Mon, Apr 23, 2007 - Page 19 News List

Stormers hold off Blues to earn victory


Bulls wing Bryan Habana, right, evades a tackle from the Lions Cobus Grobbelaar to score a try in their Rugby Super 14 match at Ellis Park Stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa, on Saturday. The Bulls beat the Lions 31-7.


The Stormers held off an early attack by the Blues to win their Super 14 match 33-20 on Saturday.

The Blues started aggressively with center Isaia Toeava brushing aside a series of weak tackles to score a try in the third minute. Flyhalf David Holwell's conversion and a penalty in the 13th minute put the Blues 10-0 ahead.

The Stormers responded with a well-worked counterattack which ended with a try by Conrad Jantjes, and flyhalf Peter Grant kicked the first of his three conversions.

Grant kicked a penalty to level the scores before Stormers captain Luke Watson took a pass from lock Ross Skeate -- after a turnover in midfield -- and outstripped the cover defenses for a converted try.

Grant and Holwell exchanged penalties for the half-time score of 20-13 in favor of the Stormers.

Grant kicked a penalty five minutes after the interval, and the Stormers came under constant pressure with a match total of 93 tackles to 39 for the Blues.

But the Stormers went further ahead when Springbok center Jean de Villiers intercepted the ball and ran the length of the field to score under the poles for a converted try.

Grant stretched the lead with a penalty in the 58th minute. The Blues responded by attacking the Stormers line almost continually but their efforts were rewarded with only a single try by Tony Woodcock, which was converted by Isa Nacewa.

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