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Highlanders get back to winning ways against Lions

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The Highlanders got back to winning ways in Super Rugby by beating the Lions 39-27 at the Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin.

The victory is the Highlanders 11th straight win at Forsyth Barr Stadium as their last loss in the stadium was in March 2017.

The Highlanders ended their tour of South Africa last week with a loss to the Sharks in Durban so this victory puts them back on a positive note.

The result is the Lions third straight loss on tour and they return to South Africa with one win from four outside of South Africa on this leg.

South Africa’s leading side the Lions have now played twelve matches in 2018 and won six and lost six.

The Lions are second in the overall standings by virtue of them being the leading SA side but have fewer points at 31 than the Highlanders who are fifth with 32 points after 7 wins from 10 matches.

The Highlanders led the match throughout and put themselves in a position to press for the victory when Marnus Schoeman scored and Jantjies converted to put the Lions within reach at 33-27 with seven minutes remaining.

Athough the Lions made the strong finish in the final quarter poor discipline cost the Lions as Lima Sopoaga kicked two late penalties to give his side a comfortable 12-point win.

Soon to be departing Highlanders’ marksman Sopoaga kept the scoreboard ticking – and the Highlanders in charge – with a match haul of 19 points including the contest’s opening try in the third minute.

Liam Coltman, Luke Whitelock, Waisake Naholo and Tei Walden also scored tries for the Highlanders.

Lions hooker Robbie Coetzee scored a brace of tries from line out mauls while Harold Vorster scored the first of the Lions four tries.

Next week the Highlanders travel to Sydney to play the Waratahs while the Lions will host the Brumbies at home in Johannesburg.

Final Score Highlanders 39 (19) Lions 27 (15)

Scorers

Highlanders
Tries – L.Sopoaga, L.Coltman, L.Whitelock, W.Naholo, T.Walden
Pen – L.Sopoaga 2
Con -L.Sopoaga 4
Drop –
Cards –

Lions
Tries – H.Vorster, R.Coetzee 2, M.Schoeman
Pen – E.Jantjies
Con – E.Jantjies 2
Drop –
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee: Angus Gardner
Assistant Ref 1:Brendon Pickerill
Assistant Ref 2: James Doleman
TMO : Glenn Newman

Teams

Highlanders

15 Ben Smith (captain), 14 Waisake Naholo, 13 Rob Thompson, 12 Tei Walden, 11 Tevita Nabura, 10 Lima Sopoaga, 9 Kayne Hammington, 8 Luke Whitelock, 7 James Lentjes, 6 Elliot Dixon, 5 Tom Franklin, 4 Alex Ainley, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 2 Liam Coltman, 1 Daniel Lienert-Brown

Replacements: 16 Ash Dixon, 17 Aki Seiuli, 18 Kalolo Tuiloma, 19 Josh Dickson, 20 Marino Mikaele-Tu’u, 21 Josh Renton, 22 Josh Ioane, 23 Sio Tomkinson

Lions

15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Ruan Combrinck, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Harold Vorster, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Kwagga Smith, 7 Franco Mostert (captain), 6 Cyle Brink, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Johannes Jonker, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Dylan Smith

Replacements: 16 Jacques van Rooyen, 17 Ruan Dreyer, 18 Jacobie Adriaanse, 19 Lourens Erasmus, 20 Marnus Schoeman, 21 Dillon Smit, 22 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 23 Sylvian Mahuza

 

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