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Lions replace Mostert with 6 foot 7 inch Springbok

Franco Mostert on the charge against Leicester. (Getty Images)

The Lions, losing finalists for the past three years, have started the process of replacing the rash of departed Springboks.

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The Johannesburg-based franchise have lost several Springboks – such as Ruan Dreyer (to Gloucester), Rohan Janse van Rensburg (Sale Sharks), Jaco Kriel (Gloucester) and Franco Mostert (Gloucester) – as well as other established players like Marco Jansen van Vuuren (to SA Sevens squad) and Jacques van Rooyen (Bath)

The loss of star lock Mostert was the biggest blow.

However, the Lions revealed that he has been replaced by another Springbok second row forward – former Sharks lock Stephan Lewies.

The one-time Bok, who will turn 27 later this month, has was a regular starter for the Sharks since 2012.

However, he has been struggling with injuries in recent years.

His only Test was against Scotland in Port Elizabeth in 2014, when he came off the bench to replace captain Victor Matfield in South Africa’s 55-6 win.

In 2016 Lewies also featured for South Africa ‘A’ against the touring England Saxons team. The Lions open their 2019 campaign against the Jaguares in Buenos Aires on Saturday, February 16.

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They will play two pre-season matches – against the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld on January 26 and against the Sharks in Cape Town on February 3.

Gloucester Rugby confirmd the signing of South African international lock Franco Mostert from the Lions in May, a move which was initially disputed.

Springbok second row Mostert arrived in the form of his life after playing a key part in the Lions’ march to the 2017 Super Rugby final, and was eveb named in the South African squad for the summer test series with England.

In the current Super Rugby campaign, Mostert had been an ever-present for the Johannesburg based outfit, displaying his leadership skills in captaining the side, and his versatility operating at both flanker and in the more familiar second row.

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Jon 22 minutes ago
How Maro Itoje terrorised the All Blacks lineout

Yeah England were much smarter, they put their much vaster experience to use in both the scrum (bending/not taking hit) and lineout (Itoje early sacks) law vagaries. Really though, I know what is there, I’m more worried about Englands locks. We only got to see Itoje and Martin, right? Depth allround in the England camp was probably the difference in the series and the drop off when Itoje reached his minutes limit for the season (it was like the plug was pulled from the charger) was up their with keeping Sexton on the park in that quarter final. What happened there? You have a lot of watching hours experience with locks come blindsides Nick, especially with a typical Australian player make up, have you see a six the size of Barrett absolutely dominate the position and his opposition? I can easily see Scott, and even Martin for that matter, moving to the blindside and playing like Tadgh Beirne with the amount of top locks we have coming through to partner Patrick. Still with the English mindset, because despite running the best All Black team I’ve seen in a long time close, they do need to find improvement, and although I thought they had a lot of good performances from their 7’s, I really like the prospect of Cunningham-South in his 8 spot and Earl on the open. Can you see Martin as mobile enough to take over Lawes? I absolutely loved his aggression when Jordie ran upto him to try and grab the ball. That alone is enough reason for me to try him there.

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s
sean 2 hours ago
The bite don't match the bark

Yeah, he has a few good points… I disagree that our 7s haven't done anything, we won Bronze in 2016, and we were virtually unplayable to the backend of the “teens” winning the series. 7s is far more competitive globally than Union, so it's fair to say we haven't dominated, but we are almost always contenders. But I do agree that our national side doesn't perform nearly as well as it should between World Cups, and I do agree that our supporters can be too passionate and the opitimity of what Rugby stands against. I have said so many times. And I also believe some context needs to be taken into account with Saturday's win for Ireland. They're a really good team! Settled coaching staff, and bar a few legends retiring, they've had a full season and plenty of time together. We have some youngsters being groomed for the future, have played only 3 games now under a new coaching team with new philosophies and game plans. I'm excited by what the future of this team holds, as much as I am disappointed by the result. But unlike this article suggests, I am never going to take away from what Ireland has achieved, is achieving, and where they're heading. As a Rugby fan, I love the tight games, like the last two weekends. As a Bok Super Fan, I agree we don't perform as well as we should. And as an aside, you come play a game at 7am on our fields, bud. -2°c and frost on the field that is as hard as concrete…. Then we’ll see just how tough you are. Well done Ireland! They played well, and gave our boys a lot to think about. That's what you want from the top two teams in the world. Rugby won. The fans of this greatbsport won. A'n bullshit like this article is why Rugby is losing its identity. I don't like soccer. This article perpetuates the soccer influences the game of Rugby is starting to see. It's why Wayne Barnes retired, feared for his family, and he isn't the only ref to say so. I have called out many Bok fans for being an embarrassment to the game, and I will continue to do so. Rugbypass.com, this article is close to the same bullshit. You should be better.

45 Go to comments
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FEATURE Mick Cleary: 'There is now a clear sense of identity about this England team.' Mick Cleary: 'There is now a clear sense of identity about this England team.'
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