Francois Hougaard starred for the Worcester Warriors in their 30-15 upset win over the Northampton Saints, while Gloucester, Wasps, Exeter, Leicester and Bath were also victorious in the English Premiership.
Coach Gary Gold’s team went into their match against the Saints as underdogs, but delivered a brilliant performance to clinch a bonus-point win that lifts them off the foot of the log.
Playing his first match since suffering an injury during the Boks’ 57-0 defeat against the All Blacks in September, Hougaard controlled the game well for the Warriors to come out on top in his personal battle with scrumhalf Cobus Reinach.
In other matches, Johan Ackermann’s Gloucester side fought back from 14-9 down to inflict a 23-17 defeat on Saracens, Wasps hammered the Newcastle Falcons 40-10, the Exeter Chiefs defeated Harlequins 31-17, the Sale Sharks slumped to a 35-27 loss against the Leicester Tigers despite Faf de Klerk’s six-point haul, and Bath beat London Irish 22-18.
Round 8 results:
Warriors 30 Northampton Saints 15
Gloucester 23 Saracens 17
Wasps 40 Newcastle Falcons 10
Exeter Chiefs 31 Harlequins 17
Leicester Tigers 32 Sale Sharks 27
London Irish 18 Bath 22
Photo: Matthew Lewis/Getty Images