Edinburgh beaten in Cape Town

Edinburgh beaten in Cape Town

Suleiman Hartzenberg scored a hat-trick of tries as the DHL Stormers claimed a 43-21 victory in Cape Town.

Edinburgh’s hopes of cutting the gap on fourth-placed Munster were dashed by a Stormers team that produced some thrilling rugby.

Leolin Zas and Evan Roos touched down twice, with Manie Libbok kicking three conversions and Jurie Matthee one, as the Stormers secured a bonus point before half-time.

Edinburgh posted tries by wing Jake Henry, number eight Bill Mata and replacement hooker Paddy Harrison, all converted by Ben Healy.

The Stormers made a flying start and went ahead after 10 minutes when they attacked from deep, before Libbok’s kick into space was gathered by Hartzenberg and he crossed unopposed.

Libbok added the conversion but Edinburgh were unfazed and they hit back through debutant Henry, who gathered a loose ball 20 metres out and sprinted clear for a try which Healy converted.

Both teams had made their attacking intentions clear and the Stormers struck again when scrum-half Paul de Wet fired out a long pass to full-back Damien Willemse, who perfectly timed a scoring delivery to Hartzenberg.

Libbok’s touchline conversion went over via the post and crossbar and he turned creator again just before half-time when another clever tactical kick caused confusion in Edinburgh’s defence.

With the ball taking a fortunate bounce, Zas enjoyed a simple run-in as Stormers extended their lead to 12 points just before the break.

There was still time for Edinburgh to put themselves back in contention, with Mata charging over from the back of a lineout.

Healy’s conversion made it 19-14 but brilliant handling by the Stormers created a bonus-point try for Zas that Matthee converted as he took over kicking duties while Libbok received treatment for a head wound.

Stormers continued to impress in the second period as Hartzenberg finished off another fine handling move to complete his hat-trick, before Roos powered over for a simple score.

Harrison’s score briefly gave Edinburgh hope of a possible losing bonus point but that was extinguished by Roos completing his try double.

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