Ludik, Van der Merwe rescue Ulster looks back at the past weekend's English Premiership, Celtic Pro12 and French Top 14 matches, which involved SA players.


– In his first game as captain, lock Alistair Hargreaves led Saracens to a convincing 34-28 bonus-point win against Wasps. Prop Petrus du Plessis joined his compatriot from the 50th minute, while former Bok flank Ashley Johnson earned a starting berth for Wasps.

– The Exeter Chiefs scored seven unanswered tries to thrash London Welsh 52-0. Former Stormers lock Don Armand came off Exeter's bench in the 62nd minute.

– With lock Sebastian de Chaves in their run-on XV, the Leicester Tigers recorded a 36-17 bonus-point victory over the Newcastle Falcons in the opening round.


– Lock Reynier Bernardo started for the Neath-Swansea Ospreys, who defeated lowly Treviso 44-13. Replacement fullback Hanno Dirksen scored a try during his late cameo for the winners. It was lock Corniel van Zyl’s first match as skipper of Treviso and flank Meyer Swanepoel started next to his fellow countryman in the run-on team.

– Ulster debutants, ex-Sharks fullback Louis Ludik and former Lions captain Franco van der Merwe, scored a try apiece to salvage a 32-32 draw with the Scarlets. Flank Robbie Diack, prop Wiehahn Herbst and hooker Rob Herring started for Ulster, while lock Johan Snyman did service for Scarlets.

– Former Western Province wing Danie Poolman scored a crucial five-pointer to help Connacht to a 16-11 win over the Newport Gwent Dragons. There were no celebrations for ex-Cheetahs lock Rynard Landman, though, who was on debut for the Dragons.

– The Cardiff Blues eased to a 41-26 victory over Zebre, who had ex-Cheetahs fullback Hennie Daniller and flank Andries van Schalkwyk in their starting line-up and Andries Ferreira listed as a replacement.

– Former Bulls flank CJ Stander scored a brace, but it wasn’t enough for Munster, as Edinburgh registered a shock 14-13 win against them. Former EP Kings centre Andries Strauss and eighthman Cornell du Preez, along with prop WP Nel, all played for Edinburgh, with the latter also spending 10 minutes in the sin bin. Prop BJ Botha scrummed down for Munster.

– A late penalty handed the Glasgow Warriors a narrow 22-20 win against Leinster. Club captain and former Lions No 8 Josh Strauss led from the front with a try for Glasgow, while ex-Bok fullback Zane Kirchner did service for Leinster. Rossouw de Klerk made the Warriors bench, but wasn’t used.

TOP 14

– Montpellier claimed a 41-10 bonus-point win over Castres, with former Bok centre Wynand Olivier in their midfield. Former SA Sevens player Robert Ebersohn came on in the 52nd minute and dotted down in the 78th for Montpellier. Ex-Sharks scrumhalf Rory Kockott kicked a conversion and a penalty for Castres.

– Former SA U20 lock Peet Marais and prop Kevin Buys formed part of the Brive team who shocked Toulouse 29-19. Centre Riaan Swanepoel joined his compatriots in the 42nd minute. Former Bulls scrumhalf Jano Vermaak played for Toulouse from the 61th minute.

– Clermont scored four unanswered touchdowns to thump Racing Métro 32-6. Former Bok flyhalf Johan Goosen’s penalty and drop goal accounted for Racing’s points, while prop Brian Mujati, lock Juandré Kruger and scrumhalf Antonie Claassen all started alongside Goosen. Prop Daniel Kötze was used as a substitute from the 52nd minute by Clermont.

Charl McLeod scored a try for Grenoble, who defeated La Rochelle 30-12. Wing Gio Aplon, lock Hendrik Roodt and prop Albertus Buckle completed Grenoble's run-on XV, while lock Jacobus Grobler started for La Rochelle. Replacement hooker Erasmus van Vuuren took to the field in the 40th for the losers.

– Fullback Scott Spedding continued his rich try-scoring form, with another five-pointer for Bayonne who went down 34-29 to Stade Français. Prop JC Janse van Rensburg joined him in the 54th minute. Former Sharks centre Meyer Bosman, lock Gerhard Mostert and prop Heinke van der Merwe were all awarded starting berths for Stade.

– Former Stormers stalwart Deon Fourie came off the wood in the 51st minute to score a vital try for Lyon, who edged Oyonnax 26-23. His former teammate in Cape Town, scrumhalf Ricky Januarie, started for Lyon. Ex-Sharks hooker Jody Jenneker and former Bok Pedrie Wannenburg played for Oyonnax and prop Ruaan du Preez completed their bench.

– Toulon erased a seven-point deficit, to clinch an 18-13 win against Bordeaux. Scrumhalf Michael Claassens and flanks Gerhard Vosloo and Juan Smith started for the current champions and hooker Craig Burden was in the match-day squad, but failed to make an appearance off the bench. Former Boland lock Berend Botha played for the Basque side.

Compiled by Mariette Adams


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