LIVE

    S15: SA’s travel angst has returned

    2018-03-24 11:38

    Rob Houwing, Sport24 chief writer

    Cape Town – South African teams have slumped to “nought from eight” from tour matches in Australasia thus far in the 2018 Super Rugby season … suggesting a return to the dark days of rank ineptitude abroad.

    The comprehensive defeats for both the Sharks (46-14 to the Rebels) and Bulls (33-14 to the Crusaders) in the latest round ensured retention of the stubborn duck.

    It is an even split: four reverses in Australia, four in New Zealand.

    Although it is some comfort that South Africa’s best team for the past two seasons, the Lions – again domestic pace-setters this year – are yet to make their pilgrimage to Australia and New Zealand, both the Stormers and Bulls have come back winless from those shores and the spluttering Sharks are already in that position halfway through their four-game tour.

    The situation means that SA sides have made their worst start in that neck of the woods in four years.

    Last year, after the same tally of eight matches in Australasia, our sides had at least banked two victories: the Sharks seeing off the Brumbies 27-22 in Canberra (they lost to them in the tour opener this season) and the now-absent Kings earning a shock 26-24 triumph over the Waratahs in Sydney.

    In 2016 the stats were the same at this point … two from eight.

    Even better was the 2015 season, when SA sides boasted three scalps from their first eight Australasian fixtures (win percentage of 37.5).

    Despite the depressing zero record thus far in 2018, local enthusiasts will be praying things don’t crash to the point they did in 2014.

    That year, as many as 12 consecutive losses were experienced in Australasia before a merciful end to the sequence came fairly deep in the programme on May 2, the Sharks beating the Rebels 22-16 in Melbourne.

    If SA sides are to stave off emulating that dubious landmark in 2018, a win will have to be found in at least one of the following four matches: Blues v Sharks (March 31), Hurricanes v Sharks (April 6), Waratahs v Lions (April 20), Reds v Lions (April 28).

    *Follow our chief writer on Twitter: @RobHouwing

    What To Read Next

    Read News24’s Comments Policy

    Live Video Streaming
    Video Highlights
    Sport Talk

    Results

    04 August 2018
    28 July 2018
    21 July 2018
    20 July 2018
    14 July 2018
    13 July 2018
    07 July 2018
    06 July 2018
    30 June 2018
    29 June 2018
    03 June 2018
    02 June 2018
    01 June 2018
    26 May 2018
    25 May 2018
    19 May 2018
    18 May 2018
    12 May 2018
    11 May 2018
    05 May 2018
    04 May 2018
    28 April 2018
    27 April 2018
    22 April 2018
    21 April 2018
    20 April 2018
    14 April 2018
    13 April 2018
    07 April 2018
    06 April 2018
    01 April 2018
    31 March 2018
    30 March 2018
    24 March 2018
    23 March 2018
    18 March 2018
    17 March 2018
    16 March 2018
    10 March 2018
    09 March 2018
    03 March 2018
    02 March 2018
    24 February 2018
    23 February 2018
    17 February 2018

    Logs

    Rank Team P W Pts
    • Lions (Q)
    • Jaguares (wc)
    • Sharks (wc)
    • Stormers
    • Bulls

    Opinion Poll

    Who will win the 2018 Rugby Championships?

    Can you name the top Super Rugby tryscorers of all-time?

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