Languid Cheetahs under no illusions

Wed, 19 Mar 2014 07:39
Large adriaan strauss cheetahs tr

The Cheetahs know they have a monumental mountain to climb if they are to end their three-match losing streak on their Australasian tour.

The Cheetahs know they have a monumental mountain to climb if they are to end their three-match losing streak on their Australasian tour.

However, the players and management from last-placed Bloemfontein-based outfit, remain resolute in their believe that the turning point on a bitterly disappointing season is just around the corner.

Assistant coach Hawies Fourie, speaking to this website from the team's training base in Auckland, ahead of their Round Six Super Rugby encounter with the Blues on Saturday, said the Cheetahs will have to "make a big step up" from their recent performances.

Disappointing defeats against the Rebels (14-35), Reds (33-43) and Hurricanes (27-60) - in the wake of their only win of the season, 15-9 over the Bulls in monsoon-like conditions in Bloemfontein - have left the Cheetahs stick at the foot of the standings.

"We know we are under pressure," Fourie told this website, adding: "We had high expectations of the season and the tour and we have not played well at all.

"We are under no illusions that we will have to show massive improvements."

He added that they are well aware that the Blues remain a very dangerous team, despite losing to both the Bulls and Lions on their just completed tour of South Africa.

"Against the Crusaders [in Week Three] they were down 3-17 [after half-an-hour] and won rather comfortably [35-24, after scoring 29 unanswered points in a 20-minute blitz]," the Cheetahs' backline mentor pointed out.

"They are a side against you can't afford to relax for a single moment.

"Against the Lions this [past] weekend it was the same - they were trailing by 20 points [0-20 early in the second half] and came close to winning [eventually losing 36-39].

"They have exceptionally dangerous outside backs."

Fourie said the Cheetahs simply can't afford to allow the Blues any space.

"We will have to improve on defence," he said, adding: "Our one-on-one tackles are simply not good enough and teams all too easily get momentum against us and quick ball at the breakdown.

"We will have to make a big step up in that regard."

By Jan de Koning

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 28 April 2017
Highlanders v Stormers 07h35 Dunedin
Cardiff Blues v Zebre 18h05 Cardiff
Edinburgh v Dragons 18h35 Myreside
Leinster v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 RDS Arena
Newcastle Falcons v Worcester Warriors 19h00 Kingston Park
Sat, 29 April 2017
Chiefs v Sunwolves 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Waratahs 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Force v Lions 11h55 Perth
Ospreys v Ulster 14h00 Liberty Stadium
Bath v Gloucester 14h00 Recreation Ground
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Saracens v Bristol 14h00 Allianz Park
Harlequins v Wasps 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks 14h00 Welford Road
Cheetahs v Crusaders 15h15 Bloemfontein
Treviso v Munster 17h05 Stadio Monigo
Kings v Rebels 17h30 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Connacht v Scarlets 18h35 Sportsground
Jaguares v Sharks 19h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 30 April 2017
Brumbies v Blues 06h05 Canberra
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 23 April 2017
Clermont Auvergne v Leinster 27 | 22
Sat, 22 April 2017
Sharks v Rebels 9 | 9
Bulls v Cheetahs 20 | 14
Munster v Saracens 10 | 26
Force v Chiefs 7 | 16
Crusaders v Stormers 57 | 24
Highlanders v Sunwolves 40 | 15
Fri, 21 April 2017
Lions v Jaguares 24 | 21
Waratahs v Kings 24 | 26
Hurricanes v Brumbies 56 | 21
Mon, 17 April 2017
UP-Tuks v Maties 28 | 21
Sun, 16 April 2017
Bristol v Wasps 21 | 36
Northampton Saints v Saracens 25 | 27
Sat, 15 April 2017
Connacht v Leinster 24 | 37
Treviso v Edinburgh 21 | 6
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 8 3 0 5 17
Reds 8 2 0 6 10
Force 7 2 0 5 9
Waratahs 8 2 0 6 9
Rebels 7 1 1 5 7
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 8 8 0 0 36
Hurricanes 8 7 0 1 33
Chiefs 8 7 0 1 33
Highlanders 8 5 0 3 23
Blues 8 3 0 5 17
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 8 6 0 2 26
Bulls 8 3 0 5 14
Cheetahs 8 2 0 6 10
Sunwolves 8 1 0 7 5
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 8 7 0 1 32
Sharks 8 5 1 2 24
Jaguares 8 4 0 4 20
Kings 8 2 0 6 10