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Lions mark promotion to Super Rugby with back-to-back wins, beat Stormers 34-10

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JOHANNESBURG - The Lions surprised again after their promotion back to Super Rugby with a thumping 34-10 win over the Stormers on Saturday, with deadly flyhalf Marnitz Boshoff kicking three dropped goals in his 29 points.

Centre Stefan Watermeyer scored a try in the second minute before Boshoff took over with a conversion, three drops and six penalties for his game-winning personal haul at Ellis Park.

Boshoff sealed a one-point win away at the Cheetahs in the first round off a last-minute drop and was near-faultless with the boot at home to give the Lions two wins from two, a start few expected in their first season back. It's more wins than the Lions managed all season in 2012 when they were relegated as South Africa's worst team.

Hooker Scarra Ntubeni's try for the Stormers in the 23rd and a conversion and penalty from Demetri Catrakilis had closed it to 22-10 at halftime and lifted the Cape Town-based visitors, but only briefly. The Stormers were kept scoreless in the second half of their opening game of the season by a committed Lions defence.

Stormers and Springboks captain Jean de Villiers called his team's performance "pretty disgusting."

Watermeyer scored after a scintillating break from Lions captain Warren Whiteley in the opening minutes, but Boshoff controlled the game from there.

His unerring boot landed drops in the fifth and eighth minutes as the Lions raced to a 19-0 lead in 20 minutes. He landed his third drop in the 61st after the Lions sucked up grinding pressure from the Stormers in the early part of the second half and he made certain of victory with his final two penalties in the last 10 minutes. Boshoff landed seven from seven off the kicking tee.

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Lions 34 (Stefan Watermeyer try; Marnitz Boshoff conversion, 6 penalties, 3 dropped goals) def. Stormers 10 (Scarra Ntubeni try; Demetri Catrakilis conversion, penalty). HT: 22-10.

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