apr 2017 14:06

SUPER RUGBY REPORT: The Sharks and Rebels played to a 9-all draw in what must rank as the most dour match of the season.

In fact it is fitting that nobody won in this tryless snorefest, in Durban on Saturday.

The game  produced five cards - three yellow cards to the Rebels and two red cards, one to each team.

To suggest the Sharks' discipline was shocking is a gross understatement.

They are fortunate they did not concede more than just one red card.

And the Rebels were not far behind.

However, their penalties had a slightly less nasty undertone and more of a cynical nature to them.

Sharks teenage flyhalf Curwin Bosch thought he had won the match after giving his team the lead for the first time with a 78th-minute penalty.

But the Rebels levelled after the full-time hooter sounded in the Round Nine game when full-back Reece Hodge calmly slotted an angled, medium-range penalty

Bosch and Hodge were the only scorers, kicking three penalties each in the least entertaining match at Kings Park stadium this season.

South African referee Marius van der Westhuizen yellow-carded Rebels skipper and scrumhalf Nic Stirzaker after five minutes for a deliberate knock-on.

After 18 minutes, he showed Sharks centre Andre Esterhuizen a red card for a dangerous tackle on wing Sefanaia Naivalu.

Esterhuizen grabbed the giant Fijian around the throat and flung him face-first to the ground.

Amid the indiscipline, Hodge kicked two penalties and Bosch one to leave the Rebels 6-3 ahead at half-time.

Substitute Rebels hooker James Hanson walked to the sin-bin on 53 minutes for deliberately collapsing a maul.

A pushover try by the South Africans was disallowed a minute later and the Australians awarded a penalty when lock Ruan Botha was penalised for foul play.

Amazingly, given the punishment meted to Esterhuizen, the substitute forward grabbed an opponent around the throat and was fortunate to remain on the field.

Stirzaker was yellow-carded again for another intentional knock-on with 11 minutes left and an automatic red card followed.

In the battle of the boots, Bosch kicked his second penalty on 64 minutes to restore equality ahead of the dramatic climax to the game.

"Drawing was not a bad result given we struggled to string together multi-phase attacks," said Stirzaker.

"The yellow and red cards slowed the match down and the defences were dominant throughout."

Sharks skipper and loose forward Lubabalo Mtembu said his team felt they had lost even despite collecting two points.

"We never gained momentum and let our supporters down," he admitted.

"If we play like this against the Jaguares in Argentina next weekend, we will be in big trouble."

Sharks are four points above the Jaguares in what appears to be a two-team race to finish as the best runners-up in the Africa conferences and reach the knockout phase.

Rebels remained bottom of the Australian standings, but after five straight losses they have taken six points by shocking the Brumbies and holding the Sharks.

Man of the match: This was a game of such poor standards that we refuse to award anybody!


For the Sharks:
 Bosch 3

For the Rebels:
 Hodge 2

Yellow cards: Nic Stirzaker (Rebels, 4 and 69 - cynical fouls, slapping the ball down), James Hanson (Rebels, 53 - cynical foul, collapsing the maul)
Red cards: Andre Esterhuizen (Sharks, 17 - foul play, spear tackle), Nick Stirzaker (Rebels, 69 - two yellow card)


Sharks: 15 Rhyno Smith, 14 Lukhanyo Am, 13 Jeremy Ward, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Cobus Reinach, 8 Daniel du Preez, 7 Philip van der Walt, 6 Lubabalo Mtembu (captain), 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Coenraad Oosthuizen, 2 Franco Marais, 1 Tendai  Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16 Mahlatse Ralepelle, 17 Thomas du Toit, 18 Lourens Adriaanse, 19 Ruan Botha, 20 Jacques Vermeulen, 21 Michael Claassens, 22 Benhard Janse van Rensburg, 23 Odwa Ndungane.

Melbourne Rebels: 15 Reece Hodge, 14 Sefa Naivalu, 13 Tom English, 12 Mitch Inman, 11 Ben Volavola, 10 Jack Debreczeni, 9 Nic Stirzaker (captain), 8 Amanaki Mafi, 7 Will Miller, 6 Jake Schatz, 5 Steve Cummins, 4 Culum Retallick, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 2 Siliva Siliva, 1 Fereti Sa'aga.
Replacements: 16 James Hanson, 17 Laurie Weeks, 18 Tom Moloney, 19 Esei Haangana, 20 Hugh Sinclair, 21 Mick Snowden, 22 Jackson Garden-Bachop, 23 Sione Tuipulotu.

Referee: Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Egon Seconds (South Africa), Stuart Berry (South Africa)
TMO: Marius Jonker (South Africa)

Pictures by Wayne Seagreen

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Fri, 24 November 2017
Cheetahs v Edinburgh 17h30 Bloemfontein
Ulster v Treviso 19h05 Kingspan Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Connacht 19h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Leinster v Dragons 19h35 RDS Stadium
Newcastle Falcons v Gloucester 19h45 Kingston Park
Sat, 25 November 2017
Leicester Tigers v Worcester Warriors 12h45 Welford Road
Bath v Harlequins 12h45 Recreation Ground
Italy v South Africa 13h00 Rome
Scotland v Australia 14h30 Cardiff
England v Samoa 15h00 Twickenham
Wales v New Zealand 17h15 Cardiff
Sale Sharks v Northampton Saints 17h30 AJ Bell Stadium
Ireland v Argentina 17h30 Aviva Stadium
France v Japan 19h00 Paris
Sun, 26 November 2017
Ospreys v Glasgow Warriors 13h00 Liberty Stadium
Kings v Scarlets 13h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Zebre v Munster 13h30 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Saracens v Exeter Chiefs 15h00 Allianz Park
London Irish v Wasps 15h00 Madejski Stadium
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 15 6 0 9 34
Force 15 6 0 9 26
Reds 15 4 0 11 21
Waratahs 15 4 0 11 19
Rebels 15 1 1 13 9
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 15 14 0 1 63
Hurricanes 15 12 0 3 58
Chiefs 15 12 1 2 57
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 51
Blues 15 7 1 7 37
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 15 10 0 5 43
Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Bulls 15 4 0 11 20
Sunwolves 15 2 0 13 12
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 15 14 0 1 65
Sharks 15 9 1 5 42
Jaguares 15 7 0 8 33
Kings 15 6 0 9 28