SARugbymag.co.za looks back at the past weekend’s English Premiership, Pro14, French Top 14, Japanese Cup and Test matches involving South African players.
FRENCH TOP 14
– JP Pietersen’s try was in vain as 14-man Toulon slumped to a 36-25 defeat at the hands of Bordeaux. Prop Marcel van der Merwe and lock Juandré Kruger featured alongside Pietersen for Toulon. Lock Jandré Marais started for Bordeaux.
– Castres pipped hosts Perpignan 16-12. Fullback Scott Spedding scored the only try of the match for Castres, who also had centre Robert Ebersohn, prop Daniel Kötze, hooker Jody Jenneker and replacement scrumhalf Rory Kockott in their ranks.
– No 8 Antonie Claassen and his Racing teammates snatched a 24-23 win over Grenoble. Wing Raymond Rhule, lock Francois Uys and loosehead prop JC Janse van Rensburg were in Grenoble’s starting XV.
– Toulouse beat Pau 15-13 to move up to second on the log. Lock Rynhardt Elstadt and prop Maks van Dyk were on duty for Toulouse.
– Ruan Pienaar and Frans Steyn starred as Montpellier ground out an 18-15 victory against Agen. Steyn and Pienaar scored Montpellier’s two tries, while the latter also kicked a conversion and two penalties for a 13-point haul. Jan Serfontein, Jacques du Plessis, Paul Willemse and Henry Immelman also turned out for Montpellier, who are now ninth in the standings.
– La Rochelle upset Stade Français 14-12 to move above their victims to fourth on the log. Flyhalf Morné Steyn, scrumhalf Piet van Zyl, loose forwards Willem Alberts and Hanro Liebenberg, and prop Heinke van der Merwe did service for Stade, with Steyn accounting for all their points via four penalties.
– Lock Flip van der Merwe and his Clermont teammates came from behind to down Lyon 31-11. Lyon conceded three yellow cards, two of which were handed to lock Hendrik Roodt and prop Albertus Buckle. Scrumhalf Charl McLeod, hooker Deon Fourie and lock Etienne Oosthuizen played for Lyon.
– Saracens survived a brave comeback from the Leicester Tigers to win 27-22. Centre Brad Barritt led Saracens, who had Schalk Burger and Michael Rhodes in their loose trio.
– Juan de Jongh scored one of Wasps’ four tries as they beat the Bristol Bears 32-28 for their first win in seven games in all competitions. De Jongh ran a perfect line to finish off a good attacking move and ensure the home side made a perfect start to the match. Ashley Johnson was also in action for Wasps, starting at blindside flank, but was substituted in the 23rd minute.
– Robert du Preez kicked two penalties and a conversion to help the Sale Sharks beat the Northampton Saints 18-13. Scrumhalf Cobus Reinach scored the opening try for Saints within the first minute, but it was not enough to steer them to victory. Jean-Luc du Preez made his debut for Sale, alongside captain Jono Ross, and made a total of 44m from 20 carries. Faf de Klerk was at scrumhalf for Sale, while Northampton brought loosehead prop Francois van Wyk off the bench.
– The Exeter Chiefs maintained their unbeaten start to the season by beating Gloucester 23-6. Don Armand did duty for the Chiefs, while Gloucester brought Jaco Visagie off the bench for his first match since joining the club on loan from the Bulls. Lock Gerbrandt Grobler was a substitute for Johan Ackermann’s side, while Exeter had Wilhelm van der Sluys on the bench.
– Nick Schonert scored a first-half try for the Worcester Warriors to guide them to a 20-13 victory against Harlequins. The tighthead prop went over from the back of a powerful maul to continue his good form for the Warriors. Centre Francois Venter, scrumhalf Francois Hougaard and lock Anton Bresler, as well as veteran centre Wynand Olivier, were all in action for the Warriors.
– The Newcastle Falcons moved off the bottom of the table with a 16-8 win over Bath. Kyle Cooper started at hooker for the Falcons, while prop Jacques van Rooyen came off the bench for Bath.
– The Glasgow Warriors continued their dominance of Conference A by hammering the Cardiff Blues 40-15. Veteran tighthead prop Petrus du Plessis was a late replacement for Glasgow, while lock George Earle started for the Blues.
– Leinster were equally as dominant in their 52-7 win against the Ospreys. Hanno Dirksen started for the Ospreys on the wing and scored their only try of the match just before full time. Inside centre Johnny Kotze, on loan from the Bulls, was also in action for the Ospreys, along with tighthead prop Tom Botha.
– Werner Kruger got on the scoresheet for the Scarlets as they beat Ulster 29-12. Loose forward Uzair Cassiem, who made an impressive 53m from five carries, and lock David Bulbring were also in the Scarlets’ pack. Louis Ludik was at outside centre for Ulster, while flank Marcell Coetzee had an impressive game for the visitors, making 24 tackles and 29m. Clayton Blommetjies was a replacement for the Scarlets.
– Dewaldt Duvenage put in an impressive solo display for Benetton Treviso as they lost 25-21 to the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein. Duvenage scored one of Treviso’s three tries and kept the Cheetahs in their half with some intelligent kicks. Lock Irné Herbst was also in Treviso’s starting XV.
– Munster claimed a 32-7 victory over Zebre in Parma. Chris Cloete and Arno Botha were both in Munster’s back row. Botha made 57m from seven carries for the visitors, who brought centre Jaco Taute off the bench late in the match. Flyhalf Francois Brummer converted Zebre’s only try.
– The Dragons lifted themselves off the bottom of Conference B by stunning Edinburgh 18-12. Jarryd Sage, brother of Bulls backline player Dylan, started at centre for the Dragons, who had former Cheetahs lock Rynard Landman in their XV. Wing Duhan van der Merwe and flyhalf Jaco van der Walt did duty for Edinburgh.
– Flank Deon Stegmann and his Honda Heat teammates slumped to a 52-31 defeat against the Ricoh Black Rams.
– Suntory Sungoliath edged the NTT Communications Shining Arcs 33-26. Flyhalf Garth April and flank Robert Kruger represented the Shining Arcs. April scored a try and kicked two conversions.
– Henco Venter bagged a brace for Toshiba Brave Lupus in their 49-19 hammering of the Coca-Cola Red Sparks.
– Toyota Verblitz, featuring Carl Wegner, Jason Jenkins, Jannes Kirsten, Lionel Cronjé, Clinton Swart and Reniel Hugo defeated the Toyota Industries Shuttles 31-19. Cronjé scored a try and Swart slotted three conversions. Flank Nic de Jager started for the Industries Shuttles.
– The Panasonic Wild Knights outlasted the Canon Eagles in an exciting encounter to clinch a 41-36 win. Fred Zeilinga top-scored for the Eagles with a try and four conversions. He played alongside Jan de Klerk, Phillip van der Walt and Rynier Bernardo.
– Flank Grant Hattingh and the Kobe Kobelco Steelers lashed the Munakata Sanix Blues 52-10. Flyhalf Curwin Bosch and prop Hencus van Wyk, who was yellow-carded in the second half, turned out for the Blues.
– The Kubota Spears fought from 14-0 down to beat hosts Yamaha Jubilo 24-14. Kubota’s outside centre Gerdus van der Walt won his personal duel with Burger Odendaal, who had a quiet game for Yamaha.
– Josh Strauss and Allan Dell both started for Scotland as they bounced back from their defeat to the Boks by beating Argentina 14-9. WP Nel came off the bench for the Scots.
– Quinn Roux was on the bench for a second-string Ireland side that cruised to a 57-14 win against the USA. Marcel Brache, Hanco Germishuys and Ruben de Haas did duty for the Americans.
– Braam Steyn and Johan Meyer were in action for Italy as they were thrashed 66-3 by the All Blacks. Steyn started at No 8, while Meyer came off the bench.
– DTH van der Merwe scored a crucial brace as Canada qualified for the 2019 World Cup with a 27-10 win over Hong Kong in the final repechage match in Marseille. Tighthead prop Grant Kemp and hooker Dayne Jans started for Hong Kong.
– Germany ended their World Cup qualifying campaign on a high by thrashing Kenya 43-6. Flank Sebastian Ferreira scored a hat-trick for Germany, who had Jaco Otto, hooker Kurt Haupt, lock Michael Poppmeier, flyhalf Raynor Parkinson and wing Marcel Coetzee in their XV. Haupt and Otto also scored a try each.
Compiled by Mariette Adams & Dylan Jack
Photo: Tony Marshall/Getty Images