• Hendrikse to handle Ospreys, Roos to revel in Ulster clash


    Expect something special from Lions flyhalf Jordan Henrikse in the United Rugby Championships this weekend.

    Ahead of Round 14 of the URC, Mark Keohane & Oliver Keohane sat down with SA Rugby Magazine editor Zelim Nel to discuss the four South African matches. All three of us agreed it will be another full house for South Africa.

    As soon as the South African franchises were able to play host, finally, to the teams from up north, a more accurate narrative began to emerge around the quality of the teams of involved in the URC. Despite a tough start to the tournament, where South African teams were without their internationals and only playing travelling games, the last two weeks have seen them secure eight wins from eight home matches.

    This weekend offers a great test for the Stormers, who will face an Ulster side strengthened by eight of their nine current international players, and with Springbok eighthman Duane Vermeulen at the back of the scrum.

    It will be a fine test not only of the Stormers current quality, but of young Evan Roos’ capacity and potential as a Test number 8. As Zelim put it in our video, “It’s easy to throw players around in the Currie Cup and perhaps against Cardiff, let’s see how he fairs against Duane.” 18 months ago, when Roos fronted Duane in a Stormers match against the Bulls, he was impressive. This weekend will be a good marker of how far along he is in terms of delivering on his promise.

    The Lions came back brilliantly last weekend to beat Munster 23-21, and young Jordan Hendrikse handled proceedings calmly to to kick the home to victory despite being down 14-0 early on. Hendrikse, a physical flyhalf with a fantastic boot, will be pivotal to the Lions beating 9th place Ospreys, who have had a decent season but have not travelled particularly well.

    We also previewed the Bulls match up against 15th placed Dragons, who have only won one game so far in the tournament as well as the Sharks clash against Edinburgh, who sit just one place and three points above them, meaning a bonus-point win could take the Sharks to 5th on the log.

    Catch all our comments below, in our URC Preview video

    Photo: Ryan Hiscott/INPHO/Shutterstock

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