With a second-half recovery against the Sharks, the Lions made it two wins on the trot in the Currie Cup at Kings Park on Saturday evening.
The Joburgers fought back from a 22-14 half-time deficit to win 38-32 in Durban, thanks in no small part to two penalty tries, to secure just their second victory of the season after having previously lost 10 straight matches in the competition.
A bonus-point try for the Sharks, as well as a point for losing within seven points, left the playoff-chasing Durbanites in fifth on the log but hot on the heels of the fourth-placed Pumas ahead of the last round fixtures of the regular season.
The Sharks raced into a 10-0 lead after flyhalf Tito Bonilla opened the scoring from the kicking tee, before lock Thembelani Bholi dotted down for the first try of the match. Bonilla added the extras.
But, two tries from young Lions No 13 Henco van Wyk, with Tiaan Swanepoel making no mistake converting both touchdowns, had the visitors seizing control of proceedings.
Sharks No 8 Mpilo Gumede survived a possible yellow card for a controversial tackle on scrumhalf Sanele Nohamba, who was later sent to the naughty chair for a dangerous no-arms hit around the ankles on the loose forward.
The hosts capitalised on their one-man advantage as hooker Jason Alexander completed a brace on debut before the half-time hooter. Bonilla added another conversion to his first-half tally as the Sharks went into the break eight points ahead on the scoreboard.
The Lions pulled back to within a point soon after the restart, referee Cwengile Jadezweni penalising the Sharks for multiple scrum infringements.
Bholi was then yellow-carded for collapsing the maul and the visitors leveraged their supremacy at scrum time to earn another penalty try and regain the lead.
Lock Ruben Schoeman crashed over for the Lions’ fifth try of the match, with Swanepoel adding the extras, as the Joburgers powered into a 13-point lead.
But, right wing Marnus Potgieter shrugged off several tackles to secure a crucial bonus-point try for the Sharks, and Bonilla converted, with just under 20 minutes left on the clock.
Swanepoel nailed his second penalty of the second stanza before Bonilla struck the vital three points for the home side just before the final whistle to complete a 38-32 result.