In a very entertaining encounter an impressive performance from Toyoya Free State Cheetahs XV saw them leading DHL Western Provinceby 16 points with 14 minutes to play, but a yellow card to flank Albertus de Bod proved very costly as DHL WP scored 17 points before he returned and added a late penalty goal to seal the comeback.
DHL WP flyhalf Abner van Reenen was in deadly kicking form, slotting all six of his shots at goal, three conversions and three penalty goals, for a haul of 15 points to help his side claim the victory.
The bonus point win sees DHL Western Province seal their place in the competition semi-finals, as they move back top of the South Section on 29 points, with only the Boland Cavaliers in second place on 25 points able to catch them.
The two bonus points gained for losing within seven and scoring more than four tries keep Toyota Free State Cheetahs XV in the running as well in third on 22 points, but they will need the Cavaliers to slip up over the final weekend of pool games while they will need to win if they are to stand any chance of progressing to the knock outs.
In the match Toyota Free State Cheetahs XV got off to a storming start as No 8 Jasper Wiese and right wing Darren Adonis ran over for early scores, with flyhalf Lubabalo Dobela slotting one conversion to take a 12-0 lead after just seven minutes.
DHL Western Province then started to work their way back into the match as van Reenen slotted his first conversion in the 13th minute and seven minutes later EW Viljoen got over for their first try, attacking from a line out deep in Toyota Free State Cheetahs XV's 22m and diving over next to the uprights, with van Reenen's extras making it 12-10.
The DHL Western Province scrum had been dominant during the opening 30 minutes and that saw Toyota Free State Cheetahs XV replace their whole front row on the half hour mark.
That seemed to reinvigorate them and replacement prop Gunther Janse van Vuuren crashed over next to the uprights in the 36th minute, with Dobela slotting the conversion to put Toyota Free State Cheetahs XV 19-10 up.
DHL Western Province then had a chance to finish the half with a try, but flank Nama Xaba lost the ball over the line on the stroke of half time, leaving them nine points behind at the break.
The Capetonians then started the second half well and in the 48th minute took a quick penalty in Toyota Free State Cheetahs XV's 22m, with lock Brandon Valentyn forcing his way over for a converted score.
Toyota Free State Cheetahs XV then came straight back, and were held up over the DHL Western Province line three times until centre Carel-Jan Coetzee finally smashed over in the 59th minute, with Dobela's extras putting them 26-17 up.
Five minutes later Toyota Free State Cheetahs XV attacked from their own half, with Dobela chipping and regathering before putting the flying Adonis away for a try in the right hand corner, with the conversion giving them a comfortable lead at 33-17.
However the yellow card to de Bod then followed in the 67th minute, giving DHL Western Province the impetus to fight back which they did through a scrum penalty try a minute later, a converted intercept try to replacement back Tristan Leyds in the 73rd and then two penalties on the 75th and 80th minutes to seal a famous comeback.
DHL Western Province - Tries: EW Viljoen, Brandon Valentyn, Penalty Try, Tristan Leyds. Conversions: Abner van Reenen (3). Penalties: Abner van Reenen (3).
Toyota Free State Cheetahs XV - Tries: Jasper Wiese, Darren Adonis (2), Gunther Janse van Vuuren, Carel-Jan Coetzee. Conversions: Lubabalo Dobela (4).