Sports Reporter
2 minute read
22 Dec 2021
12:54 pm

Lions prepare for ‘attacking rugby’ in URC derbies

Sports Reporter

Ivan van Rooyen is looking forward to the excitement factor ahead of the series of local derbies commencing on January 22.

Lions coach Ivan van Rooyen looks on during a training session. Picture: Gallo Images

Lions head coach Ivan van Rooyen has expressed his delight over the latest rescheduling of United Rugby Championship (URC) fixtures.

New changes will see postponed fixtures from rounds six and seven, due to take place in South Africa, moved to the weekends of March 11/12 and 18/19, with the Johannesburg-based side facing Cardiff and Munster respectively on those dates.

In addition, the team will travel away to face Irish outfit Leinster on February 25 as part of the rescheduling of fixtures.

ALSO READ: URC schedule released – Home fixtures bonanza for SA teams

“We’re obviously quite pleased with the latest announcement by the URC as it gives us an opportunity to get stuck in and play rugby again,” Van Rooyen said.

“Having played five away games in the tournament thus far, we look forward to finally fronting up against local and European opposition with the majority of those games at Emirates Airline Park.”

ALSO READ: Lions hope to carry lessons into next leg of URC matches

Van Rooyen said he looked forward to the excitement factor ahead of the series of local derbies commencing on January 22, with the Lions hosting the Sharks.

“I believe there’ll be an urge to play attacking rugby come local derbies time,” he predicted.

“The emphasis on set-piece play and physicality are some of the key features of our local derbies. These fixtures always seem to carry a bit of spice, coupled with bragging rights as all four home franchises are keen to make an impression in this tournament”.

Van Rooyen was confident his side would not be short of motivation upon their return and would be raring to go.

“I reckon the guys will be motivated by the revised schedule. It’s an opportunity to build on our last performance in the competition before the break (a win over the Stormers earlier this month) which we were pretty pleased about,” he said.

“We will have a little over three weeks to prepare upon our return to training.”