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Rainbow Cup Saturday: wins for Stormers, Benetton and Cardiff Blues |  Rugby news


Benetton leads the standings after scoring three of three wins as the Stormers in South Africa held their nerve to beat the Lions

Last updated: 05/15/21 21:01 pm

Tim Swiel in action for the Stormers

The Stormers edged out the Lions in South Africa while Cardiff Blues saw Scarlets and Benetton go undefeated after their win over Zebre.

Lions 37-39 Stormers

Tim Swiel kept his cool to score the decisive penalty as the Stormers staged a dramatic late counterattack to beat the Lions 39-37 at Ellis Park.

The Lions looked poised for victory in their Rainbow Cup clash after taking a 37-29 lead with less than five minutes to go.

But center Dan Du Plessis scored a try to complete a brilliant shot that started deep in his team’s half of the field, with Swiel converting to make it a one-point game.

The Stormers, who were trailing 22-15 at halftime, pushed once more and were rewarded with the decisive penalty, which Swiel converted from the midrange.

Swiel’s heroism gave the Stormers their first win in the competition after two losses, while the Lions have now lost three straight.

Scarlets 28-29 Cardiff Blues

Jarrod Evans threw a late penalty to secure Cardiff Blues a third win this season against the Scarlets, winning 29-28 to Llanelli.

After scoring a double win in the Guinness PRO14, the Blues recorded a landslide victory to keep their hopes of progressing in the Rainbow Cup alive with a second loss for Scarlets which seriously dented their hopes.

Wales coach Wayne Pivac was in attendance and he was reportedly impressed with the performance of Blues half-backs Tomos Williams and Evans.

The Blues scored four tries thanks to Evans, Cory Hill, Hallam Amos and Josh Turnbull, Evans adding three conversions and a penalty.

Dane Blacker scored two tries for Scarlets. Leigh Halfpenny threw three penalties while Angus O’Brien scored a try and added two conversions.

Benetton Rugby 34-27 Zebre

Benetton improved his status as an unlikely Guinness PRO14 Rainbow Cup driver with a 34-27 victory over Zebre in Treviso.

Not having won a single game in the PRO14 regular season, Benetton are now the only team that can boast a 100% winning record after Munster’s loss to Connacht on Friday.

The bonus point victory, thanks to tries by Toa Halafihi, Monty Ioane, Gianmarco Lucchesi and Edoardo Padovani, sends Kieran Crowley’s men four points clear at the top of the table, with the eventual winners having to meet.
their South African counterparts in a North vs South final on June 19.

Hanging on to first place can be a tough task for Benetton, who will then host Connacht before traveling to face the Ospreys in their final game, but their back-to-back wins over Zebre and a shocking opening win over the Glasgow Warriors have them gave a platform they could not have dreamed of until the start of the tournament.

Blue Bulls 43-9 Sharks

The Bulls claimed three of three wins in the Guinness Pro14 Rainbow Cup SA with an impressive 43-9 victory over the Sharks.

It was a close game in the first half, with the Bulls leading 12-9 thanks to four penalties from Morne Steyn to three from Curwin Bosch.

The glut of points for home side Loftus Versfeld started with a 52nd-minute try from Lizo Gqoboka, which was converted by Steyn, who then added another penalty.

Stravino Jacobs scored the Bulls’ second try in the 66th minute, also converted by Steyn, and a final blow earned them a bonus point.

Schalk Erasmus crossed in the 76th minute and substitute Chris Smith did the same three minutes later, Smith converting both tries.

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