We lost the game as opposed to the Bulls winning it
Cheetahs coach Naka Drotske felt his team cost themselves against the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld by deviating from the gameplan after half-time.
The Free State side saw their record run of five consecutive Super Rugby victories come to an end on Saturday with a tense 26-20 defeat in Pretoria.
Drotske said that it had been frustrating to see his team go down after taking the lead with a late try from prop Trevor Nyakane.
"I think we had the opportunity to win, but I think we made wrong decisions after half-time," Drotske said.
"Just after half-time we deviated from what we decided we wanted to do against the Bull," he explained.
A late penalty from replacement flyhalf Francois Brummer saw the Cheetahs take a bonus point from the encounter, but it was not enough to secure a sixth consecutive win.
"At the end, we got a bonus point back which could help us a lot at the end of the competition."
While the Cheetahs remained second in the SA conference, the Bulls drew level on points, and Drotske believed his side had thrown the game away.
"I definitely thought we lost the game as opposed to the Bulls winning it," he said.
"I thought in defence we handed them the advantage line in the first half, and in the second half we were better but we made too many handling errors which led directly to their two tries
"I though the game was there to win and we let it slip, but it's still a long season," he added.