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."

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Griquas vs Blue Bulls
sast: 19h30 | local: 19h30

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sun, 23 July 2017
Pumas v Golden Lions 12h30 Nelspruit
Fri, 28 July 2017
Lions v Hurricanes 22h00 Ellis Park
Golden Lions v Griquas 17h00 Johannesburg
Sat, 29 July 2017
Crusaders v Chiefs 22h00 Christchurch
Sharks v Pumas 12h30 Durban
RESULT SCORE
Sat, 22 July 2017
Stormers v Chiefs 11 | 17
Lions v Sharks 23 | 21
Crusaders v Highlanders 17 | 0
Fri, 21 July 2017
Free State Cheetahs v Sharks 47 | 12
Brumbies v Hurricanes 16 | 35
Sat, 15 July 2017
Sharks v Lions 10 | 27
Bulls v Stormers 33 | 41
Force v Waratahs 40 | 11
Hurricanes v Crusaders 31 | 22
Chiefs v Brumbies 28 | 10
Sunwolves v Blues 43 | 21
Fri, 14 July 2017
Kings v Cheetahs 20 | 21
Rebels v Jaguares 29 | 32
Highlanders v Reds 40 | 17
Sat, 08 July 2017
Stormers v Sunwolves 52 | 15
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 15 6 0 9 34
Force 15 6 0 9 26
Reds 15 4 0 11 21
Waratahs 15 4 0 11 19
Rebels 15 1 1 13 9
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 15 14 0 1 63
Hurricanes 15 12 0 3 58
Chiefs 15 12 1 2 57
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 51
Blues 15 7 1 7 37
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 15 10 0 5 43
Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Bulls 15 4 0 11 20
Sunwolves 15 2 0 13 12
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 15 14 0 1 65
Sharks 15 9 1 5 42
Jaguares 15 7 0 8 33
Kings 15 6 0 9 28