Lions still have plenty to fix up
NEXT STEP: BIGGER CHALLENGE AS STORMERS VISIT JOBURG
They might still be a work in progress, but the Lions will need to take a big step up before hosting the unbeaten Stormers in their Super Rugby clash this weekend, coach Cash van Rooyen admits.
The Lions scored their first win by struggling past the Reds with a 27-20 victory at a soaked Ellis Park over the weekend, but there was concern about their scrum being on the back foot for much of the game.
“Against the Stormers we need to be better on attack, improve our defence and be better in our set- pieces,” Van Rooyen said.
“It would be nice though to just have a normal week, which wasn’t the case last week when we had to return from Argentina.”
There was some concern over the concussion of flank Vincent Tshituka, but the Lions could be boosted this week by the introduction of big Willem Alberts.
“We will have a look at Willem on Monday (today) and Tuesday, and if he comes into consideration he will be able to add much physicality and experience,” Van Rooyen said.
The big highlight of the game was the brace of tries scored by right wing Tyrone Green, who produced a spark when it was needed most.
“Tyrone had a good game and a few others, but he is a special player and when he gets the ball he needs a bit of time and space, but when he gets possession he definitely adds a spark,” Van Rooyen said.
The stop-start nature of the game saw the Lions scoring four tries to two, but it was only a 68th minute try by wing Courtnall Skosan and a 75th minute penalty by captain Elton Jantjies which put daylight between the two sides.
“The Reds are a good set-piece team and they also scrummed very well the previous week against the Brumbies, but we definitely have to fix some areas,” Van Rooyen admitted.
“The conditions definitely played a role and the Reds are a team that come hard at you at the breakdown, I don’t think it’s really an understanding issue between player and coach, but I think a lot of them haven’t played together previously.”
OVER THE WHITEWASH. Lions wing Tyrone Green celebrates after scoring a try against the Reds in their Super Rugby match at Ellis Park on Saturday.