SARugbymag.co.za looks back at the past weekend's English Premiership, Celtic Pro12 and French Top 14 matches that involved South African players.
– Saracens, for whom centre Brad Barritt, No 8 Ernst Joubert, lock Mouritz Botha, hooker Schalk Brits started, came out 23-10 victors against the Exeter Chiefs. Brits scored for the Londoners and scrumhalf Neil de Kock was named on their bench, while flank Don Armand sat on the Chiefs' bench.
– Gerrit-Janse van Velze came off the bench in the 65th minute for the Northampton Saints, who beat the Newcastle Falcons 22-16 at Kingston Park.
– The Worcester Warriors suffered yet another defeat, this time against the Sale Sharks, going down 24-12 at Sixways Stadium. Lock Mike Williams started for the losers.
– Bath moved to third on the table with Saracens, after they overcame London Wasps 35-25 at the Rec. Bok flanks Francois Louw and Ashley Johnson started for Bath and Wasps respectively.
– Connacht beat bottom side Zebre 27-19, opening an eight-point gap between them. Flank and captain Andries van Schalkwyk scored for the Italians and lock Michael van Vuren also began for them, while Danie Poolman made his appearance for Connacht from the 62nd minute.
– Munster regained the top spot in their see-saw battle with Leinster, after they won 25-11 against the Ospreys, who had wing Hanno Dirksen on their bench. Prop BJ Botha played for winners, with compatriot CJ Stander on the bench.
–The Dragons overcame a 10-point deficit to defeat former Lions captain Josh Strauss's Glasgow Warriors 24-23.
– Bok Ruan Pienaar played flyhalf and kicked two conversions for Ulster, as they edged past Treviso with a 14-12 win, keeping their play-off hopes alive. Lock Robbie Diack scored one of two tries for captain Johann Muller's Ulster. Flank Meyer Swanepoel played the full 80 for the Italians.
– Lock Johan Snyman marked his return to the Scarlets' starting line-up with a 25-21 win over Edinburgh. Prop Jacobie Adriaanse was on their substitution list. Flyhalf Carl Bezuidenhout added two penalties and a conversion for Edinburgh. Former Kings and Cheetahs centre Andries Strauss, eighthman Cornell du Preez, lock Izak van der Westhuizen and props WP Nel and Wicus Blaauw completed Edinburgh's South African contingent in their run-on XV.
FRENCH TOP 14
– Scrumhalf Heini Adams and lock Juandré Marais formed part of Bordeaux's starting team that shocked Racing Métro with a 25-9 victory. Bok lock Juandré Kruger and prop Brian Mujati were in Racing's XV with lock Francois van der Merwe on the bench.
–The relegation-bound Biarritz became the first team to beat Grenoble at Stade Lesdiguieress this season. Ex-Stormers fullback Joe Pietersen kicked two penalties for Biarritz, who trailed by four points at half-time, to win the match 22-20. Lock Hendrik Roodt and prop Albertus Buckle made Grenoble's run-on XV.
– Former Sharks centre Meyer Bosman, Bok flyhalf Morné Steyn, locks Gerhard Mostert and Anton van Zyl and prop Heinke van der Merwe started for Stade Français, who narrowly sneaked past Oyonnax 29-26, thanks to a last-minute Steyn penalty. Before that he kicked three conversions and a penalty. Hooker Michael van Vuuren joined play in the 63rd minute.
– Perpignan defeated Brive 12-6, a win which moves them to within four points of their victims on the overall log. Scrumhalf Dewaldt Duvenhage failed the make Perpignan's starting team and stayed on the bench. Flyhalf Riaan Swanepoel and prop Kevin Buys were on the bench for Brive, with Buys coming on as an impact player in the 41st minute.
– Castres fought back from a huge 19-point deficit to beat Toulouse 29-27, with ex-Sharks scrumhalf Rory Kockott leading the charge. Kockott scored a try, kicked three conversions and landed a penalty. Flank Pedrie Wannenburg also started in this epic battle. Playing directly opposite Kockott, Bok scrumhalf Jano Vermaak and prop Schalk Ferreira, who was yellow-carded in the 1st half, were on duty for Toulouse.
– Toulon beat Bayonne 15-9 in a tightly contested match. Ex-Sharks hooker Craig Burden, who was sent to the sin bin, Bok flank Juan Smith and scrumhalf Michael Claassens started for the European champions and lock Danie Rossouw joined them in the 70th minute. Fullback Scott Spedding and prop JC Janse van Rensburg played for Bayonne.
– Flank Gerhard Vosloo played the entire game for Clermont, who thumped Montpellier 42-16. Montpellier sent out a strong midfield pairing of ex-Bulls player Wynand Olivier and former Cheetah Robert Ebersohn.
Compiled by Mariette Adams
Photo: Remy Gabalda/Getty Images