The football doesn't stop!

The 2014 SWC might be over, but the PSL and English Premiership are around the corner! Have your say on our Forum!

LIVE

    Lions ready for Kings challenge

    2013-02-04 14:40
    Brenden Nel - SuperSport
    Johannesburg - While admitting that the MTN Lions have a point to prove when they take on the Southern Kings in their next Lions Challenge match this weekend, captain JC Janse van Rensburg has moved to play down the significance of the friendly.

    According to the supersport.com website, there is no doubt there are a lot of smarting Lions fans across the country at the moment. While watching the Kings court controversy at every corner, appoint foreign coaches and deny SARU’s ruling of just two overseas players, the Lions have had to be content with friendly matches against second string sides and the prospect of no Super Rugby action this year.

    Add to that the Kings’ lack of willingness to promote the welfare of their black player base – the reason they were formed in the first place – and it isn’t any wonder that the Lions will have loads of support for their game this weekend.

    Yet the game is still just a pre-season friendly. But to so many who feel aggrieved with SARU’s decision to exclude the Lions from Super Rugby Saturday’s game will be more of a revenge festival.

    The Lions themselves have admitted this is a game they want to win. And while they may not say it openly, it is a game they would want to win handsomely.

    Janse van Rensburg was at pains to tone down the rhetoric ahead of the mouth-watering clash.

    “Everybody is making a big thing about the Kings game, but for us it’s important to stay focused on what we want to do. There is a certain type of game plan we want to achieve. It is an important game for us which we want to win, but the real important game is actually the promotion-relegation game against whoever we play,” Janse van Rensburg said.

    While the Lions captain is correct and the focus should be on building up to the July promotion-relegation clash, the reality is that a win over the Kings here will go a long way in terms of confidence. The Lions have also been mixing and matching teams in their three matches thus far and this weekend may be the first we see of a full-strength side.

    The game is of course important for another reason. Johan Ackermann and his coaching staff will want a lot of depth so that the return of players on loan is a bonus, and not a necessity when their playoff arrives.

    “There’s a lot of hard work on Monday. It is a big game and I’m sure coach will pick his strongest team, but we have to go back and work hard to enforce the game plan we want to play.

    “We want to try and give these players experience, so that if it comes down to the promotion-relegation game, we have a good squad in good nick that we don’t necessarily have to rely on those players.”

    For the Kings this is also a must win game, to show the rest of the nation they belong in this league. Either way, it’s likely to be a cracker of a game.

    Read News24’s Comments Policy

    24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

    Comment on this story
    92 comments
    Add your comment
    Comment 0 characters remaining
    Live Video Streaming
    • SS3
      Fri, 01 Aug 2014 @
      04:00
    • SS4
      Fri, 01 Aug 2014 @
      05:00
    • SS5
      Fri, 01 Aug 2014 @
      05:59
    • SS7
      Fri, 01 Aug 2014 @
      06:00
    Video Highlights
    Sport Talk

    Fixtures

    02 August 2014
    • Waratahs v Crusaders, Sydney 11:40

    Results

    26 July 2014
    19 July 2014
    12 July 2014
    11 July 2014
    06 July 2014
    05 July 2014
    04 July 2014
    28 June 2014
    27 June 2014
    31 May 2014
    30 May 2014
    24 May 2014
    23 May 2014
    18 May 2014
    17 May 2014
    16 May 2014
    11 May 2014
    10 May 2014
    09 May 2014
    03 May 2014
    02 May 2014
    26 April 2014
    25 April 2014
    19 April 2014
    18 April 2014
    12 April 2014
    11 April 2014
    05 April 2014
    04 April 2014
    29 March 2014
    28 March 2014
    22 March 2014
    21 March 2014
    15 March 2014
    14 March 2014
    08 March 2014
    07 March 2014
    01 March 2014
    28 February 2014
    23 February 2014
    22 February 2014
    21 February 2014
    15 February 2014

    Logs

    Rank Team P W Pts

    Opinion Poll

    The 2014 Vodacom Super Rugby final will be contested between the Waratahs and Crusaders. Who is your money on?

    Monday Quiz Madness!

    TAKE THE QUIZ
    There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.