Handre Pollard played an influential role in helping Leicester Tigers claim a derby victory, while fellow Springbok flyhalf Rob du Preez continued his superb form for Sale.
– Springboks Pollard and Jasper Wiese were both key to helping Leicester Tigers secure a deserved 26-10 win against Northampton Saints in the East Midlands derby on Saturday. The Springbok flyhalf was typically accurate with the boot, slotting four penalties in 50 minutes to take the Tigers to a 12-3 lead. Pollard added conversions to tries South African prop Frans van Wyk and flank Hanro Liebenberg for a 16-point haul. It was only Leicester’s second win of the season, as they have struggled at the start of the season with their internationals.
— Darren (@SaffasRugby) November 19, 2023
— Premiership Rugby (@premrugby) November 18, 2023
– On a good weekend for Springbok flyhalves, Rob du Preez scored 15 points as Sale Sharks went top of the Premiership with a bonus-point 40-22 win over Newcastle Falcons. Du Preez, joined in Sale’s lineup by brother Dan du Preez, scored a try and added five conversions for the Sharks, who claimed their fifth win of the season. Flank Ernst van Rhyn and lock Cobus Wiese, both former Stormers, also started for Sale.
– Flank Jaco Coetzee has enjoyed a return to form as he produced a man of the match performance as second-placed Bath edged Bristol Bears 20-19 in their derby. The 27-year-old former Stormer has endured a difficult run of injuries since moving to England, but has started to look back to his best for Johann van Graan’s side. Springbok prop Thomas du Toit and scrumhalf Louis Schreuder both played off the bench for Bath, while Bristol had Benhard Janse van Rensburg at inside centre.
What a performance from the Number 8!
The @Pol_Roger 𝐏𝐞𝐫𝐟𝐨𝐫𝐦𝐚𝐧𝐜𝐞 𝐨𝐟 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐌𝐚𝐭𝐜𝐡 in our Derby Day victory goes to Jaco Coetzee.
Congratulations Jaco, enjoy the bubbles! pic.twitter.com/w8O8OaqkHY
— Bath Rugby (@BathRugby) November 17, 2023
– Springbok centre Andre Esterhuizen dotted down in his first start for Harlequins, since returning from World Cup duty, in a 10-38 home Londond derby loss to Saracens. In a game where both teams were stacked with international quality, Saracens, who had Ivan van Zyl starting at scrumhalf, proved too strong. Tyrone Green started on the wing for Harlequins.
– Exeter Chiefs scored a late flurry of points to snatch a 25-24 win against Gloucester. Aidon Davis and flank Jacques Vermeulen both started for Exeter, who moved up to third in the Premiership.
French Top 14
– Springbok captain Siya Kolisi watched from the stands alongside teammate Trevor Nyakane as Racing 92 won the Parisian derby against Stade Francais. South African flyhalf Tristan Tedder kicked a conversion and penalty in a 13-9 away win for Racing, who drew level on points at the top of the table with their crosstown rivals. Stade had former Junior Springboks JJ van der Mescht (lock) and Jeremy Ward in their starting lineup, as well as veteran scrumhalf Rory Kockott, who was yellow carded.
– Marvin Orie‘s Perpignan continued their turnaround since the Springbok lock’s return, beating Montpellier for a second win in three matches. Orie started as Perpignan, who were without a win before his arrival, came closer to lifting themselves out of the relegation zone. Springbok scrumhalf Cobus Reinach and South African-born French lock Paul Willemse both started for Montpellier, who are bottom of the table with just one win this season.
– Newly-promoted Oyonnax leapfrogged Lyon into 10th place on the table by claiming their third win of the season. Lyon had Arno Botha at flank, while former Sharks wing Thaakir Abrahams got his first taste of French rugby as a substitute.
Photo: David Rogers/Getty Images