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Lions 8 (3) vs Sharks 16 (16)

Lions lose another at home

Sharks continue their unbeaten run

The Sharks beat the Lions 16-8 at Ellis Park on Saturday, both teams scoring only one try and the difference between the teams three penalties from Rory Kockott. Rain started falling 20 minutes into the game, but both teams still ran the ball and it didn't look like the rain affected play too much. Both teams had plenty more scoring opportunities, and need to work on finishing those chances.

Francois Steyn started the match from the halfway line and immediately made a mistake by kicking it out on the full, giving the Lions a scrum on the halfway line.

The teams spent the 1st five minutes between the two 22 meter lines, and the first mistake came from the Lions, when Jano Vermaak kicked a box kick and Cobus Grobbelaar chased from an offside position. Rory Kockott added the three points from the penalty to put the Sharks in the early lead.

The Lions got a penalty of their own just two minutes later when the Sharks went offside, this on the Sharks ten meter line, and Jaco van Schalkwyk equalled the scores with the penalty.

13 minutes into the game the Lions set up a great chance when Cobus Grobbelaar stole a ball at the breakdown where Pietersen got tackled after breaking inside, the Lions kicked the ball behind the defending Sharks players and although Stefan Terblanche got to the ball first, all he could do was run it over the line and give the Lions a five meter lineout. Unfortunately at this lineout Ross Geldenhuys looked like he head-butted Albert van den Berg at a ruck, and he was yellow carded. JC van Rensburg was on for Ross in the scrums during his yellow card.

The Sharks then set up a great attack from their own half, running the ball out to the left with most players in the team handling, and then hitting right again, and the desperate Lions defence just catching them on the Lions try-line, but at the ruck BJ Botha still managed to power over for the try. Kockott's kick went over after hitting the right upright, the Sharks in a 10-3 lead.

21 minutes into the game the Sharks broke the Lions defence again, and got to within 10 meters of the Lions line, where the Lions conceded a penalty at the scrum the Sharks opted for after getting a free kick. Kockott kicked the easy penalty and the Sharks now leading 13-3.

5 minutes later a heavy downpour started, something that could have a bad effect on the handling in the match, which has been okay up to this stage.

32 minutes into the game the Lions were awarded another penalty after a deliberate knock down of the ball at a ruck, but Jaco van Schalkwyk pushed the kick right and the score remained 13-3 for the Sharks.

The Lions were blown for obstruction just before the break, just inside the Sharks half, and Kockott kicked the 51 meter kick for the Sharks to go into a 16-3 lead at the break.

The Lions had an early chance in the second half, Joe van Niekerk ran the ball from the back of the scrum in Sharks territory, and broke through a few tackles, and then the Lions brought the ball to the right, deep inside the Sharks 22, when the ball came out, Jaco van Schalkwyk kicked the ball cross-field, and all Rayno Benjamin had to do was catch the ball and fall over for the try, but he knocked it on, and a great opportunity lost for the Lions.

JC van Rensburg replaced Ross Geldenhuys after the break, and Franco van der Merwe was also on for Mostert now.

Noble conceded a penalty 12 minutes into the 2nd half when he obstructed Terblanche after a kick ahead, but luckily for the Lions Kockott pushed the kick to the right. Jannie Boshoff on for Benjamin at this stage.

18 minutes into the 2nd half Willem Alberts replaced Joe van Niekerk, who had a decent game.

4 minutes later another half chance from nothing for the Lions, Jaco van Schalkwyk kicking a grubber behind the Sharks backline, and Walter Venter managed to get to the ball first, he quickly got back to his feet and got to deep inside the Sharks half where he was tackled before he could find support, and the move broke down.

With just 8 minutes to go in the match the Lions came close to scoring, they broke out of their own 22 with Jannie Boshoff finding a gap, and then the ball went through the hands of a few players, eventually the backline hit right, Jaco Pretorius running for the corner, but he lost the ball in the tackle from Kankowski.

The Lions were now doing all the attacking, camping in the 22 meter area of the Sharks, and eventually Franco van der Merwe went over in the left corner after the Lions put up quite a few phases. Jaco van Schalkwyk missed the kick so the Sharks now leading 16-8. Unfortunately for the Lions time ran out, and that was also the final score.

The scorers:

For the Lions:
Franco van der Merwe 
Jaco van Schalkwyk        

For the Sharks:
BJ Botha                 
Cons: Rory Kockott          
Pens: Rory Kockott(3)          

Yellow card: Ross Geldenhuys(13m)
Red card: none 

Lions: 15 Louis Ludik, 14 Dusty Noble, 13 Jaco Pretorius, 12 Walter Venter, 11 Ryno Benjamin, 10 Jaco van Schalkwyk, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Joe van Niekerk, 7 Ernst Joubert(c), 6 Cobus Grobbelaar, 5 Anton Van Zyl, 4 Gerhard Mostert, 3 Ross Geldenhuys, 2 Willie Wepener, 1 Heinke van der Merwe.
Replacements: 16 Ethienne Reynecke, 17 JC Janse van Rensburg, 18 Franco van der Merwe, 19 Willem Alberts, 20 Chris Jonck, 21 Rudi Vogt, 22 Jannie Boshoff.

Sharks: 15. Stefan Terblanche, 14. Odwa Ndungane, 13. Waylon Murray, 12. Bradley Barritt, 11. JP Pietersen, 10. Francois Steyn, 9. Rory Kockott, 8. Ryan Kankowski, 7. Jacques Botes, 6. Keegan Daniel, 5. Johan Muller(c), 4. Albert van den Berg, 3. BJ Botha, 2. Bismarck du Plessis, 1. Tendai Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16. Craig Burden, 17. Jannie du Plessis, 18. AJ Venter, 19. Jean Deysel, 20. Ruan Pienaar, 21. Frederic Michalak, 22. Adrian Jacobs.  

Referee: Mark Lawrence (SA) 
Touch judges: Joey Salmans (SA) and Francois Veldsman (SA)
TV Match Official:
Shaun Veldsman (SA)

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