Cheetahs ready to be No.1

Sun, 21 Apr 2013 15:02
Large raymond rhule   willie le r Large naka drotske presser Large pieter labuschagne cheetahs Large naka drotske gestures Large raymond rhule cheetahs try

Cheetahs coach Naka Drotské gelt his side is in a good position to challenge for top honours in the South African Super Rugby conference.

Cheetahs coach Naka Drotské felt his side is in a good position to challenge for top honours in the South African Super Rugby conference.

Speaking after winning a dour arm-wrestle with the Sharks in dire conditions in Durban at the weekend, Drotské said his team could be SA's shining light for the first time.

A late Willie le Roux try, and a first half score by Raymond Rhule led the Free Staters to a 12-6 win at a wet and cold Kings Park, where two Patrick Lambie penalties either side of the interval had kept the hosts in the game.

The result temporarily moved the visitors to the top of the domestic conference and third overall, but they had slipped to sixth on the combined standings by the end of the weekend, after the Bulls' 34-0 triumph over the Kings in Port Elizabeth.

"I thought if we wanted to compete in the conference and end first, then winning here will be crucial," Drotské said after the win, only the third ever for the Cheetahs on the east coast.

"It was said before the last two weeks we needed to win one of the two, either against the Bulls in Pretoria or here in Durban and it happened.

"So it's a good position to be in, but there's still a long way to go."

The men from Bloemfontein, who have now won six of their last seven matches, have never qualified for the Super Rugby play-offs, with their best position coming in 1997 when they finished seventh in a 12-team format.

"We knew before the season it's going to be tough, starting with the Sharks in Bloem and then the Chiefs, two teams that played in the final last year," he said.

"We were under a lot of pressure, especially after we lost that second game 3-45 [in Hamilton], but the players pulled it back and we won three on tour.

"I guess when you start winning it becomes a habit."


Highlanders vs Crusaders
sast: 08h35 | local: 19h35

  • 0 | 0
Sat, 17 March 2018
Brumbies v Sharks 08h45 Canberra
Italy v Scotland 12h30 Rome
Stormers v Blues 13h05 Newlands
England v Ireland 14h45 Twickenham Stadium
Lions v Sunwolves 15h15 Johannesburg
Wales v France 17h00 Cardiff
Jaguares v Reds 21h40 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
Sun, 18 March 2018
Waratahs v Rebels 05h05 Sydney
Fri, 23 March 2018
Connacht v Edinburgh 22h00 Sportsground
Munster v Scarlets 22h00 Thomond Park
Dragons v Cheetahs 22h00 Rodney Parade
Ospreys v Leinster 22h00 Liberty Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Ulster 22h00 Cardiff Arms Park
Glasgow Warriors v Zebre 22h00 Scotstoun
Kings v Treviso 22h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Crusaders v Bulls 06h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Sharks 08h45 Melbourne
Bath v Exeter Chiefs 19h45 Recreation Ground
Sat, 24 March 2018
Sunwolves v Chiefs 04h15 Tokyo
Fri, 16 March 2018
Edinburgh v Munster 12 | 6
Cardiff Blues v Treviso 31 | 25
Chiefs v Bulls 41 | 28
Sun, 11 March 2018
Wales v Italy 38 | 14
Sat, 10 March 2018
Jaguares v Waratahs 38 | 28
France v England 22 | 16
Lions v Blues 35 | 38
Ireland v Scotland 28 | 8
Sharks v Sunwolves 50 | 22
Reds v Bulls 20 | 14
Hurricanes v Crusaders 29 | 19
Fri, 09 March 2018
Scarlets v Leinster 10 | 10
Rebels v Brumbies 33 | 10
Highlanders v Stormers 33 | 15
Mon, 05 March 2018
Maties v UCT-Ikeys 38 | 14
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Rebels 3 3 0 0 15
Reds 3 2 0 1 8
Waratahs 3 1 1 1 6
Brumbies 3 1 0 2 4
Sunwolves 3 0 0 3 1
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Hurricanes 3 1 0 2 10
Crusaders 3 2 0 1 10
Highlanders 2 2 0 0 9
Blues 3 1 0 2 6
Chiefs 3 2 0 1 8
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 4 3 0 1 15
Sharks 3 1 1 1 8
Bulls 4 1 0 3 5
Stormers 4 1 0 3 5
Jaguares 4 1 0 3 4