Lions brought down to earth

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 08:29

SUPER RUGBY REACTION: Johan Ackermann believes his side were brought down to earth by the Jaguares after they were forced to fight back to bag a "Test match" victory.

The Lions found themselves 14-21 down going into the final 10 minutes but managed to grab the victory thanks to a late converted try and an Elton Jantjies penalty. 

"It was frustrating because we didn't play the rugby we wanted to. There was a lot of opportunities in the first half [that we should have taken] and they [Jaguares] shouldn't have been in the game at half-time. 

"We knew that if we don't put them away, they would come back because they have a lot of quality players - they did that to take the lead and we had to fight hard to get the win. I have to give compliments as well to score a try when it was needed and Elton [Jantjies] kicking the penalty to win the 'Test' match. 

"The guys were mentally challenged after last week's victory and it shows you how quickly you get brought down to earth," Ackermann said.

Lions captain Warren Whiteley gave credit to the Jaguares for the way they imposed themselves at the breakdowns.

"I must say they [Jaguares] are strategically smart. They know when to slow the game down and speed it up. They put us under pressure and we weren't accurate at ruck time. They don't go away and fight at every breakdown.

"They stopped our maul and we weren't tight enough. Maybe we were not mentally switched on. 

"We are a bit disappointed but grateful for the win. We had to fight and it [the win] is really important for us. This is what we needed as it keeps us on our toes and keeps us honest," Whiteley said.

Ackermann added that his side lacked accuracy but is grateful for the scrappy victory.

"The disappointing thing was the accuracy of our team and the fact that we lost a lot of ball with stupid passes. Our intensity wasn't there but it is a massive win.

"If you can win scraps then it's good. It was difficult to get tempo and the rhythm wasn't there but we must keep in mind that if you are not switched on, then you make it difficult for yourself," Ackermann added.


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Team P W D L Pts
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Highlanders 12 9 0 3 41
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Cheetahs 12 2 0 10 11
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Sharks 12 8 1 3 38
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