SARugbymag.co.za looks back at the past weekend's English Premiership, Celtic Pro12, French Top 14 and Six Nations matches, involving South African players.
– Bath, with flank Francois Louw in their ranks, edged the Newcastle Falcons 21-19 at the Rec to make it back-to-back wins in the competition for the first time this season. Lock Mouritz Botha started for the Falcons, but it was Louw who was in on the action. The Bok created a try in the first half and was yellow-carded in the second. Bath and Newcastle remain ninth and 11th on the log respectively.
– Centre Wynand Olivier and No 8 Gerrit-Jan van Velze scored the only tries to give the Worcester Warriors a 21-15 victory over Harlequins at The Stoop. Scrumhalf Francois Hougaard and tighthead prop Nic Schonert featured in the winners’ starting lineup alongside the try-scorers.
– Flank Don Armand and his Exeter Chiefs teammates beat lock Victor Matfield’s Northampton Saints 20-12 at Sandy Park, to move to the top of the log after 17 rounds. The loss sees the Saints relinquish their playoff spot as they drop from fourth to fifth in the standings.
– Wasps thrashed the Sale Sharks 39-12 at Ricoh Arena. Hooker Ashley Johnson scored a first-half try in the bonus-point win for Wasps. Prop Brian Mujati was included in Sale’s run-on team. Wasps are ranked third and Sale eighth.
– Saracens, featuring inside centre Brad Barritt, scrumhalf Neil de Kock, flank Michael Rhodes, lock Alistair Hargreaves, prop Petrus du Plessis and hooker Schalk Brits, slumped to a 21-13 defeat against the Leicester Tigers at Welford Road. The win moves the Tigers into the top four, while Sarries are relegated from first to second position.
– The Glasgow Warriors stunned Leinster 12-6 at the Scotstoun Stadium. Flank Tyrone Holmes played for the Warriors, while Zane Kirchner was at fullback for Leinster.
FRENCH TOP 14
– Flank Willem Alberts scored one of five tries, while flyhalf Morné Steyn was on hand to add four conversions for Stade Français in their 33-20 win over La Rochelle. No 8 Jono Ross started alongside Alberts and Steyn for the winners and they were joined by compatriot Gerhard Mostert in the 74th minute.
– Montpellier, with Robert Ebersohn and Frans Steyn in midfield, Demetri Catrakilis at flyhalf, Pierre Spies at No 8, Paul Willemse and Jacques du Plessis in the second row and Bismarck du Plessis at hooker, crushed Racing 60-7 at the Altrad Stadium. Bismarck, Jacques and Steyn all crossed for first-half tries, while Catrakilis knocked over three conversions and a penalty in the rout. Fullback Johan Goosen, flank Antonie Claassen and locks Juandré Kruger and Francois van der Merwe represented the out of sorts Racing, who are now second in the standings. Flank Wiaan Liebenberg sat on the bench for Montpellier, who rose to fourth on the log.
– Centre Johann Sadie scored yet another try, while flyhalf Burton Francis succeeded with two conversions and three penalties but their efforts were in vain as Agen lost 30-28 against Oyonnax. The duo started alongside flank Marco Kotzé for the team chained to the foot of the standings. No 8 Pedrie Wannenburg and hooker Jody Jenneker were on duty for Oyonnax, with the former barging over for a try, while the latter was yellow-carded.
– Fullback Gio Aplon, scrumhalf Charl McLeod and lock Hendrik Roodt turned out for Grenoble to defeat Brive 26-22, with Aplon crossing for a crucial try in the 31st minute. Lock Johan Snyman started for Brive and was joined by second-half replacements Paul Hauman (flank), Peet Marais (lock) and Kevin Buys (prop).
– Loosehead prop Gurthrö Steenkamp’s 100th game for Toulouse ended in defeat as they went down 32-23 against hosts Clermont. Lock Flip van der Merwe, prop Dan Kotzé and Marthinus van der Westhuizen did service for Clermont who eclipsed Racing at the top of the log.
– Lock Quintin Geldenhuys was in Italy’s starting lineup, who suffered a crushing 67-14 defeat at the hands of Wales. No 8 Braam Steyn was on the Italians’ bench.
– Flank CJ Stander scored his second Test try in Ireland’s 35-25 win over Scotland in Dublin and hooker Richardt Strauss played off the bench for the winners. Prop WP Nel turned out for Scotland, while compatriot Josh Strauss completed their match 23.
– Scott Spedding played well for France in their 31-21 defeat against England, with the fullback making a few clean breaks against the Six Nations champions. Les Bleus also gave flank Bernard le Roux a rare start.
Compiled by Mariette Adams
Photo: Bertrand Langlois/AFP Photo