Sides at their final preparations for IRB Tbilisi Cup round 2



Preview of Round 2 of IRB Tbilisi Cup 2013


Emerging Ireland vs. South African President’s XV


Emerging Ireland and South African President’s XV will kick off Round 2 of the Tbilisi Cup tomorrow evening when they go head to head at the Avchala Stadium.


Both sides come into the contest off the back of opening round victories. The South African President’s XV scored six tries to see off a spirited Uruguayan outfit with Emerging Ireland coming from behind to beat the Georgians in a hard fought contest.  


Victory for either side will see them in pole position to win the inaugural Tbilisi Cup, however neither Allen Clarke nor Jimmy Stonehouse, the coaches of Emerging Ireland and South African President’s XV respectively, are allowing their players to think past tomorrow evening’s fixture.


Jimmy Stonehouse said: “The Irish are a good side with a squad of players with provincial rugby experience. They will be physical, they have a powerful back five in the scrum and if we can compete at set piece then if think we can give them a run for their money.


“We have made a few changes for this game, including the front row, which was always the plan. We have been forced into a change at number 8 with the injury to Renaldo Bothma. He is replaced by Zandre Jordaan.”


Allen Clarke, Coach of Emerging Ireland, was pleased with the character his side showed to fight back and win against the host nation last Friday. He said: “It was a huge test. Georgia were in their own back yard and had the crowd behind them. Psychologically and physically it was a big ask for a young squad. It is great to have that game under our belt and we have identified the areas we need to improve ahead of tomorrow night.


“It will be a difficult game against the South African’s, they are experienced and physical and we have to try and match that and impose our game on them.”


Georgia vs. Uruguay


Georgia and Uruguay will meet in the second game tomorrow evening with both sides striving for a more disciplined performance than in their opening games last week.


The Georgians led 15-14 against Emerging Ireland with seven minutes left but were denied victory thanks to two late Irish penalties. The South Americans started very well against South Africa but could not sustain that intensity for the full 80 minutes.


The Lelos will be looking to ensure their discipline is much better than it was on Friday night according to coach, Milton Haig. He said: “Our discipline cost us against the Irish team so this is a priority for us now for the Uruguay match; we need to be disciplined throughout the match. The Irish put us under a lot of pressure and I was pleased with the way handled that challenge.


“We made four or five good line breaks and failed to execute the final pass. We need to ensure we are clinical in these areas going forward when we have them.”


Uruguay have moved Nicolas Klappenbach to hooker and he will captain the side from the front row. Elsewhere, Alejo Duran moves from scrum half to fly half with German Albanell coming in at scrum half.


Uruguay Coach Pablo Lemoine’s side are relishing the opportunity of playing  Georgia on their home ground but is well aware of the task his side face. He said: “The Georgians are a good side. They played well against Ireland the other night with a lot of intensity.


“Normally when people talk about Georgia they talk about their forward pack, however I was impressed with their backs against Emerging Ireland last Friday. I felt we played too close to the ruck against South Africa so we will look to play a more expansive game tomorrow. We also need to ensure we maintain our discipline.”

Georgian time


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