SARugbymag.co.za picks a team of players who stuck their hands up during the fourth round of the Rainbow Cup SA this past weekend.
15 Aphelele Fassi
Despite ending on the losing side, Fassi was arguably the Sharks’ best performer against the Stormers. A kicking error at the start of the second half aside, the fullback looked class when putting boot to ball and it was his quick thinking that had him score an opportunistic try.
14 Rabz Maxwane
A tight call between him and the Bulls’ Madosh Tambwe. The Lions wing scored a classy try in the first half of their upset at Ellis Park, during which he deftly stepped past Bulls captain Duane Vermeulen. It was a timely reminder of what Maxwane can do when in top form.
13 Wandisile Simelane
Together with Burger Odendaal, Simelane did well to contain the threat of the Bulls midfield. Looked electric whenever he touched the ball.
12 Burger Odendaal
It was a typically uncompromising performance from Odendaal against his former side. Led the Lions astutely from the centres.
11 Edwill van der Merwe
After another excellent display, it looks like Van der Merwe is high on confidence. Scored a brace of tries in the first half against the Sharks, the first of which was a Gio Aplon-esque 60-metre counter-attack from a poor clearance, during which he left three defenders grasping at thin air.
10 Fred Zeilinga
The introduction of Zeilinga turned the game at Ellis Park on its head. His tactical kicking and goalkicking kept the Lions in the game before he went over to score the game winner.
9 Herschel Jantjies
Another live-wire performance from the Springbok scrumhalf. Jantjies was involved in an excellent exchange of passes that led to Pieter-Steph du Toit’s try against the Sharks.
8 Siya Kolisi
Kolisi’s 60 minutes against the Stormers was one of the Springboks’ good-news stories from the weekend. More involved than he has been for the past fortnight and ran over a Stormers defender to set Yaw Penxe on his way for a try.
7 Pieter-Steph du Toit
Emptied the tank for another 80-minute performance, after being rested last weekend. Showed that he has lost none of his pace as he sprinted clear through the Sharks defence for a second-half try.
6 Vincent Tshituka
Put in a man-of-the-match effort as the Lions finally broke their duck against the Bulls. Showed tremendous work rate and a hunger to get on the ball.
5 Marvin Orie
Proved a nuisance against the Sharks at both the lineout and in physical exchanges. It was clear why the Stormers missed both him and his second-row partner through injury.
4 JD Schickerling
A tireless performance after returning from a short-term injury. Racked up 14 tackles, the most of any player in the match.
3 Carlu Sadie
Much of the buildup to the weekend’s Jukskei derby focused on the Bulls unleashing their Springbok props. However, Sadie gave a clear message of his immense potential by sending Gqoboka and co backwards at a rate of knots.
2 Jaco Visagie
Visagie’s work at the set piece is often unappreciated, but it was nonetheless vital in the Lions’ effort against the Bulls.
1 Sti Sithole
Did excellently to nullify Trevor Nyakane’s threat at the scrum. The former Stormers player is coming into his own in Johannesburg.
Photo: Mark Kolbe/Getty Images