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Lions Ready For ‘Ugly’ Arm-Wrestle

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The Lions is the most free-spirited team in South Africa. However, they will have to get ‘down and dirty’ against the Hurricanes on Saturday.

To keep their play-off hopes alive, the Lions will need to win the physical contest against one of the most truculent teams in the competition.

Perhaps it is because Hurricanes coach John Plumtree has such a strong bond with South African rugby, given his extended run as a coach with the Sharks.

However, Lions forwards coach Phillip Lemmer feels he knows exactly what to expect from the New Zealand franchise when they meet at Ellis Park, in a Round 17 encounter.

“John Plumtree really focuses on the breakdown,” Lemmer told a media scrum in the build-up to Saturday’s showdown.

“They want to disrupt, they want to be ugly, they want to be in your face.

“Physically, up front, is where it starts,” he said.

The Lions are third in the South African conference and sixth overall.

However, defeat against the Hurricanes could easily see them drop out of the top-eight positions (play-off zone) by the end of the weekend.

“It’s almost like knock-outs already,” Lemmer said, adding: “We have to keep going and keep winning.

“We need to keep the team motivated and everybody on the same page, to do their best at the end.

“The log is so close and anything can still happen until the very last game, so you need to keep the ball [control of your destiny] in your own hands.

You don’t want to rely on other teams to win or lose at the end.”

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