Alexander happy with SA teams’ Super Rugby form
Cape Town - SA Rugby president Mark Alexander on Monday congratulated the Lions and Stormers for winning their respective Super Rugby conferences in 2017.
The sides from Johannesburg and Cape Town will host two of the four quarter-finals this weekend, while the Sharks will also be in action as the top eight teams vie for the final four spots in the playoffs.
Apart from winning their conference, the Lions also topped the overall standings for the first time - following in the footsteps of the Stormers (2012), Bulls (2009 and 2010) and Sharks (2007), who have claimed the first place on the log in the last decade.
“To yet again have three South African teams in the playoffs, and the Lions topping the log, is a great achievement and advertisement for our rugby,” said Alexander.
“There is great optimism in our rugby again, with even our three other teams - the Southern Kings, Cheetahs and Bulls - putting in some noteworthy performances along the way.
“I think it’s fair to say however that the three strongest teams from South Africa have deservedly qualified for the playoffs and we would like to wish all of them very well for what the coming weeks may dish up.
“Looking back at the last 10 years, it’s clear that success at Super Rugby level has a spill-over effect into Test rugby, and with that in mind, as well as the Springboks’ performances against France last month, I think we can be optimistic about the rest of the international season.
“But first I would like to call on all our supporters across the length and breadth of the country to get behind the Lions, Stormers and Sharks as they carry our flag in the final weeks of Super Rugby.”
Super Rugby quarter-finals:
Friday, July 21
Brumbies v Hurricanes, Canberra - 11:35 (SA time)
Saturday, July 22
Crusaders v Highlanders, Christchurch - 09:35 (SA time)
Lions v Sharks, Johannesburg - 14:30
Stormers v Chiefs, Cape Town - 17:00