SARugbymag.co.za looks at the past weekend’s English Premiership, Pro14, French Top 14 and Japanese Top League matches involving South African players.
– The Worcester Warriors, with Francois Hougaard and Gerrit-Jan van Velze, moved 10 points clear of the bottom of the table with a 23-6 win over London Irish, who included prop Petrus du Plessis and lock Franco van der Merwe in their starting XV. Sebastian de Chaves came off the bench for London Irish.
– Josh Strauss’ try helped Sale to a 32-9 win against a Bath side which included Francois Louw in their starting XV. Rohan Janse van Rensburg and Faf de Klerk started for Sale.
– The Newcastle Falcons beat Harlequins 11-10 to win their fourth game in a row in all competitions. Former Sharks hooker Kyle Cooper started for Newcastle.
– Cobus Reinach came off the bench to score a consolation try for the Northampton Saints in their 35-14 loss to the Exeter Chiefs. Don Armand started for Exeter, while Nic Groom started at scrumhalf for Northampton. Prop Francois van Wyk also came off the bench for the Saints but was yellow-carded in the 70th minute.
– Willie le Roux opened the scoring as Wasps produced a powerful second-half performance to beat Gloucester 49-24. Juan de Jongh and Nizaam Carr started for Wasps, with Ashley Johnsoncoming off the bench for the winning side. Ruan Ackermann played the full match for Gloucester.
– Saracens broke their seven-match losing run with a 29-17 win against the Leicester Tigers. Vincent Koch and Schalk Burger both came off the bench for Saracens.
– Flank Braam Steyn and his Treviso teammates defeated Italian rivals Zebre 27-14. Flank Johan Meyer and Derick Minnie represented Zebre, with Meyer picking up a red card in the 46th minute for kicking an opponent.
– Edinburgh, with wing Duhan van der Merwe, flyhalf Jaco van der Walt and No 8 Cornell du Preez in their starting lineup, registered a stunning 18-17 upset win over the Glasgow Warriors. The result ended the Warriors’ 10-match winning streak in the competition.
– Connacht lashed Ulster 44-16 in their all-Irish encounter. Lock Quinn Roux played for the winners. Centre Louis Ludik, lock Robbie Diack and props Wiehahn Herbst and Schalk van der Merwe did service for Ulster. Ludik was given a yellow card in the second half.
FRENCH TOP 14
– Racing 92 moved level on points with second-placed Montpellier with a 23-19 win against Toulouse. Bernard le Roux started at flank for Racing, who brought Pat Lambie off the bench late on in the match. Cheslin Kolbe and Rynhardt Elstadt started for Toulouse.
– Agen claimed a crucial 27-13 victory over relegation rivals Brive. Johann Sadie scored the opening try for Agen, who named Ricky Januarie in their starting XV. Peet Marais started for Brive, who included Jan Uys and Petrus Hauman on the bench.
– Bordeaux produced the shock result of the weekend as they beat leaders La Rochelle 29-19. Juandré Marais started for Bordeaux.
– Montpellier, with Frans Steyn at flyhalf, powered to a 38-17 win against Lyon. Jacques du Plessis, Paul Willemse, Johannes Jonker and Bismarck du Plessis all started for Montpellier. Lyon started with Etienne Oosthuizen at lock, with hooker Deon Fourie and prop Albertus Buckleon the bench.
– JP Pietersen, at outside centre for Toulon, helped his team to an impressive 49-25 win over Oyonnax. Duane Vermeulen started for Toulon with Juandré Kruger on the bench, while Marcel van der Merwe came off the bench and scored a try. Steven Sykes started for Oyonnax, with Bjorn Basson on the bench.
– Scott Spedding’s try for Clermont was in vain as they went down to Pau 22-21. Lourens Adriaanse was named on the bench for Pau, while Flip van der Merwe started for Clermont.
– Castres powered to a bonus-point 28-6 win against Stade Français. Jody Jenneker started for Castres, who had Rory Kockott on the bench. Willem Alberts started at eighthman for Stade.
JAPANESE TOP LEAGUE
– Flyhalf Riaan Viljoen contributed 11 points via the boot to guide the NTT Docomo Red Hurricanes to a thrilling 16-13 away win over the NEC Green Rockets. Lock Wimpie van der Walt and No 8 Ryan Kankowski started alongside Viljoen for the winners, but Warren Whiteley replaced Kankowski in the second half.
– Bok Franco Mostert played for the Ricoh Black Rams in their 40-24 victory over the Canon Eagles at home. Mostert was yellow-carded in the 26th minute. Lock Phillip van der Walt started for the Eagles and scored the opening try of the game in the seventh minute.
– The Toshiba Brave Lupus slumped to a 28-24 defeat against the Suntory Sungoliath. Fullback Coenie van Wyk scored nine points – a try and two conversions – for Toshiba, but ultimately his effort wasn’t enough.
– Lappies Labuschagne and Lionel Mapoe were in the Kubota Spears side that beat the NNT Communications Shining Arcs 23-17. Mapoe scored the first try of the match in the 30th minute. Lock Grant Hattingh joined Labuschagne and Mapoe on the field in the second half. No 8 Willie Britz and flyhalf Elton Jantjies were on duty for the Shining Arcs, with the former scoring a try and the later slotting the conversion.
– Fullback Gerhard van der Heever’s Yamaha Jubilo suffered a 44-19 defeat at the hands of the Panasonic Wild Knights.
– Prop Hencus van Wyk, No 8 Nardus van der Walt and fullback André Esterhuizen were on duty for the Munakata Sanix Blues, who went down 17-15 to the Toyota Industries Shuttles.
– Toyota Verblitz, with prop Ruan Smith, lock Jason Jenkins, flyhalf Lionel Cronjé and fullback Gio Aplon in their ranks, claimed a 39-33 victory over the Kobe Kobelco Steelers. Jenkins scored a try in the first half, while Cronjé managed a self-converted try late in the second half to win the game for Verblitz.
Compiled by Mariette Adams and Dylan Jack