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    Ackermann ponders move to England

    2017-03-17 07:24

    Cape Town - Lions coach Johan Ackermann has confirmed an approach from English club Gloucester.

    The GloucestershireLive website earlier this week indicated that Gloucester were looking for a replacement for Australian Laurie Fisher, with the Lions mentor high on their list.

    Ackermann is highly regarded both in South Africa and beyond after guiding the Lions to Currie Cup titles and the Super Rugby final in 2016.

    The former Springbok lock discussed the approach from Gloucester ahead of his side's Super Rugby meeting with the Reds at Ellis Park this weekend.

    "I have been offered an opportunity to go there and I am in the process of examining all the pros and the cons," Ackermann said in Johannesburg on Thursday.

    "I will make a decision sooner than later because I don't want the team to be distracted. We have a tournament to perform in, but I will obviously make the call when the time is right."

    Asked whether he had set a deadline to make a decision on Gloucester's offer, Ackermann revealed one was not in place.

    "I don't want the players to be in two minds and worry about my future. I want them to focus. For now, we have got a Reds game to win," he added.

    "If you put a timeframe to it, then the players will start guessing - Is it this week, is it next week?

    "At this stage I can only say there is an offer on the table and it is something I am looking at."

    Saturday’s Lions-Reds clash is scheduled for 17:15.

    Teams:

    Lions

    15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Madosh Tambwe, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Ruan Ackermann, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Jacques van Rooyen

    Substitutes: 16 Robbie Coetzee, 17 Dylan Smith, 18 Johannes Jonker, 19 Lourens Erasmus, 20 Kwagga Smith, 21 Ross Cronje, 22 Jaco van der Walt, 23 Harold Vorster

    Reds

    15 Karmichael Hunt, 14 Izaia Perese, 13 Samu Kerevi, 12 Duncan Paia’aua, 11 Eto Nabuli, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Nick Frisby, 8 Scott Higginbotham, 7 George Smith, 6 Hendrik Tui, 5 Kane Douglas, 4 Rob Simmons, 3 Sam Talakai, 2 Andrew Ready, 1 James Slipper (captain)

    Substitutes:16 Stephen Moore, 17 Markus Vanzati, 18 Taniela Tupou, 19 Lukhan Tui, 20 Adam Korczyk, 21 James Tuttle, 22 Jake McIntyre, 23 Chris Kuridrani

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    Fixtures

    Saturday, 17 February 2018
    • Stormers v Jaguares, Cape Town 15:05
    • Lions v Sharks, Emirates Airlines Park 17:15
    Friday, 23 February 2018
    • Highlanders v Blues, 08:35
    • Rebels v Reds, AAMI Park 10:45
    Saturday, 24 February 2018
    • Sunwolves v Brumbies, Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium 06:15
    • Crusaders v Chiefs, 08:35
    • Waratahs v Stormers, Allianz Stadium 10:45
    • Lions v Jaguares, Emirates Airlines Park 15:05
    • Bulls v Hurricanes, Loftus Versfeld 17:15

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