Planet Rugby

Stormers grind past spirited Lions

30th June 2012 15:13

Share:

Stormers back Gio Aplon on a run against the Lions

Try-scorer: Gio Aplon

The Stormers moved one step closer to finishing on top of the South African conference after they battled past the Lions 27-17 at Newlands on Saturday.

In what was a spirited effort, the Lions battled for every inch against their conference leaders in a game that saved its entertainment until the end.

Three tries were scored in the final ten minutes in Cape Town - two for the Stormers and one for the Lions - but the hosts fell short of the bonus-point.

It was a lifeless opening in Cape Town as the miserable recent weather was backed up by a dull start that only came to life on the half-hour mark when Gio Aplon went over following an impressive break from Danie Poolman. Poolman was a late call-up after Joe Pietersen pulled out.

Even more worrying news for the Stormers was that original bench option, Bryan Habana, was also ruled out, compounding their injury troubles.

Peter Grant opened the scoring from the tee as early as the fourth minute though after Lions scrum-half Tian Meyer was penalised for being offside. The Stormers knew that kicks and not tries would be fine for them as they looked to consolodate their position ahead of the Bulls at the summit of the South African conference.

Elton Jantjies did respond in the 24th minute with his second attempt as fans struggled to get excited by what was unfolding in front of them. It was far from tournament-winning form.

They would find their feet and voice six minutes later though when full-back Aplon was put over the line by fly-half Grant, who had only just pushed his side back in front with his second shot at goal. His third would be the extras to Aplon's try, making it 13-3 at half-time.

Just ahead of the break Stormers head coach Allister Coetzee suffered further disruption to his team when wing Poolman was forced off the field and replaced by Marcel Branche.

When the teams returned, the Lions absorbed the initial pressure but once they managed to break out of their half they caught the Stormers napping around the fringe of a breakdown play and skipper Josh Strauss scrambled through for a try, which Jantjies easily converted.

The Lions were fired up but in their eagerness to up their tempo, errors crept into their game and the Stormers managed to take the initiative, and they might have added a second try but busy full-back Aplon was collared on the whitewash with a team-mate on his outside.

With fifteen minutes remaining, the Lions threatened to turn the match on its head when they made several charges at the try-line, but a mixture of sound defence and poor options left them empty handed, and instead the Stormers bounced back in fine style with late tries.

Jebb Sinclair and Gerhard van den Heever were the scorers before Lions lock Franco van der Merwe scored to cut the gap in their first game without suspended boss John Mitchell.

The scorers:

For Stormers:
Tries: Aplon, Sinclair, Van den Heever
Con: Grant 3
Pen: Grant 2

For Lions:
Tries: Strauss, Van der Merwe
Con: Jantjies 2
Pen: Jantjies

Stormers: 15 Gio Aplon, 14 Gerhard van den Heever, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Jean de Villiers (c), 11 Danie Poolman, 10 Peter Grant, 9 Dewaldt Duvenage, 8 Siya Kolisi, 7 Don Armand, 6 Tyrone Holmes, 5 Andries Bekker, 4 De Kock Steenkamp, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Deon Fourie, 1 Deon Carstens.
Replacements: 16 Tiaan Liebenberg, 17 Brok Harris, 18 Quinn Roux, 19 Jebb Sinclair, 20 Louis Schrueder, 21 Burton Francis, 22 Marcel Brache.

Lions: 15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Deon van Rensburg, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Butch James, 11 Anthonie Volminck, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Tian Meyer, 8 Joshua Strauss (c), 7 Grant Hattingh, 6 Derick Minnie, 5 Franco van der Merwe, 4 Hendrik Roodt, 3 Jacobie Adriaanse, 2 Callie Visagie, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Replacements: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Ruaan Dreyer, 18 Ruan Botha, 19 Jaco Kriel, 20 Michael Bondesio, 21 Waylon Murray, 22 Ruan Combrinck.

Referee: Mark Lawrence (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Francisco Pastrana (Argentina), Jason Jaftha (South Africa)
TMO: Gerrie Coetzee (South Africa)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath vs HarlequinsBath vs Harlequins Preview
Saturday , November 29
Leicester Tigers vs WaspsLeicester Tigers vs Wasps Preview
Exeter vs Saracens16:30
Sunday , November 30
London Irish vs Gloucester13:00
London Welsh vs Northampton14:30
Newcastle Falcons vs Sale SharksNewcastle Falcons vs Sale Sharks Preview
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
International Match
Saturday , November 29
Wales vs South AfricaWales vs South Africa Preview
England vs AustraliaEngland vs Australia Preview
More International Match fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , November 28
Munster vs UlsterMunster vs Ulster Preview
Cardiff Blues vs TrevisoCardiff Blues vs Treviso Preview
Saturday , November 29
Zebre vs Edinburgh15:00
Leinster vs Ospreys17:15
Connacht vs Scarlets19:30
Sunday , November 30
Glasgow Warriors vs Dragons16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Thursday , December 4
La Rochelle vs Exeter19:45
More European Rugby Challenge Cup fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , November 29
Toulon vs Clermont AuvergneToulon vs Clermont Auvergne Preview
Oyonnax vs Bordeaux-Begles18:30
Lyon vs Montpellier18:30
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:30
Castres vs Racing Metro Paris18:30
Toulouse vs Grenoble20:45
Sunday , November 30
Stade Francais vs Brive18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 23
Saracens 24 - 31 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Welsh 5 - 26 Leicester TigersLondon Welsh vs Leicester Tigers Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Georgia 35 - 24 JapanGeorgia vs Japan Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Treviso 24 - 24 LeinsterTreviso vs Leinster Report
Edinburgh 28 - 13 Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
Exeter 31 - 15 WaspsExeter vs Wasps Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Italy 6 - 22 South AfricaItaly vs South Africa Report
England 28 - 9 SamoaEngland vs Samoa Report
France 13 - 18 ArgentinaFrance vs Argentina Report
Wales 16 - 34 New ZealandWales vs New Zealand Report
Scotland 37 - 12 TongaScotland vs Tonga Report
Ireland 26 - 23 AustraliaIreland vs Australia Report
Romania 18 - 9 CanadaRomania vs Canada Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 21
Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale SharksHarlequins vs Sale Sharks Report
Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 GloucesterNewcastle Falcons vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Fiji 20 - 14 USAFiji vs USA Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Dragons 12 - 38 MunsterDragons vs Munster Report
Ulster 25 - 16 OspreysUlster vs Ospreys Report
Connacht 43 - 3 ZebreConnacht vs Zebre Report
Scarlets 19 - 9 Glasgow WarriorsScarlets vs Glasgow Warriors Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 16
Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 SaracensLeicester Tigers vs Saracens Report
Wasps 71 - 7 London WelshWasps vs London Welsh Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Ireland 49 - 7 GeorgiaIreland vs Georgia Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 15
Sale Sharks 36 - 8 London IrishSale Sharks vs London Irish Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton830
2Exeter828
3Bath828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821