SARugbymag.co.za looks at the past weekend’s English Premiership, Pro14 and French Top 14 matches involving South African players.
– Gloucester thumped the Newcastle Falcons 29-7 away at Kingston Park. Ruan Ackermann played eighthman for Gloucester, who are now fifth in the standings. Hooker Kyle Cooper played for the ninth-placed Falcons.
– Hooker Michael van Vuuren and his Bath teammates recorded a resounding 38-14 victory over Harlequins at the Rec. Bath are third and Quins eighth on the log.
– The Worcester Warriors, featuring scrumhalf Francois Hougaard, No 8 Gerrit-Jan van Velze, tighthead Nick Schonert, hooker Kurt Haupt and wing Dean Hammond, pulled off a stunning 31-27 bonus-point win over the Leicester Tigers at Welford Road. Tighthead prop Pat Cilliers started for the Tigers.
– Captain Jono Ross, Josh Strauss, Faf de Klerk and Rohan Janse van Rensburg all turned out for the Sale Sharks in their enthralling 18-15 victory over the Northampton Saints. Janse van Rensburg made his debut for the club off the bench with a 28-minute cameo. But it was his former Lions teammate De Klerk who stole the show with a 10-point haul (a try, conversion and penalty) to seal the win for Sale. Cobus Reinach started for the Saints and scored a try, but he was replaced by Nic Groom in the 63rd minute. Prop Francois van Wyk was also on Northampton’s bench.
– Nizaam Carr scored the match-winning try as Wasps beat London Irish 17-13. Carr played alongside fullback Willie le Roux, centre Juan de Jongh and hooker Ashley Johnson for Wasps. Johnson also scored a try for the winners. Locks Franco Mostert and Sebastian de Chaves and prop Petrus de Plessis were on duty for London Irish.
– Saracens slumped to a 20-18 defeat at the hands of the Exeter Chiefs at Allianz Park. Brad Barritt, Schalk Burger, Vincent Koch and Schalk Brits were named in Sarries’ starting lineup. Brits burst over the line for a try, but was forced to leave the field with an injury on the stroke of half-time. Flank Don Armand starred for the Chiefs, who extended their lead over Sarries at the top of the table.
– Lock David Bulbring and prop Werner Kruger were influential for the Scarlets, who narrowly beat the Kings 34-30. Kruger scored a crucial try for the visitors.
– Chris Cloete’s Man of the Match performance inspired Munster to a 36-19 bonus-point win over Zebra in Parma. Cloete was joined in the run-on XV by lock Jean Kleyn. Loose forwards Derick Minnie and Johan Meyer, and hooker Luhandré Luus did service for the Italian side.
– The unbeaten Glasgow Warriors forged ahead with a 47-6 thumping of the Ospreys. Wing Hanno Dirksen made his return to action for the Ospreys after a lengthy injury layoff, but it was in a losing cause.
– Hooker Richardt Strauss was selected on the bench for Leinster, who inflicted a 54-10 lashing on the Dragons at RDS Arena. Scrumhalf Sarel Pretorius started for the Dragons, while Brok Harris and Ligtoring Landman were used as impact players.
– The Cardiff Blues, with lock George Earle in their ranks, stunned Connacht 36-30 at Arms Park. Lock Quinn Roux represented Connacht.
– Wing Duhan van der Merwe and lock Anton Bresler turned out for Edinburgh in their 33-13 loss to the Cheetahs. Ex-Lions back Jaco van der Walt made his debut for Edinburgh off the bench.
– A late converted try saw Ulster snatch a 23-22 win against Treviso in Belfast. Centre Louis Ludik was in the winners’ starting team, while his compatriots Rob Herring and Schalk van der Merwe were on the bench. Ex-Bulls lock Irné Herbst played for Treviso.
FRENCH TOP 14
– Robert Ebersohn, Rory Kockott and Jody Jenneker all started for Castres in their 20-19 win over Toulon at the Stade Pierre-Fabre. JP Pietersen started on the left wing for the visitors, with Marcel van der Merwe at tighthead prop and Juandré Kruger coming off the bench for the losing side.
– Bordeaux’s Jandré Marais was in action against his brother Peet Marais’ Brive in a 27-27 draw at the Stade Chanban-Delmas. Johan Snyman played off the bench for Brive.
– Oyonnax fought back to draw 32-32 against Clermont. Francois van der Merwe started for the visitors, while Steven Sykes and James Hall played for Oyannax.
– Paul Jordaan scored a try for La Rochelle as they edged near the top of the table with a 44-14 win against Pau. Lourens Adriaanse came off the bench for Pau just after half-time.
– Agen, featuring scrumhalf Ricky Januarie and replacement centre Johann Sadie pulled themselves away from the bottom of the table with a 29-13 win over Stade Français. Willem Alberts started at eighthman for the visitors, while hooker Craig Burden and prop Gurthrö Steenkamp came off the bench for the away side.
– Flyhalf Pat Lambie kicked three penalties and a conversion to steer Racing 92 past a Montpellier side containing centre Frans Steyn, lock Nicolaas Janse van Rensburg and prop Johannes Jonker, with a 26-0 win. Bernard le Roux featured off the bench for Racing, while Wiaan Liebenberg was on the bench for Montpellier.
– Toulouse brought themselves within five points of the top of the table with a 17-9 win over Lyon. Lock Hendrik Roodt played 80 minutes for Lyon, with former Sharks lock Etienne Oosthuizen featuring off the bench. Cheslin Kolbe played on the left wing for Toulouse, who had Rynhardt Elstadt on the bench.
Compiled by Mariette Adams
Photo: Steve Bardens/Getty Images