Planet Rugby

Brumbies beaten in Bloemfontein

29th April 2011 17:39

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Sarel Pretorius cheetahs brumbies 2011

Two tries: Sarel Pretorius

The Cheetahs almost squandered a massive lead but held on for a 47-36 Super Rugby win over the Brumbies in Bloemfontein on Friday.

The Cheetahs led 32-26 at half time, but the game really should have been over as a contest after 20 minutes.

After seeing the Cheetahs charge to a 25-0 lead, the Brumbies clawed their way back into contention and actually outscored their hosts five tries to four.

However five second-half penalties from fly-half Sias Ebersohn eventually saw the Cheetahs home as they clinched their second win of the season.

We expected a high-scored game and were weren't disappointed as, once again, the Cheetahs conspired to give away soft tries.

By the time the half-time hooter sounded both teams had already bagged a four-try bonus point and were separated only by two massive drop goals from Cheetahs full-back Riaan Viljoen.

The home side raced to 25-0 lead inside the first quarter as loosehead Coenie Oosthuizen, scrum-half Sarel Pretorius and tighthead WP Nel all touched down while Viljoen nailed two drops, including one from his own half.

While the Cheetahs had been rampant in the first 20 minutes, the second quarter belonged to the Brumbies, who cashed in on some woeful defending from their hosts.

Francis Fainifo got the ball rolling when he pierced the midfield to score under the sticks.

Pretorius got his second for the Cheetahs before Brumbies finally found some rhythm and cohesion as Ben Alexander, Michael Hooper and Adam Ashley-Cooper added their names to the scorecard.

After the restart fly-half Sias Ebersohn opened the gap to 41-29 with three penalties to Matt Giteau's one.

When Josh Valentine snuck through the inside channel and set up Robbie Coleman to score with his first touch of the ball, the gap was reduced to just five points.

But, for the first time this season, the Cheetahs managed to keep their composure in the last quarter as Ebersohn could add two more penalties to seal the deal.

The scorers:

For the Cheetahs:
Tries: Oosthuizen, Pretorius 2, Nel
Cons: S. Ebersohn 3
Pens: S. Ebersohn 5
Drops: Viljoen 2

For the Brumbies:
Tries: Fainifo, Alexander, Hooper, Ashley-Cooper, Coleman
Cons: Giteau 4
Pen: Giteau

Yellow card: Lealiifano (Brumbies - 63rd min - tip tackle)

The teams:

Cheetahs: 15 Riaan Viljoen, 14 Philip Burger, 13 Robert Ebersohn, 12 Corne Uys, 11 Ryno Benjamin, 10 Sias Ebersohn, 9 Sarel Pretorius, 8 Ashley Johnson, 7 Davon Raubenheimer, 6 Heinrich Brüssow, 5 Wilhelm Steenkamp, 4 Francois Uys, 3 WP Nel, 2 Adriaan Strauss, 1 Coenie Oosthuizen.
Replacements: 16 Ryno Barnes, 17 Lourens Adriaanse, 18 Martin Muller, 19 Leon Karemaker, 20 Tewis de Bruyn, 21 Naas Olivier, 22 Hennie Daniller.

Brumbies: 15 Pat McCabe, 14 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 13 Andrew Smith, 12 Matt Giteau (c), 11 Francis Fainifo,10 Christian Lealiifano, 9 Pat Phibbs, 8 Colby Faingaa, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Mitchell Chapman, 5 Mark Chisholm, 4 Peter Kimlin, 3 Dan Palmer, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Ben Alexander.
Replacements: 16 Huia Edmonds, 17 Jono Owen, 18 Ben Hand, 19 Julian Salvi, 20 Josh Valentine, 21 Tyrone Smith, 22 Robbie Coleman.

Venue: Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein
Referee: Marius Jonker (South Africa)

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