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Sunwolves v Lions Super Rugby Preview

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On Saturday Super Rugby will break new ground as Asia’s new Super Rugby franchise the Sunwolves host the Lions in Tokyo Japan.

When the Sunwolves’ first match kicks off they will become the first Northern Hemisphere Super Rugby team in the tournament’s history. Super Rugby will no longer be a Southern Hemisphere tournament as it will be global tournament.

Much is expected from the Lions in Super Rugby this year as they went through the Currie Cup without a loss and due to this plenty are picking them to be the top South African team. The Lions fortunes this season could come down to how well Elton Jantjies goes. South African Rugby is pretty thin at the moment at flyhalf and its not just the Lions that need Jantjies to deliver on his potential.

The Lions had their best Super Rugby season in over a decade last year. They started with three losses but then on tour they beat the Blues and as the season progressed they enjoyed further encouraging results. They ended the year in eighth place and many believe the Lions can reach the play offs in 2016.

The Sunwolves on the other hand are completely new and have had the least amount of time together. It will surprise few if they find themselves on the wrong end some big scores but that has happened to all of the expansion teams to date. 2016 will be more about a learning curve than results for the Sunwolves.

The Bookies have given the Sunwolves a 13 point start for this Match – with an an offer of up to $200 in Bonus bets. An established team like the Lions should not have too much trouble against a team that has only played one friendly match since they got together. The Lions should win by 14 or more.

This Match will be shown on TV in NZ, Aus, SA and in the UK on Sky Sports 2.

Match No.4 : Sunwolves v Lions
Date : Saturday 27 February 2016
Venue : Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium, Tokyo
Kick Off local: 13:15 local
Referee: Ben O’Keeffe
Assistant Ref 1:Shuhei Kubo
Assistant Ref 2:Aki Aso
TMO : Takashi Hareda

Teams

Sunwolves

15 Riaan Viljoen, 14 Akihito Yamada, 13 Harumichi Tatekawa, 12 Yu Tamura, 11 Yasutaka Sasakura, 10 Tusi Pisi, 9 Atsushi Hiwasa, 8 Edward Quirk, 7 Andrew Durutalo, 6 Liaki Moli, 5 Hitoshi Ono, 4 Timothy Vond, 3 Shinnosuke Kakinaga, 2 Shota Horie (c), 1 Keith Inagaki.

Replacements : 16 Masataka Mikami, 17 Takeshi Kizu, 18 Koki Yamamoto, 19 Shinya Makabe, 20 Yoshiya Hosoda, 21 Kaito Shigeno, 22 Derek Carpenter, 23 Hajime Yamashata.

Lions

Ruan Dreyer ,Robbie Coetzee ,Julian Redelinghuys , Andries Ferreira ,Franco Mostert , Jaco Kriel , Warwick Tecklenburg , Warren Whiteley ,Faf De Klerk , Elton Jantjies , Courtnall Skosan ,Howard Mnisi ,Lionel Mapoe , Ruan Combrinck ,Andries Coetzee

Replacements : Malcolm Marx ,Dylan Smith , Jacques Van Rooyen ,Robert Kruger , Ruan Ackermann , Jaco Van der Walt , Harold Vorster , Rohan Janse v Rensburg

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