Jake: Cheetahs are 'conservative'

Thu, 18 Jul 2013 08:10
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Brumbies coach Jake White said it is only a perception that the Cheetahs play an expansive game, labelling them as one of the most conservative sides.

Brumbies coach Jake White said it is only a perception that South Africa's Cheetahs play an expansive game, labelling them as one of Super Rugby's most conservative sides.

The Cheetahs are lining up for their first-ever play-offs against the Brumbies in Canberra on Sunday - and while many pundits believe they are the most entertaining South African team, former Springbok World Cup-winning coach White said he was not convinced.

"There's this perception, it's funny how it works, that certain teams score a lot of tries and they run from everywhere," White said.

"It's not the case at all. I think they are probably one of the most conservative teams in the competition.

"They don't play like Australian teams, they actually play more like South African teams."

The Cheetahs have scored 38 tries this year, less than many Australian or New Zealand sides other than the Western Force (26) and the Reds (31).

"They [Cheetahs] play exactly like the Reds. They kick as much as the Reds as well," he said.

"They kick a lot, they let you play in your own half, and if you make a mistake then they pounce."

The Cheetahs are chasing their first victory in five trips to Canberra against the Brumbies.

The Bloemfontein-based team - which beat both the Waratahs and Western Force during their regular season trip to Australia earlier this year - narrowly lost 23-24 on their last match in the Aussie capital.

The loser of Sunday's play-off is finished for the season, while the winner goes on to meet either holders Chiefs or the Bulls away in next week's semifinals.

AFP

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Brumbies 9 5 0 4 21
Waratahs 8 4 0 4 21
Reds 9 2 1 6 12
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Kings 7 1 0 6 4