Cheetahs end regular season unbeaten
October 01, 2016

The Toyota Free State Cheetahs ended the regular season unbeaten as they hammered the Griquas 63-26 (halftime 42-12) in their Currie Cup Premier Division match at the Toyota Stadium in Bloemfontein on Saturday.

The Cheetahs continued their impressive form this season as they ran in nine tries to four to claim their eighth win from as many matches

There was not much at stake for either team in the match, with the Cheetahs having already assured themselves of finishing on top of the log while the Griquas were out of the running for a semifinal place.

The Cheetahs will host the Xerox Golden Lions in their semifinal.

The Griquas scored the first try of the game after just 13 seconds when the Cheetahs made a hash of collecting the opening kick-off with hooker Marius Fourie scooping up the ball before off-loading to outside centre Jonathan Francke who bulldozed his way over in the left-hand corner.

The Cheetahs finally got into their stride and, after winning a succession of penalties, just short of the Griquas’ tryline, referee Cwengile Jadezweni awarded the Cheetahs a penalty try in the 14th minute after the visitors transgressed at a scrum.

The home team then swept downfield, with a move that started on their own tryline, with the centre pairing of Nico Lee and Francois Venter featuring prominently, before flank Uzair Cassiem rounded off the move for a fine try.

The Cheetahs made it three tries in as many minutes as they scored another try with a move that started on their own tryline as they scored direct from the kick-off with scrumhalf Shaun Venter on hand to score the converted try as the hosts raced to a 21-5 lead.

The Griquas struck back after an attacking lineout saw scrumhalf Renier Botha dummy his way over from close range for a converted try.

But the Cheetahs scored their bonus-point try in the 32nd minute when flank Henco Venter waltzed his way over after the Griquas defence had been split wide open once again.

The hosts were back in full flow and they scored another try three minutes later when flyhalf Neil Marais twisted his way over in the corner.

Lee then took advantage of weak Griquas’ defence to score the host’s sixth try of the first half as the Cheetahs went to the break holding a commanding 42-12 lead.

The second half was a much more even contest and the Griquas opened in the scoring in the second stanza when inside centre Andre Swarts scrambled his way over before converting his own try.

Venter scored his second try, after 58 minutes, but the Griquas had some joy when No 8 Jason Fraser galloped clear from 40 metres out to score Griquas’ bonus-point try.

The Cheetahs had the last say in the game with replacement hooker Torsten van Jaarsveld and left wing Raymond Rhule scoring late tries.


Toyota Free State Cheetahs – Tries: Penalty Try, Uzair Cassiem, Shaun Venter (2), Henco Venter, Neil Marais, Nico Lee, Torsten van Jaarsveld, Raymond Rhule; Conversions: Neil Marais (6), Fred Zeilinga (3).

Griquas – Tries: Jonathan Francke, Renier Botha, Andre Swarts, Jason Fraser; Conversion: Swarts (3).

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