Ross Roche
Senior sports writer
2 minute read
21 Dec 2021
9:39 am

Lions hope to carry lessons into next leg of URC matches

Ross Roche

Returning to action next month, flank Vincent Tshituka says the Lions must take their chances in upcoming home fixtures.

Vincent Tshituka scores a try for the LIons in their recent URC clash against the Stormers. Picture: Gallo Images

The Lions will be aiming to learn and grow from their wobbly start in the United Rugby Championship when they get their campaign back under way in January.

Despite the challenge of playing overseas, winning two and losing three of their first five games this year, the Lions did front up well and suffered only one really poor defeat against Scarlets.

Flank Vincent Tshituka admitted the results could have been a lot better if the Lions had taken their chances.

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“We faced different challenges in all three of the games [we lost],” Tshituka said.

“One consistent one was that we put a big emphasis on turning possession into points and to make use of the opportunities that we get.

“If we could have converted all our opportunities into points it would have put us in a much better position in those games. There are other facets of the game that need improvement but that was the main one.

“As a team we have been consistently and steadily improving and we will only get better throughout this campaign. Week in and week out we try to minimise our errors and build on our strengths, and that is something we will continue to do.”

With the fixtures until round 17 of the URC having been confirmed, the Lions will finally be able to play their first home games of the competition as they host their fellow SA teams over three of the four weeks of local derby action.

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They will then take on Leinster in Dublin at the end of February, before enjoying two months of home fixtures against UK and Italian opposition in March and April.

“Everybody knows that there are massive challenges playing on foreign soil, so I personally am really looking forward to playing some home games,” said Tshituka.

“It has been a very long time since we have played at home and used our home ground advantage, so that is something I think not only myself but the team is looking forward too.

“But so far the URC campaign has been amazing. It has been a great experience playing against different players in a different competition and different league in a different country, so I think everything about it screams new and exciting and that’s exactly what I want to be a part of.”