IN OTHER LIONS NEWS
Industry changes push player severance
09 November 2018
Due to the changes in the Rugby Industry whereby the decision to reduce professional players has been instigated the Lions Rugby Company (Pty) Ltd. has been involuntarily required to offer mutual severance packages to contracted players.
Tel (011) 402-2960
29-10-18 Lions victorious U/21 Coach gets full-time call-up to Junior Boks
Bafana Nhleko, head coach of the victorious Xerox Golden Lions Under 21 side that won the SA Under 21 Championship at Newlands on Saturday, will join the SA Rugby coaching ranks as assistant coach to the Junior Springboks.
The Cubs beat the Vodacom Blue Bulls Under 21's in emphatic style, taking the trophy by 58-24.
The Lions style of play and extreme fitness again made its mark in the final and it is this brand of rugby that Bafana Nhleko, head coach of the Xerox Golden Lions, will take to SA Rugby as he joins them at the end of the year.
"We are very proud of our juniors and happy to see one of our top coaches, Bafana, getting recognition from SA Rugby for his hard work with our juniors. I believe there is no doubt that he will take the Lions way of play further and ensure that more of our juniors get noticed at higher levels," said Rudolf Straeuli, CEO of Lions Rugby Company.
The team bid farewell to their Attack Coach Herkie Kruger after the semi-final at Emirates Airline Park a week ago when the Cubs beating the Free State Cheetahs to secure a spot in the final. Kruger has joined the Ministry full-time but will stay involved.
'The Lions have always invested in top class coaches and this victory is testament to that. It is good that the Lions can bolster SA Rugby with quality coaches like Nhleko."
Nhleko started his coaching career at the Lions in 2013 when he was appointed as the Under 19 Head Coach. He also coached the unions Super Sport Challenge team in 2016 and 2017 while he acted as defence coach of the Under 21 side in the same years.
Nhleko thanked the Lions for their role in his growth as a coach and said he was looking forward to the next chapter in coaching career.
Photo by: Lions Rugby Company/Monique Naude
27-10-18 Lions cubs thrash Bulls
Lion Cubs thrash Bulls
27 October 2018
The Xerox Under 21 Lions Cubs scored a run-away 58-24 victory over their Blue Bulls counterparts at Newlands on Saturday to be crowned the national champions at this age group.
A blitz in the first 28 minutes, which saw them score 27 unanswered points followed by 19 points in the final ten minutes, was too much for the gallant Bulls who fought back gallantly during the middle of the game. The Lions proved to be a team of real thoroughbreds, with very few weaknesses and they stuck to their guns to score six tries in the final.
If one Cub has to be mentioned it was the dead-eye-dick fullback Jeanluc Cilliers, who scored 28 points – four more than the entire Bulls team – in a typical finals approach. He kept the score board ticking over to keep his side in front at a stage when the Bulls pressed hard. Lock Handré Stassen and the nimble-footed Manie Libbok did eventually make a big difference and perhaps they should have started. To mention more Lions apart from Cilliers would be unfair and all of them were superstars.
Gianni Lombard kicked the proceedings off with an intercept near his own '25' and took play to close to the Bulls goal-line which set up Len Massyn’s score. Thereafter Tyrone Green scored after a beautiful inside pass and when Lombard again dummied inside he ran straight through. Big Asenathi Nthlabakanye also made his presence felt and he scored in his Under 21 debut and it is unthinkable that he qualifies for two more seasons at this level. Hats off to coach Bafana Nhleko and his coaching staff.
Lions Under 21s: Tries: Len Massyn, Tyrone Green, Gianni Lombard, Asenathi Nthlabakanye, Shaun Williams, Wandisile Simelane. Conversions: Jeanluc Cilliers (5). Penalties: Cilliers (6).
13-10-2018 Xerox Golden Lions book Currie Cup semi-final spot
13 October 2018
Xerox Golden Lions book Currie Cup semi-final spot
The Xerox Golden Lions beat the iCOLLEGE Pumas 33-21 (halftime 21-14) with a bonus point, in their Currie Cup Premier Division match at Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit on Friday.
As a result of the five-try outcome, the Lions moved into third position on the table tied with the second-placed Sharks, but slightly behind on points difference.
The visitors got off to a quick start as centre Lionel Mapoe intercepted a poor pass from scrumhalf Stefan Ungerer in the second minute and sprinted through to score under the posts untouched. Jantjies added the extra two points.
Three minutes later it was Devon Williams who timed his run into the Pumas back line to perfection to collect the final pass and score for flyhalf Chris Smith to convert and level the scores. The Lions were back in front when hooker Corne Fourie scored from a rolling maul and Jantjies was again on target from the kicking tee.
The Lions, however, were reduced to 14 men on the half hour when centre Howard Mnisi was yellow carded for cynical play.
The Pumas took advantage of the numerical advantage and after a long period of sustained pressure it was their No 8 Francois Kleinhans who crashed over for the score. But once again, the Lions put their noses ahead when Mapoe displayed great feet to lay off to left wing Courtnall Skosan to score. Jantjies’s conversion made it 21-14.
The Pumas were dealt a blow just before halftime when try-scorer Kleinhans was sin-binned and just before he returned after the break, the Lions capitalised when Skosan got in for his second try which secured the bonus point.
The Lions were starting to stamp their authority on the game and this became even more evident when Fourie bundled his way over for his second try of the night on the hour.
Jantjies added the extras and the Lions had one foot in the semifinals at 33-14.
But the Pumas were not about to throw in the towel and came back at the visitors with centre Ryan Nell scoring their third try with 12 minutes remaining.
XEROX GOLDEN LIONS – Tries: Lionel Mapoe, Corne Fourie (2), Courtnall Skosan (2) Conversions: Elton Jantjies (4)
Xerox Golden Lions u21 & u19 teams take on the Cell C Sharks
Xerox Golden Lions U21 & U19 teams take on the Cell C Sharks
04 October 2018
Catch all the action when the Xerox Golden Lions U21 and U19 teams take on the Cell C Sharks at Emirates Airline Park on Friday, 5 October 2018.
22-08-18 Lions go down in wet Durban
Photo by Howard Cleland
The Cell C Sharks retained their unbeaten status in the Currie Cup when they secured a 37-21 win over the Xerox Golden Lions in Durban on Saturday. The home side dominated for long periods although it took them some time to get going as wet weather made handling and underfoot conditions difficult. They eventually outscored the Golden Lions by four tries to three and Robert du Preez finished with a 17-point haul courtesy of four conversions and three penalties.
The Sharks opened the scoring in the third minute via a Robert du Preez penalty but the visitors struck back in the eighth minute when Sylvian Mahuza had an easy run-in for the opening try after gathering a perfectly weighted cross-field kick from Shaun Reynolds.
Reynolds added the extras but that would be the last time the visitors would trouble the scorers during the opening period as the Sharks dominated the rest of the half
The Lions were more competitive after the break and on the hour-mark James Venter scored their second try off the back of a lineout drive deep inside Sharks territory. In the 75th minute, Wandisile Simelane did well to boot the ball up field and beat Sbu Nkosi in a foot race before diving on the ball behind the home side's try line to add some respectability to the final score.
Tries: Sylvian Mahuza, James Venter, Wandisile Simelane
Conversions: Shaun Reynolds (3)
15-08-18 WP end Lions unbeaten run
WP end Lion's unbeaten run
15 September 2018
Western Province beat the Golden Lions 65-36 in a high scoring Currie Cup match at Ellis Park on Saturday afternoon, to maintain their unbeaten run in the competition.
The North/South derby saw two of the competition's unbeaten sides come up against each other in a mouth-watering clash at Ellis Park.
The Lions have been in scintillating form this season with three wins from three, but Province had other ideas as they completely blew the home side out of the water in the first half with some skilful and efficient rugby.
With barely a minute on the clock, Province struck first blood with a try through Springbok Dillyn Leyds who benefited from a brilliant break down in the middle, from South African Under-20 eighth-man Juarno Augustus. SP Marais added the extras before he was on the kicking tee again to stretch their lead through a penalty kick.
The Lions hit back almost immediately, when Lionel Mapoe - who could well see himself back in the Springbok frame in the coming weeks due to injuries sustained to Lukhanyo Am and Damian de Allende - cut through the middle before Shaun Reynolds burrowed his way over the line. Reynolds added a penalty to narrow the score to three points at 13-10, but those proved to be the Lions final points of the first half as a flurry of Province tries followed.
Province had a commanding 39-10 lead at the break. The second half was as frenetic as the first, as tries simply didn't dry up for either side.
Replacement hooker Pieter Jansen and Hacjivah Dayimani scored for the home side to bring the scores closer. WP then scored two more tries to bury the game and condemn the Lions to their first Currie Cup defeat of the season.
13-09-18 Xerox Golden Lions take on DHL Western Province
The Lions Rugby Company will field three strong teams on Saturday 15 September when the Xerox Golden Lions Under 19, Under 21 and senior sides host the DHL Western Province sides.
Xerox Golden Lions coach Ivan van Rooyen made three changes, one positional, to the side that will host Western Province in the DirectAxis and Nashua Currie Cup at Emirates Airline Park on Saturday.
In the front row Corne Fourie returns at hooker, Andries Coetzee is back at full-back after a week of rest and Sylvian Mahuza returns to wing in the place of the injured Madosh Tambwe (dislocated ankle).
The Lions juniors will look to continue their winning ways after a successful trip to Loftus in Pretoria last week.
Under 19 captain Cal Smid, Under 21 captain Wayne van der Bank and senior captain Marvin Orie will lead their sides in their respective encounters.
With sunny weather forecasted families are invited to enjoy a full day of rugby at Emirates Airline Park.
Gates open at 10:30 and this is also the kick-off time for the Xerox Golden Lions Under 19 side. This is followed by the Under 21 teams (12:30) and the main kick-off is at 15:00.
01-09-18 Lions climb to the top of the Currie Cup log
Shaun Reynolds was once again the Xerox Golden Lions’ general at Emirates Airline Park on Saturday, scoring 22 points in their 47-14 victory over the Toyota Free State Cheetahs.
Reynold's haul helped him to remain the top scorer in the Currie Cup competition, with an average of nearly 19 points per game.
The Lions led 33-0 at the break and a record win was on the cards.
Sylvian Mahuza and Reynolds both scored a brace in that period.
The Lions went to sleep for half an hour in a cold second half until Hacjivah Dayimani and Howard Mnisi scored in the last ten minutes.
Dayimani is also top of the pops on the try scorer's list with his five tries.
Scorers: Golden Lions
Tries: Mahuza 2, Reynolds 2, Orie, Mnisi, Dayimani
Conversions: Reynolds 6
Free State Cheetahs
Tries: Fouche, Paige
Conversions: Fouche 2
Lions triumph in CC opener
24 August 2018
The Xerox Golden Lions triumphed by 62-41 over Tafel Lager Griquas at Emirates Airline Park on Friday evening after trailing 19-20 at halftime.
The Lions scored nine tries to the five from the galant but ultimately outclassed Griquas.
Winger Courtnall Skosan collected a hat-trick of tries for the home side with captain Ross Cronje, Sylvian Mahuza, Len Massyn, Wandile Simelane, Hacjivah Dayimani (2) also adding their names to the scoresheet.
Number 10 Shaun Reynolds added the remainder of the points with seven conversions and a penalty to douse the fire from the visitors who looked able to contain and even dominate the home side during the first 40 minutes.
Griquas' tries came from Andre Starts, Khwezilokusa Mkhafu, Wilmar Arnoldi, Kyle Steyn, AJ Coertzen as forwards and backs combined in a series of slick movements before finally running out of steam in the final quarter.
Pivot moved to 15 – Lions U19's to face the Sharks
15 August 2018
The Xerox Golden Lions Under 19 head coach Wessel Roux has moved his pivot Christian Humphries to fullback for Saturday’s Under 19 clash in Durban against the Sharks with Jonathan Viljoen getting his first start at ten in the competition.
The pocket-rocket David Cary finds himself on the bench along with Janco van Heyningen, who returns from injury and both should have a big impact later in the game.
Outside centre Edwin Ludick also returns to partner Yanga Hlalu in midfield.
The Lions will, however, travel to Durban without regular hooker Dameon Venter, who is unavailable and Tiaan Drotskie gets a deserved start.
Also in the mix for the first time this season is tighthead JW Meades, who starts from the bench.
The Cubs have a a richness of props in the squad with Asenathi Ntlabakanye and Nkosikona Masuku in the starting XV and Meades and Keagan Glade on the bench.
Lions versus Sharks: Christian Humphries; Njabulo Mjara, Edmund Ludick, Yanga Hlalu, Kennedy Mpeku; Jonathan Viljoen, Tinus Combrink; Cal Smid, Mandisi Mthiyane, Mark Snyman, Kwagga van Niekerk, Hendrik Smit/Ruben Kotzé, Asenathi Ntlabakanye, Tiaan Drotskie, Nkosikona Masuku.
Reserves: Gustav de Jager, JW Meades, Keagan Glade, Ruben Kotzé/Hendrik Smit, Ziyanda Msipha, Hlumelo Ndudula, Janco van Heyningen, David Cary, Brendon Buitendag.