Ackermann glad he can shave at last

06 August 2017 - 00:00 By KHANYISO TSHWAKU

When the Lions lost to the Jaguares in Buenos Aires on March 11, the players made a deal with outgoing coach Johan Ackermann not to shave his beard.
The Lions embarked on 16-match unbeaten run that was ended by the most successful Super Rugby unit.
It could have been that the Lions' winning formula disappeared with the lopping of Ackermann's mane.
At least it was going to guarantee him a kiss from his wife.
"It was a deal and I needed to stick to it. I think the happiest person is going to be my wife because it's been a fair few months since I've kissed her because of the beard. Now I can get one again."After taking the Lions from the bottom of the Super Rugby trough in 2014, this should have been Ackermann's crowning glory. However, he's seemingly accustomed to the bridesmaid role.
He was part of the Sharks side that fell to the Bulls in the first all-South African Super Rugby final a decade ago at Kings Park. Having shed a tear in the morning before the final, it seemed he had an inkling it wasn't going to be his day.
It turned out that way but he understood the vagaries of sport and how the gods have shafted him in the past.
"The sun will shine tomorrow and it'll be easier to move on," Ackermann said.
"Then again, it's not about me. It's about what God has got planned for me. If it means I must go away to make a difference elsewhere, then so be it. I trust in Swys de Bruin and I believe he can go a step further. He's got a quality group that's going to support him and be behind him. Leaving here is harder than what I thought it's going to be."

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