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Lions keep the pressure on rivals with Stormers win

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The Lions moved back into the playoff places by beating the Stormers 41-22 with a bonus point at their home Emirates Airline (Ellis) Park on Saturday.

The Lions outscored the Stormers by six tries to three in the match with Kwagga Smith crossing twice for the home side.

The victory is the Lions third straight win over the Stormers in Johannesburg as the Cape Town side has not won in the city since 2015.

The result moves the Lions up to second place in the South African Super rugby conference while leaving the Stormers as the last place team in that group.

Kwagga Smith was team captain for the match in the absence of Warren Whiteley who was out due to injury. Smith delivered an excellent all-around performance and set the standard for his teammates to follow.

Smith was the first to score in the match by powering through a weak tackle from the Stormers after a 5m line out in the 9th minute.

Flyhalf Shaun Reynolds started the match as Elton Jantjies was stood down for breaching team protocols. Reynolds missed his opening conversion but it mattered little as once the Lions had opened the scoring they were never really under any threat of losing the match and led the scoreboard from that point.

Fullback Andries Coetzee, wings Courtnall Skosan and Aphiwe Dyantyi, and replacement Hacjivah Dayimani also crossed for the Lions. Reynolds finished with four conversions from six attempts and a penalty.

The Stormers three tries came from loose forward Johan du Toit, scrumhalf Herschel Jantjies and flyhalf Josh Stander. Stander also kicked two conversions and a penalty.

The closest the Stormers got to the Lions was just before half time when Johan du Toit burst through inside the Lions 22 in front of the posts and scored the Cape side’s opening try. Stander added the conversion which meant the Stormers trailed by just three points at half time.

However, three minutes into the second half the Lions pulled away again when Smith scored in the corner.

Lionel Mapoe excelled with several mid-field breaks which created tries for Courtnall Skosan and later for Aphiwe Dyantyi. In between the Stormers responded with a close-range try by scrumhalf Herschel Jantjies and later Joshua Stander.

The Lions maintained their high tempo and the final try came for the hosts two minutes from full time as Hacjivah Dayimani scored the bonus point try.

Next week the Lions host the Hurricanes at home in Johannesburg while the Stormers host the Sunwolves at home in Cape Town.

Final Score Lions 41 (13) Stormers 22 (10)

Scorers

Lions
Tries – K.Smith 2, A. Coetzee, C. Skosan, A.Dyanti, H. Dayimani
Pen – S.Reynolds
Con -S.Reynold 4
Drop –
Cards –

Stormers
Tries – J. du Toit, H.Jantjies, J. Stander
Pen – J.Stander
Con – J.Stander 2
Drop –
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee: Marius van der Westhuizen
Assistant Ref 1: Cwengile Jadezweni
Assistant Ref 2: Stefan Geldenhuys
TMO: Marius Jonker

Teams

Lions

15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Courtnall Skosan, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Harold Vorster, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Shaun Reynolds, 9 Ross Cronjé, 8 Kwagga Smith (captain), 7 Vincent Tshituka, 6 Cyle Brink, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Stephan Lewies, 3 Carlü Sadie, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Dylan Smith

Replacements: 16 Jan-Henning Campher, 17 Sti Sithole, 18 Johannes Jonker, 19 Reinhard Nothnagel, 20 Marnus Schoeman, 21 Hacjivah Dayimani, 22 Nic Groom, 23 Tyrone Green

Stormers

15 Damian Willemse, 14 Seabelo Senatla, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Dillyn Leyds, 10 Josh Stander, 9 Herschel Jantjies, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Johan du Toit, 6 Jaco Coetzee, 5 Cobus Wiese, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Wilco Louw, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Steven Kitshoff (captain)

Replacements: 16 Chad Solomon, 17 Corne Fourie, 18 Frans Malherbe, 19 Ernst van Rhyn, 20 Marno Redelinghuys, 21 Justin Phillips, 22 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 23 Dan Kriel

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