Super Rugby

Seven-try Sharks batter Sunwolves




The Sharks strolled to a comfortable 50-22 victory over the Sunwolves at Kings Park, Durban.

The Sharks ran in seven tries to three with Makazole Mapimpi getting a brace in the blowout bonus-point win on South Africa’s east coast.

The victory gives the Sharks their first win of the season, ending a run of three defeats.

The handling was slick, the set-piece strong and the hosts played with pace and tempo which the Sunwolves could not handle.

The home side raced into a 24-3 halftime lead thanks to scores by Mapimpi, Armand van der Merwe and Lubabalo Mtembu.

Robert du Preez kicked an early penalty to give the hosts an early lead before the floodgates opened.

Mapimpi continued his scoring exploits with a ninth-minute try. The Sharks showed patience in the build-up with ‘Beast’ Mtawarira carrying the ball on multiple occasions.

On 25 minutes, Harumichi Tatekawa opened the Sunwolves’ account, but the Sharks hit back.

Van der Merwe, who was a colossus, scored a wonderful try to make it 15-3.

The hooker picked up the ball at the back of the ruck, broke blind, fending off Takuma Asahara and William Tupou before racing 30 metres to score.

With four minutes remaining in the half, Wian Vosloo’s break opened up the Japanese defence.

Mtembu gathered Lukhanyo Am’s pass and dived under the posts for the Sharks’ third try of the game.

The Sunwolves never gave in to their illustrious opponents and were soon rewarded with a five-pointer of their own.

Lomano Lemeki scored soon after the break to reduce the deficit. The winger collected Kotaro Matsushima’s pass and sped away to the corner.

The went straight down the field and extended their lead. Mapimpi burst away from Matsushima for his second, 29-8.

The Sharks had upped the tempo and the game was opening up in the final quarter.

Jacques Vermeulen and Wimpie van der Walt traded scores before Sbu Nkosi and Cameron Wright got on the scoresheet.

Tupou crossed late on, but his try was academic.

Final score: Sharks 50 (24) Sunwolves 22 (3)


Tries – Mapimpi (2), Van der Merwe, Mtembu, Vermeulen, Nkosi, Wright
Pen – Du Preez
Con – Du Preez (5), Bosch
Drop –
Cards –

Tries – Lemeki, Van der Walt, Tupou
Pen – Tatekawa
Con – Matsushima, Nakamura
Drop –
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee: Federico Anselmi
Assistant Ref 1: Egon Seconds
Assistant Ref 2: Archie Sehlako
TMO: Shaun Veldsman



15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Sibusiso Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Louis Schreuder, 8 Lubabalo Mtembu, 7 Jacques Vermeulen, 6 Wian Vosloo, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Ruan Botha (captain), 3 John-Hubert Meyer, 2 Armand van der Merwe, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.

Replacements: 16 Mahlatse Ralepelle, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 Ross Geldenhuys, 19 Gideon Koegelenberg, 20 Keegan Daniel, 21 Cameron Wright, 22 Marius Louw, 23 Lwazi Mvovo.


15 Kotaro Matsushima, 14 Lomano Lemeki, 13 Sione Teaupa, 12 Michael Little, 11 William Tupou, 10 Harumichi Tatekawa, 9 Keisuke Uchida, 8 Willem Britz (captain), 7 Yoshitaka Tokunaga, 6 Michael Leitch, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4 Kazuki Himeno, 3 Takuma Asahara, 2 Yusuke Niwai, 1 Craig Millar.

Replacements: 16 Atsushi Sakate, 17 Shintaro Ishihara, 18 Hencus van Wyk, 19 Wimpie van der Walt, 20 Pieter Labuschagne, 21 Yutaka Nagare, 22 Ryoto Nakamura, 23 Robbie Robinson.

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