About this weekend’s cat fight
September 17, 2012 in Uncategorized
It was great to watch a Lions team using their chances and scoring points whenever the opportunity arose, unlike during Super Rugby when they could hardly buy a try. Winning by four tries to two might seem like a convincing win but credit must go to the Lions’ defence that kept numerous attacks by the Cheetahs away from the tryline making 132 tackles to 44 in the process.
While the Lions scrums were absolutely awesome, virtually annihilating the Cheetahs scrums, they struggled to get and retain possession in the rucks and mauls. Normally the lack of possession and territory will cost a team the match but the Lions were able to convert possession into points with regularity through great goal kicking by Jantjies and a number of well-worked tries.
Franco van der Merwe kept on looking for intercepts a la Habana after the first one resulted in an easy try but the other three tries were pure magic, from Jantjies’s inside offload to Combrinck to Lionel Mapoe breaking through to put Deon Helberg away to Baywatch’s one-handed offload to Combrinck.
I must say, though, the last TMO decision on the Cheetahs “try” was a bit weird as it seemed as if the pass was flat rather than forward unless it was by millimeters. I understand this whole hands going forward thing that the TMO was looking at but the decision came across as a bit pedantic, unlike Rhule’s “try” where the pass was obviously forward.
Marcel van der Merwe probably made history as the first player to score two tries in a match in different colour jerseys. And what can one say about the youngster, Raymond Rhule? Pure talent.
It was also great to see Kevin de Klerk sitting on the bench with the players (after his public lambasting of the Cheetahs president his invitation to the Presidents box was probably withdrawn ).
Going forward the Lions need to sort out their inability to get enough possession as this may just cost them in a crucial match and put paid to their ambition of retaining the Currie Cup.
Coming up this weekend, the Sharks’ attempt to start winning in Joburg again. I wonder if Lambie will get permission from HM to get some game time as he sure isn’t getting any at the Boks.