Lions denied incredible comeback

10 May 2014
Lions denied incredible comeback

Elton Jantjies missed a last-minute conversion to hand the Highlanders a 23-22 victory over the Lions in Dunedin on Saturday.

In what proved to be a ding-dong battle, it was one-way traffic in the first half as the Highlanders scored 23 unanswered points, including three tries, before the interval.

An incredible finish was tinged with controversy after the Lions were denied a try by the TMO right under the posts in the dying minutes as Vinny Munro could not find clear evidence that Rudi Mathee had touched the ball against the post padding.

Skosan scored the Lions' fourth try shortly afterwards but the conversion from out wide - as opposed to directly in front of the posts - proved too much for Jantjies.

Richard Buckman touched down twice and Gareth Evans added another in the first half as the Highlanders exploited some shaky defence from the men in red.

But a change in tactics saw the Lions take a far more direct approach after the break. Their execution was markedly better too as Faf de Klerk, Lionel Mapoe and Armand van der Merwe and Skosan all crossed the whitewash.

Inaccurate kicking ultimately cost the visitors as Marnitz Boshoff had uncharacteristically missed two previous conversions.