Jordan Hendrikse was unable to fit an additional time, 56-metre penalty because the Lions needed to accept a draw on Problem Cup debut in opposition to a spirited Dragons outfit in Johannesburg on Saturday afternoon.
Making their bow within the match, the Lions had been out to safe a successful begin for the South African sides however a relentless Dragons effort ensured there was nothing to separate the groups because the tie completed 31-31.
The draw secures three factors for the Lions as the main focus now shifts to their subsequent sport in opposition to Stade Francais within the Problem Cup earlier than returning to Vodacom United Rugby Championship responsibility in opposition to the Sharks in Durban.
An early penalty from the Lions’ Gianni Lombard was shortly nullified by means of the boot of Dragons flyhalf Sam Davies, kicking a penalty and changing fullback Jordan Williams’ attempt to hand the guests a 10-3 lead.
A attempt from Lombard, that he transformed, didn’t maintain the scores stage for lengthy as Dragons scrumhalf Rhodri Williams went over for the rating, re-establishing the guests’ lead.
Lions substitute prop, Asenathi Ntlabakanye stored the tit-for-tat style afloat as he crashed over for the hosts, however in a primary half of flyhalfs, Davies produced a self-converted attempt to hand the guests a 24-17 lead going into the break.
Changing Lombard at halftime, Hendrikse had a right away impression as his deft grubber was gathered by winger Edwill van der Merwe who darted over for the attempt earlier than Hendrikse added the extras to convey the hosts again stage.
Suppose you is likely to be within the mistaken competitors, Edwill ⚽️
Good chip and chase by the @LionsRugbyCo winger 🔥#ChallengeCupRugby #FIFAWorldCup pic.twitter.com/YZcDahMswM
— EPCR Problem Cup (@ChallengeCup_) December 10, 2022
Rolling again the years, Lions flanker Jaco Kriel tore by means of Dragons defenders earlier than offloading to an keen Van der Merwe who scored his second with Hendrikse slotting the conversion, handing the hosts the lead for the primary time since Lombard’s opening penalty.
However the guests weren’t completed but as Dragons’ centre Jack Dixon’s try to Davies’ conversion made it 31-31.
A Sixty fifth-minute yellow card to Lions substitute prop JP Smith, for a visit on an opposition participant, opened the door for relentless Dragons strain, however stable defence from the hosts stored the guests at bay because the Lions returned to full complement with out conceding.
Lombard had the possibility to grab victory for the hosts when the Lions had been awarded a penalty inside their very own half with the siren sounding within the background, however didn’t convert because the Dragons kicked the ball into contact for a 31-31 draw.