State of the European cups: SA primed for playoffs

The DHL Stormers, Sharks and Lions will be at home, while the Vodacom Bulls and Cheetahs will take to the road as SA’s full contingent are geared for their first taste of European cup playoffs this week.

In the Champions Cup, the Stormers will host 2020-21 Premiership winners Harlequins in Cape Town on Saturday, while the Sharks welcome Vodacom United Rugby Championship opponents Munster to Kings Park.

Meanwhile, after finishing seventh in Pool A in the group stages, the Bulls face a challenging trip to take on unbeaten Toulouse on Sunday, who won the Champions Cup and Top 14 double in 2020-21.

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In the second-tier Challenge Cup, the Cheetahs have to travel to face French giants Toulon on Sunday. The Lions, meanwhile, will also take on a French side when they host Racing 92, who dropped down from the Champions Cup, in Johannesburg.

Heading into the European action, the Lions and Stormers pulled off admirable results in the URC this past weekend, but a Springbok-packed Sharks lost to Scarlets at Parc y Scarlets, while the Bulls went down fighting against Ulster in Belfast.

The Cheetahs board the plane for France after blitzing the Bulls in Bloemfontein, for what was their third bonus-point victory in as many matches in the Currie Cup.

Photo: @Springboks/Twitter

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