Super Rugby

Lions beat Jaguares in Buenos Aires




Argentina’s Jaguares start the 2019 Super Rugby season at home in Buenos Aires, where they will host the Lions in the final match of the round.

The Jaguares have played the Lions seven times since 2016, winning three matches and losing four. There have been no draws.

  • Each of the previous seven meetings between the Jaguares and Lions has been won by the home team on the day, with the Lions currently hold the edge with four wins to the Jaguares’ three.
  • The Jaguares have won eight of their last 10 games at home against South African opposition, including their last four on the bounce across which they’ve scored an average of 39 points per game.
  • The Lions have lost their last four games in a row outside South Africa; the last time they lost more was a nine-game stretch from 2011 to 2014.
  • The Jaguares kicked 15 penalty goals in the opening 20 minutes of their matches last season, the most of any team, while the Lions kicked just two, with no team converting fewer.
  • Lions duo Kwagga Smith (31) and Malcolm Marx (27) won more turnovers than anyone else in Super Rugby 2018.

Match detail

We are waiting for the kickoff.

1.00: PEEEEP! Elton Jantjies kicks off for the Lions. 

2.00: Standard procedure from Warren Whiteley, who opts for touch rather than the three points.

3.00: Guido Petti brings down the maul, opt for another kick to touch and they score, this time. It’s Marnus Schoeman, who gets up with the ball. 0-5

4.00: MISS! Jantjies’ kick is well wide. 0-5

6.00: Joaquin Diaz Bonilla, taking over from the great Nicolas Sanchez, boots a big kick to halfway.

8.00: Diaz Bonilla hit a bomb that the Lions could not handle, losing the ball forward. Scrum to the hosts, just inside the visitor’s half.

10.00: The home team wins a penalty, and Diaz Bonilla calls for the tee.

13.00: PENALTY! The flyhalf puts his team on the board with a good shot. 3-5

15.00: The Argentines are getting some good go-forward ball, making metres through the middle of the park. Some good defending by Malcolm Marx, but the Jaguares are stringing together a long series of phases in the Lions’ 22.

16.00: TRY! The Jaguares, finally go wide, retain the ball, but it’s quick-ball with lots of smart offloads. Agustin Creevy, especially with some magic before Santiago Medrano barged his way over. 8-3

17.00: CONVERSION! It’s good from Diaz Bonilla. 10-5

19.00: The game started hot for the South Africans, but the tide has turned in favour of the South Americans. Good game, though.

21.00: The Jaguares have had 73% possession, 75% territory with five turnovers, already. Never mind the 45 tackles that the Lions have had to make.

23.00: Tomas Lavanini is pinged for driving early in the lineout. It’s another 5m lineout for the Lions. The referee calls new skipper Jeronimo de la Fuente over and gives him a talking to.

25.00: Great defence by the Jaguares pack; it’s Pablo Matera, who wins the penalty, giving the hosts a chance to clear the danger.

26.00: Lionel Mapoe is sanctioned for a high tackle after Ramiro Moyano collected a high ball and started a counter-attack.

27.00: PENALTY! Diaz Bonilla makes no mistake with the penalty. 13-5

28.00: The Lions win a penalty at the breakdown; Jantjies will take a shot at goal.

29.00: PENALTY! Jantjies reduces the deficit. 13-8

31.00: Marx loses the ball, in contact, with the try line at his mercy. Poor from the hooker. It leads to only the second scrum of the game – glorious.

32.00: TRY! Massive scrum from the Lions; Schoeman is at it again, getting over for his second. 13-13

33.00: CONVERSION! Jantjies puts his men in front, from the corner. Good kick. 13-15

35.00: The Supersport commentators are lipreading Jantjies and translating the Jaguares coaching bench’s instructions to their players. Very impressive, despite it being tedious.

37.00: Territory and possession have dropped dramatically to 59% and 55%, respectively, for the Jaguares. The Lions’ tackle count is impressive; 54 of 59 attempts, which has stymied the South Americans’ attack.

39.00: The Lions have made a good comeback after their slow start, but they have started to lose the ball too easily in contact.

41.00: The hooter sounds before a Lions’ scrum, Nic Groome passes to Courtnall Skosan, who launches the ball into touch.

The halftime score was Jaguares 13 Lions 15

41.00: PEEEEP! We are back underway in Buenos Aires, where the Lions hold a slender lead over the home side.

43.00: The Lions get out of jail after a superb rolling maul from the Jaguares until they were pinged for obstruction.

46.00: The Lions are starting to get the upper hand in the scrum-set piece. The Jaguars front row is struggling, now.

48.00: The South Africans are flying into the tackles, knocking the South Americans backwards; dominating the collisions, which is how you beat this side.

49.00: Whiteley takes another lineout, and the Lions drive towards the whitewash.

50.00: TRY! The maul disintegrates, but it’s the man of the moment Schoeman, who digs the ball out of the ruck and powers over for the hat-trick. I bet you wished you had him in your fantasy team. 

52.00: CONVERSION! Jantjies adds the extras. 13-22

54.00: Swys de Bruin’s men have a firm grip on this game; they are forcing the Jaguares into mistakes, winning the collisions and have the better of the set pieces.

56.00: Mapoe loses the ball after a big hit from Matias Orlando. Scrum to the Lions inside their half. I’m confused. Must have missed the knock= on by the Jags. Oh well!

58.00: The Jaguares win a penalty for a Lions’ holding infringement, and they will get to relieve the pressure with Diaz Bonilla’s boot.

59.00: We are entering the final quarter. The home team is two scores down and need to find their mojo before it’s too late.

60.00: PENALTY! The kick is good! Game on. 16-22

62.00: Both teams are ringing the changes, the “finishers”, as Eddie Jones has coined them, are going to be very important, now.

66.00: The game is opening up, or at least the players are starting to throw the ball around. Jantjies and Dillon Smit rip the ball away from an attacker, on their line, and the Lions clear. Big defence by those two.

68.00: The Lions win a penalty in a kickable position; Jantjies calls for his tee. He is warned by the ref to stop wasting time and get on with the game.

70.00: PENALTY! It’s good from the Springbok, taking the Lions back to a two-score lead. 16-25

73.00: Frans van Wyk is pinged for collapsing in the scrum. Diaz Bonilla kicks to the corner. It’s now or never for the hosts if they are to mount a comeback.

75.00: This has been a frustrating display – yet again – by the Jaguares. Every season, packed with internationals who have played together for years, they disappoint with an erratic performance. Creevy looks disgusted as he moves to his seat.

77.00: The Lions scramble defence has been immense, they have put their bodies on the line and won a hard-fought victory in Argentina.

79.00: The game is winding down with a midfield scrum: How very Jaguares.

80.00: Jaguares’ captain de la Fuente gives away a penalty. Whiteley calls for calm, and a kick to the corner as his side look for a bonus point.

81.00: The attack is fluffed out, but the South Africans come away with an impressive, historic first victory in the Americas: Well played.


In the meantime, why not have a look at the match preview.

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The final score is Jaguares 16 (13) Lions 25 (15)


Tries – Medrano
Pen – Diaz Bonilla (3)
Con – Diaz Bonilla
Drop –
Cards –

Tries – Schoeman (3)
Pen – Jantjies (2)
Con – Jantjies (2)
Drop –
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee: Mike Fraser
Assistant Ref 1: Brendon Pickerill
Assistant Ref 2: Rasta Rasivhenge
TMO: Santiago Borsani


Jaguares: 15 Joaquin Tuculet, 14 Bautista Delguy, 13 Matias Orlando, 12 Jeronimo de la Fuente (captain), 11 Ramiro Moyano, 10 Joaquin Diaz Bonilla, 9 Gonzalo Bertranou, 8 Javier Ortega Desio, 7 Rodrigo Bruni, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Tomas Lavanini, 4 Guido Petti, 3 Santiago Medrano, 2 Agustin Creevy, 1 Mayco Vivas.

Replacements: 16 Julian Montoya, 17 Juan Pablo Zeiss, 18 Enrique Pieretto, 19 Matias Alemanno, 20 Marcos Kremer, 21 Martin Landajo, 22 Juan Cruz Mallia, 23 Matias Moroni.

Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Courtnall Skosan, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Harold Vorster, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Hacjivah Dayimani, 6 Marnus Schoeman, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Rhyno Herbst, 3 Carlu Sadie, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Dylan Smith.

Replacements: 16 Pieter Jansen, 17 Frans Van Wyk, 18 Jacobie Adriaanse, 19 Ruan Vermaak, 20 Robert Kruger, 21 Dillon Smit, 22 Wandisile Simelane, 23 Ruan Combrinck.

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