Golden Lions also lose in Currie Cup
A miserable weekend for the Golden Lions was completed when the Currie Cup team crashed 54-22 at neighbours Blue Bulls in a third round match. The Johannesburg-based outfit lost the Super Rugby final to New Zealand visitors Canterbury Crusaders Saturday after flanker Kwagga Smith was red-carded before half-time.
And several hours later the Lions reserves fared disastrously at Loftus Versfeld stadium in Pretoria, despite playing against only 13 opponents at one stage of the opening half. Bulls outscored Lions by eight tries to four although they had three players, lock Irne Herbst, hooker Jan-Henning Campher and winger Kefentse Mahlo, sin-binned at various stages.
The home team speedily built a 21-point lead, conceded three tries when numerically depleted, then recovered to hold a 28-15 advantage by half-time. Bulls dominated the second half and man-of-the-match award winner and prop Pierre Schoeman scored the final try by burrowing over the line.
Another scorer for the winners was full-back Warrick Gelant, who received his first Springboks squad call-up this weekend, for a Rugby Championship Test against Argentina. Lions’ failings were not confined to scoring fewer tries than the Bulls-fly-half Shaun Reynolds added the extra points to only one of the four.
Bulls used fly-half Tony Jantjies (five) and substitute backs JT Jackson and Tinus de Beer (one each) to successfully convert seven of their eight tries. The bonus-point triumph lifted the Bulls into a three-way tie for top place with defending champions Free State Cheetahs, who had a bye, and the Sharks.