The DHL Stormers continued the second longest winning streak against a single opponent in Vodacom Super Rugby history by continuing a 10-match winning run against the Lions after they secured a 19-16 victory over their Johannesburg opponents on Saturday.
The current record for the most consecutive victories against a single opponent is held by the Crusaders who boast an 11-game winning sequence against the Reds.
But the DHL Stormers recorded their 10th successive victory over the Lions on Saturday in a match that could have gone either way. The Johannesburg team dominated most of the territory and possession of the fi rst half, but trialed the hosts 9-8 at the half time break. Vodacom Super Rugby rookie Gary van Aswegen kicked three penalties for the DHL Stormers while the Lions points in the first half came thanks to a try by Waylon Murray and a penalty kick by Elton Jantjies.
Jantjies added a second penalty after the restart before SA Under-20 winger Jaco Taute, who was also named man of the match, scored in the corner to hand the visitors a 16-9 lead. DHL Stormers reserve flyhalf Peter Grant edged his side closer to the Lions’ lead thanks to a penalty kick before flanker Pieter Louw crashed over the try line to steer the hosts to their first victory of the 2011 Vodacom Super Rugby. Grant added the conversion (19-16).
The Sharks ended round two of Vodacom Super Rugby in fi rst position on the South African Conference log and in second position on the overall standings after they secured a 26-12 victory over the Blues in Durban on Saturday.
The hosts dominated the match and were rewarded with two tries which were scored by flyhalf Patrick Lambie and winger JP Pietersen. Lambie, who also claimed the man of the match award for his superb performance on attack and defence, kicked four penalties and two conversions to end the game with a personal points haul of 21.
The Blues never threatened the Sharks’ try line and were guilty of numerous handling errors throughout the game. Their only points came via the boots of flyhalf Stephen Brett who kicked three penalties, and utility back Luke McAllister who added one penalty.
The Vodacom Blue Bulls left it late, but had enough fi re power in the final quarter of their match against the Toyota Cheetahs to defeat the hosts 25-23 at the Free State Rugby Stadium on Friday.
The Bloemfontein team enjoyed a 23-8 lead, but failed to close off the game and secure a rare fi rst Vodacom Super Rugby home win against the defending champions. The hosts have never defeated the Vodacom Bulls during their three games in the Free State capital, and had the perfect opportunity of rewriting the record books on Friday.
Both teams scored three tries in this game. Vodacom Bulls scrumhalf Fourie du Preez who achieved his 100th Vodacom Super Rugby cap last Saturday, celebrated his 100th Vodacom Super Rugby point against the Toyota Cheetahs after he added his 20th try in the history of the competition.
The defending champions’ other points came thanks to the efforts of lock Bakkies Botha and flank Danie Rossouw who added fi ve-pointers. Flyhalf Morne Steyn kicked two penalties and two conversions.
The Toyota Cheetahs’ five-pointers were notched up by Ashley Johnson and centres Andries Strauss and Robert Ebersohn.
Flyhalf Naas Olivier kicked two penalties and one conversion. The result for the hosts ensured that they ended round two in fifth position on the South African conference with one log point.