Lions upset Edinburgh in huge URC statement

Lions upset Edinburgh in huge URC statement

The Lions put in a strong effort, packed of grit and discipline, to defeat Edinburgh 22-19 at Dam Health Stadium on Friday night.

It was the tourists’ third straight victory on their European tour, and it will be remembered warmly for years to come.

During the first half, Edinburgh dominated, crossing the gainline on many occasions. The Lions defense, on the other hand, remained composed and scrambled with purpose to prevent any momentum gained by the Scottish.

Nonetheless, Edinburgh worked hard to score in the 19th minute, when a maul with backs in tow crashed over the whitewash, with Viliame Mata emerging from the chaos as the try-scorer.

Importantly, the Lions maintained their composure and concentration throughout the crucial final 10 minutes of the opening frame. It produced in a superb offensive line-out late in the half, with Andries Coetzee making the final steps beyond Edinburgh’s stretch defense to tie the scores.

Despite Edinburgh’s valiant efforts, the Lions could have finished the first 40 minutes in front, if not for the eight points the normally accurate Gianni Lombard left on the field.

With a spectacular finish in the corner 13 minutes into the second half, Darcy Graham extended his tournament-long try-scoring streak. Henco van Wyk, who had a terrific game, then displayed some of his own brilliance, breaking past the Edinburgh defense to tie the game with 20 minutes remaining.

The hosts then snatched the kick-off, forcing the Lions to concede a penalty. Mata, propelled by the maul, then crashed over for his brace, giving the hosts a 19-12 lead. The Lions, however, refused to relent, forcing Edinburgh back into their 22.

A well-executed line-out saw Man of the Match Franke Horn dot down, and Lombard converted to equalize the scores once more.

With 10 minutes to go, the Lions’ defense showed tremendous bravery and resolve to fight an onslaught from Edinburgh, rejecting three raids and then causing an error to force the Scottish team back onto their 5m line.

With five minutes remaining, Marius Louw folded himself over the ruck to win a penalty, which Lombard converted for a 22-19 advantage. The Joburgers refused to give up their hard-earned lead, holding on with vigour to secure an amazing victory.

Scorers:

Edinburgh (5) 19: Try: Mata (2), Graham; Conversions: Boffelli (2); Penalty:

Lions (5) 22: Tries: Coetzee, Van Wyk, Horn; Conversions: Lombard (2); Penalty: Lombard

»Lions upset Edinburgh in huge URC statement«

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