Golden Lions well placed for Currie Cup play offs

Golden Lions Currie Cup coach Johan Ackermann says that with just three weeks to go before the Currie Cup playoffs his team are well-placed after they beat the Pumas 29-15 in Johannesburg.

“We put ourselves in a good position, we are not in a position where we hope somebody loses,” Ackermann said as his side moved into first place on the log.

“So we have control now and we have two away matches against Griquas and the Sharks. Hopefully we can pick up points there and keep momentum.”

Although the Lions can slip into second place after all the weekend’s matches, the Lions demonstrated they were genuine title contenders.

The Pumas had few answers to the rampant Lions side that once again dazzled with the ball in hand.

The hosts romped to three tries in the first half before they added the bonus-point try shortly after the break.

Once they earned the full five points, the Lions took the foot off the petrol which also saw the match unravel in the final half-hour of play.

Ackermann said his charges’ loss of structure could have cost them dearly had the deficit been narrower and the opposition playing at their best.

“We will play teams that will punish you when you go to sleep and we were fortunate to have a big lead,” he said.

“We have to focus on that. We have to realise that you have be accurate with the small things before the scoreboard will tick over.

“Once we got that fourth try every guy wanted to pop and throw a 50/50 pass, so there is definitely a strong message we can take out of tonight’s game.”

The Pumas’ seemed to have hit a rough patch as they suffered two consecutive defeats on the road.

They will next face the pace-setting Western Province and the Blue Bulls at home in Mbombela before closing off the regular season against the EP Kings in Port Elizabeth.

While the Lions were in a strong position on the log, Ackermann admitted the remaining matches were somewhat of an unknown quantity.

“It will be tough games, and it will be unfamiliar territory for us because we haven’t played them and we don’t know what level we can expect,” Ackermann said as his side travel for their matches against Griquas and the Sharks before hosting the Free State Cheetahs.

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