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Anybody looking at the Gallagher Premiership results over the weekend could see that some teams managed the Six Nations break better than others, but as the Investec Champions Cup hoves into view on the calendars, the question arises: how are the South Africa teams doing after the break?

The answer is: very well. There is plenty to be excited about when it comes to international South African rugby at the moment, with the recent release of the first episode of Chasing the Sun 2, which will chart the country’s incredible journey to a second World Cup triumph in a row, and a mouth-watering home series against Ireland this summer to look forward to.

But with four wins out of four for the South African clubs in the United Rugby Championship at the weekend, all of whom are in either Investec Champions Cup or EPCR Challenge Cup Round of 16 action next weekend, there is plenty to look forward to on a club level as well.

So here’s how all the South African clubs in EPCR competition are getting on.

DHL Stormers

There was a star turn for Springbok international full-back Damien Willemse as DHL Stormers ran in seven tries on their way to a comfortable 43-21 win over Edinburgh Rugby, in preparation to host reigning Investec Champions Cup holders Stade Rochelais on Saturday April 6.

But it was not just the Springbok stars shining for the Capetonians, with DHL Stormers coach John Dobson purring at the star quality of centre Wandisile Simelane’s run-on debut – potentially a future international.

No.8 Evan Roos also looks to be getting back to his terrifying best after an inconsistent season with disciplinary and injury issue.

Vodacom Bulls

In Wales, the Vodacom Bulls bullied their way to a 38-10 win over Dragons RFC at Rodney Parade.

The Dragons were no match physically for the Bulls, for whom openside flanker Mpilo Gumede was everywhere.

Gumede was one of the emerging youngsters called into the Springboks’ alignment camp this week and celebrated in fine fashion, while two more experienced Springbok heads, Kurt-Lee Arendse and Willie le Roux, also stood out.

Vodacom Bulls host Lyon at Loftus Versfeld on April 6 in the Investec Champions Cup Round of 16.

Hollywoodbets Sharks

Hollywoodbets Sharks have had some well-documented struggles this season, but the front row especially shone against Ulster Rugby in a 22-12 win in Durban.

Tighthead prop Hanro Jacobs was dominant against former Springbok loosehead Steven Kitshoff, hooker Bongi Mbonambi was all over the park and Ox Nche, when he came on later in the game, was monstrous. In the backs, the confusingly named Ethan Hooker shone at centre.

Hollywoodbets Sharks host Zebre Parma in the EPCR Challenge Cup Round of 16 on Sunday April 7.

Emirates Lions

Emirates Lions made the long trip up to West Ireland to face Connacht Rugby as they also gear up for Italian opposition in the EPCR Challenge Cup Round of 16, when they will travel to Benetton Rugby on Saturday April 6.

A Connacht Rugby side missing several key players was no match for the rampant visitors, who racked up a 38-14 win featuring 18 tackles from fly-half Jordan Hendrikse, while wing Edwill van der Merwe counted 130m of gain with ball in hand along with his try and two assists.

Toyota Cheetahs

Toyota Cheetahs warmed up for their EPCR Challenge Cup Round of 16 match with a 38-7 win over the Boland Kavaliers in Bloemfontein in the SA Cup on Friday.

They will face ASM Clermont Auvergne in a thrilling match on Saturday April 6 in France.

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