Lambie puts the boot into Crusaders for Sharks

The Sharks secured their first Super Rugby victory over the Crusaders since 2007 when they held on for a 21-17 victory in Durban.

The Sharks had lost their last five consecutive matches to the Crusaders and this was their third win in 17 matches against the Christchurch franchise.

The Crusaders scored the only try of the match but Patrick Lambie kicked seven penalties to win the match for the Sharks.

The Crusaders were playing without three of their stars but still pushed the Sharks through the match to the final quarter when they began to fade.

The result keeps the Sharks in third place in the overall standings and first in the South African Conference while the Crusaders took a losing bonus point from the match and they provisionally stay in sixth place.

Having beaten the Stormers last weekend the Crusaders will travel to Perth now for next weekend’s match against the Force.

The Sharks play the Stormers in Cape Town next week and then the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein.

Andy Ellis scored the only try for the seven-time champions, who had led for
most of the game, thanks also to four penalties from their flyhalf Tyler Bleyendaal.

But Bleyendaal also missed three kicks at goal in comparison to the accuracy
of Springbok back Lambie, which proved the difference in a tight contest at
Kings Park.

The Sharks started well and were rewarded with a second minute penalty, against
Zac Guilford for off-side, with Lambie slotting over.

But a fine line-break by Ryan Crotty allowed the visitors to dash in to the
home 22 shortly after and, when a maul developed, Tendai Mtawarira came in from
the side to hand the Crusaders a penalty, which Bleyendaal knocked over.

Another infringement from the New Zealanders, this time via prop Wyatt Crockett,
let Lambie take the hosts to 6-3.

The Crusaders then secured the only try of the game in the 19th minute when
a powerful run by Robbie Fruean down the left saw him slip the ball wide to
Adam Whitelock, who came back inside and offloaded to Ellis to score.

Bleyendaal missed the conversion and a subsequent penalty on the half-hour
mark, before finally finding his range again before the break when Marcell Coetzee
was off-side.

However, a late tackle by Fruean after the hooter enabled Lambie to cut the
gap to two as the players headed for the dressing room.

The visitors scored the first points of the second half six minutes in when
Bleyendaal slotted over from straight in front after a Francois Steyn high tackle.

There was a sustained period of pressure thereafter with Meyer Bosman and Franco
van der Merwe both coming close to crossing the line on either corner.

The Sharks finally managed to score points courtesy of two penalties, both
120 seconds apart and both conceded by Crockett.

Lambie landed both before the hour mark as the Sharks retook the lead for the
first time since early in the game, before Bleyendaal sent over three more points
for the Crusaders when the Sharks forwards failed to roll out of the way.

With 11 minutes to play, the home side won a scrum penalty right in front,
allowing Lambie to kick them back into the lead.

And the Sharks then managed to stay in fron while Bleyendaal missed two long-range
attempts and the Springbok flyhalf added another penalty to finish the scoring.

Final Score Sharks 21 (9) Crusaders 17 (11)

Scorers

Sharks
Tries –
Pen – P.Lambie 7
Con –
Drop –
Cards –

Crusaders
Tries – A.Ellis
Pen – T. Bleyendaal 4
Con –
Drop –
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee
: Lourens van der Merwe
Assistant Ref 1:Marius Jonker

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