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Stormers scramble past brave Lions to top table


Colin Bryden


De Kock Steenkamp and Duane Vermeulen of the Stormers run into Warren Whiteley of the Lions.

De Kock Steenkamp and Duane Vermeulen of the Stormers run into Warren Whiteley of the Lions. Photo: Getty Images

JOHANNESBURG: The Stormers went to the top of the Super Rugby championship table when they beat the Lions 24-19 at Coca-Cola Park on Saturday.


It was the fourth win in as many matches for the Cape Town-based team, who are the only unbeaten side in the competition, but they were made to struggle by the injury-ravaged but spirited Lions.

The Stormers went ahead after 72 seconds when hooker Tiaan Liebenberg scored a try after a multi-phase movement that started when the visitors stole the ball from the kick-off.

It seemed likely to be an easy night for the 2011 semi-finalists when Springbok wing Bryan Habana scored his 50th try in the competition after 14 minutes.

They stretched the lead to 18-0 after 20 minutes with two penalties by full-back Joe Pietersen -- but the Lions dominated the rest of the match.

"We played rugby for 30 minutes, then for 50 minutes the Lions played better than us," admitted Stormers captain and centre Jean de Villiers.

Despite struggling to win set-piece ball, the Lions competed ferociously in broken play, kept the ball in hand and forced the Stormers to make more than 100 tackles.

A try by scrum-half Tian Meyer reduced the deficit to 11 points at half-time and the Lions got within two points with three penalty goals by fly-half Butch James after the break.

After 48 minutes without scoring, the Stormers got some breathing space when Pietersen landed a penalty 12 minutes from time and he ensured a victory for the visitors with a long-range goal a minute from the end, before Lions wing Andries Coetzee dropped a goal after the final hooter to give his side a bonus point.

The Lions had been decimated by injuries in the early weeks of the season and were forced into fielding an inexperienced front row and a second-string half-back pairing.

Habana's try came when the Lions lost a scrum on their own put-in. But the young Lions showed plenty of commitment and determination as they fought their way back into the match.

De Villiers said the Stormers would have to improve when they play Northern Bulls, who are just one point behind, in Cape Town next Saturday.

"There is a lot of work to be done before next week," he said.

STORMERS 24 (Bryan Habana, Tiaan Liebenberg tries Joe Pietersen con 4 pens) bt LIONS 19 (Tian Meyer try Butch James con 3 pens Andries Coetzee drop goal) at Ellis Park. Referee: Glen Jackson.


HuffPost Australia

Rugby World Cup 2015

Round 1
Sat, 19 SepTimes shown AEST
ENG 35vs FJI 11 Report Stats
TGA 10vs GEO 17 Report Stats
IRE 50vs CAN 7 Report Stats
Sun, 20 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 32vs JPN 34 Report Stats
FRA 32vs ITA 10 Report Stats
SAM 25vs USA 16 Report Stats
WAL 54vs URU 9 Report Stats
Mon, 21 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 26vs ARG 16 Report Stats
Wed, 23 SepTimes shown AEST
SCO 45vs JPN 10 Report Stats
Thu, 24 SepTimes shown AEST
AUS 28vs FJI 13 Report Stats
FRA 38vs ROM 11 Report Stats
Fri, 25 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 58vs NAM 14 Report Stats
Sat, 26 SepTimes shown AEST
ARG 54vs GEO 9 Report Stats
ITA 23vs CAN 18 Report Stats
Sun, 27 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 46vs SAM 6 Report Stats
ENG 25vs WAL 28 Report Stats
AUS 65vs URU 3 Report Stats
SCO 39vs USA 16 Report Stats
Mon, 28 SepTimes shown AEST
IRE 44vs ROM 10 Report Stats
Wed, 30 SepTimes shown AEST
TGA 35vs NAM 21 Report Stats
Fri, 02 OctTimes shown AEST
WAL 23vs FJI 13 Report Stats
FRA 41vs CAN 18 Report Stats
Sat, 03 OctTimes shown AEST
NZL 43vs GEO 10 Report Stats
SAM 5vs JPN 26 Report Stats
Sun, 04 OctTimes shown AEST
SAF 34vs SCO 16 Report Stats
ENG 13vs AUS 33 Report Stats
Mon, 05 OctTimes shown AEDT
ARG 45vs TGA 16 Report Stats
IRE 16vs ITA 9 Report Stats
Wed, 07 OctTimes shown AEDT
CAN 15vs ROM 17 Report Stats
FJI 47vs URU 15 Report Stats
Thu, 08 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 64vs USA 0 Report Stats
NAM 16vs GEO 17 Stats
Sat, 10 OctTimes shown AEDT
NZL 0vs TGA 0 06:00St James' Park
Sun, 11 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAM 0vs SCO 0 00:30St James' Park
AUS 0vs WAL 0 02:45Twic
ENG 0vs URU 0 06:00Manch
ARG 0vs NAM 0 22:00Leicester City Stadium
Mon, 12 OctTimes shown AEDT
ITA 0vs ROM 0 00:30Sand
FRA 0vs IRE 0 02:45MilS
USA 0vs JPN 0 06:00Kholm
View All Fixtures
Round 2
Sun, 18 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 0vs RUpA 0 02:00Twic
WinC 0vs RUpD 0 06:00MilS
WinD 0vs RUpC 0 23:00MilS
Mon, 19 OctTimes shown AEDT
WinA 0vs RUpB 0 02:00Twic
Sun, 25 OctTimes shown AEDT
WQF1 0vs WQF2 0 02:00Twic
Mon, 26 OctTimes shown AEDT
WQF3 0vs WQF4 0 03:00Twic
Sat, 31 OctTimes shown AEDT
LSF1 0vs LSF2 0 07:00The Stadium, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
Sun, 01 NovTimes shown AEDT
WSF1 0vs WSF2 0 03:00Twic
View All Fixtures
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Australia 3 3 0 0 97 13
Wales 3 3 0 0 58 13
England 3 1 2 0 1 6
Fiji 4 1 3 0 -17 5
Uruguay 3 0 3 0 -139 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
South Africa 4 3 1 0 120 16
Scotland 3 2 1 0 40 10
Japan 3 2 1 0 -12 8
Samoa 3 1 2 0 -52 4
USA 3 0 3 0 -96 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
New Zealand 3 3 0 0 87 14
Argentina 3 2 1 0 64 10
Georgia 4 2 2 0 -70 8
Tonga 3 1 2 0 -22 6
Namibia 3 0 3 0 -59 1
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Ireland 3 3 0 0 84 14
France 3 3 0 0 72 14
Italy 3 1 2 0 -24 5
Romania 3 1 2 0 -59 4
Canada 4 0 4 0 -73 2
View all

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