Soul-searching Cheetahs on course

Tue, 02 Jul 2013 10:13
Large cheetahs bench Large cheetahs bench.jpg630 Large stormers v cheetahs

The Cheetahs did a lot of 'soul-searching' as they look for the elusive win that will secure them a Super Rugby play-off spot for the first time.
 

The Cheetahs did a lot of 'soul-searching' as they look for the elusive win that will secure them a Super Rugby play-off spot for the first time.

Following their disappointing 3-28 loss to the Stormers at the weekend, the Cheetahs now have to beat the hard-running Blues outfit in Bloemfontein this coming Saturday to secure a top six finish.

It is the Cheetahs' last league fixture, with a bye (and four points) coming in Week 20.

However, they are one win short of a guaranteed play-off place and the Blues are the hurdle to overcome.

"Luckily we do have a second bite at the cherry," Cheetahs assistant coach Hawies Fourie told this website - when asked about the men from Bloemfontein's stated goal of securing a spot in the play-offs for the first time since they divorced the Lions (in 2006), after the unhappy marriage that was the Cats.

Fourie described to trip to Newlands last week as a "poor performance".

"We shot ourselves in the foot," he told this website, adding: "All credit to the Stormers, they played well.

"However, we had a good look at ourselves and the general feeling is that we let ourselves down.

"Not once, from set pieces, did we retain the ball through more than three phases before we made a mistake. Against a quality team like the Stormers, especially one with such a sound defence, you simply don't get away with that [kind of performance].

"We also conceded hopelessly too many penalties [14]."

Cheetahs coach Naka Drotské, at the weekend, made mention of the fact that his team always seem to struggle after a break.

The loss to the Stormers was the first round of Super Rugby action since the June international window.

Fourie said they are not sure what causes these post-break lapses.

"We started training last week with the players who were with us and not in the Springbok squad, whereas the week before the [loss to] the Hurricanes [which came after a bye week] we only started training the Monday before the match," Fourie said.

"It is a tough question to answer, as we trained well and the intensity was great.

"On the day we simply didn't pitch [up]," he said, adding: "The first quarter we didn't play too badly, but we didn't score any points.

"We made five errors inside the Stormers 22 that cost us."

By Jan de Koning

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 27 April 2018
Hurricanes v Sunwolves 07h35 Wellington
Stormers v Rebels 13h00 Newlands
Leicester Tigers v Newcastle Falcons 18h45 Welford Road
Sat, 28 April 2018
Reds v Lions 05h05 Suncorp Stadium
Blues v Jaguares 07h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Crusaders 09h45 Canberra
Kings v Cheetahs 13h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Exeter Chiefs v Sale Sharks 14h00 Sandy Park
Worcester Warriors v Harlequins 14h00 Sixways
Gloucester v Bath 14h00 Kingsholm
Connacht v Leinster 14h05 Sportsground
Dragons v Scarlets 14h05 Rodney Parade
Bulls v Highlanders 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Treviso v Zebre 16h00 Stadio Monigo
Cardiff Blues v Ospreys 16h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Munster v Ulster 16h35 Thomond Park
Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 Myreside
Sun, 29 April 2018
London Irish v Saracens 14h00 Madejski Stadium
Wasps v Northampton Saints 14h00 Ricoh Arena
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 22 April 2018
Racing Metro v Munster 27 | 22
Brumbies v Jaguares 20 | 25
Sat, 21 April 2018
Ulster v Glasgow Warriors 36 | 15
Zebre v Ospreys 37 | 14
Sharks v Stormers 24 | 17
Leinster v Scarlets 38 | 16
Bulls v Rebels 28 | 10
Reds v Chiefs 12 | 36
Crusaders v Sunwolves 33 | 11
Fri, 20 April 2018
Waratahs v Lions 0 | 29
Blues v Highlanders 16 | 34
Sun, 15 April 2018
Saracens v Bath 41 | 6
London Irish v Exeter Chiefs 5 | 45
Sat, 14 April 2018
Leinster v Treviso 15 | 17
Kings v Cardiff Blues 12 | 45
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Waratahs 8 5 1 2 24
Rebels 87 4 0 4 21
Brumbies 8 3 0 5 15
Reds 8 3 0 5 13
Sunwolves 8 0 0 8 2
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 8 6 0 2 29
Hurricanes 7 6 0 1 27
Chiefs 8 6 0 2 26
Highlanders 7 5 0 2 24
Blues 8 2 0 6 12
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 9 6 0 3 30
Bulls 8 4 0 4 19
Sharks 9 3 1 5 18
Jaguares 9 4 0 5 16
Stormers 9 3 0 6 14