Ivan van Zyl hails Lions' fight in incredible win over Connacht

Ivan van Zyl hails Lions' fight in incredible win over Connacht

Lions head coach Ivan van Zyl was beaming with pride after his charges earned an unlikely United Rugby Championship victory away over Connacht.

The Johannesburg franchise became the first South African team to win in Galway in ten attempts when they stunned the Irish side 38-14 on Saturday night. 

The Lions' victory was made all the more impressive by the red card they suffered in just the 16th minute when prop Asenathi Ntlabakanye was given his marching orders. But the 14 Lions galvanised to run in six tries - including one in the 79th minute - against the shellshocked men in green.

"To see the fight, the work-rate, the effort was awesome, especially seeing guys having a crack in the 80th minute," said van Rooyen, as per rugby365.com.

"I felt from the beginning we were in it. The message [after the red card] was just to keep on going.

"It was dry which we didn't really expect. It was chilly. The wind was strong for us, but I think it was average for Galway. We expected it to be wet so to get this is a blessing.

"We knew coming into this two-game URC tour that we got to get as many points as possible. The log is so congested and there is obviously a bit of belief after a win like this. 

"It is important for us to enjoy tonight [Saturday] and reset and head to Wales. So, for the next job, it's just about getting on with it."

The Lions now fly over the Irish Sea to Swansea in Wales where Ospreys lie in wait. Following that, its another flight to Italy to face Benetton in a must-win Challenge Cup playoff on 6 April. 

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