Planet Rugby

Sharks do the business in Bloem

19th May 2012 14:51

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Cheetahs v Sharks Adrian Strauss

Sharks v Cheetahs: Five points to the visitors

The Sharks' recent resurgence continued when they claimed a deserved 34-20 win over the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein on Saturday.

The visitors started the match brilliantly when they scored a try from the kick off. The Durban-based side took the ball through 12 phases from deep inside their 22 before JP Pietersen rounded off in his opponents' left-hand corner.

Cheetahs fly-half Riaan Smit, who came into the side as a replacement for Sias Ebersohn, replied with two penalties for the home side before their captain Adriaan Strauss rounded off a fine team effort in the right-hand corner in the 32nd minute.

This gave the home side a 11-7 lead but the Sharks struck back with tries by Frederic Michalak in the 35th minute and Lwazi Mvovo on the stroke of half-time.

Michalak's try was a freakish effort when he beat Phillip van der Walt to a bouncing ball after the Cheetahs failed to deal with an up-and-under from Riaan Viljoen.

And Mvovo's five-pointer came after fine leadership from Sharks skipper Keegan Daniel.

The visitors were awarded a penalty after the Cheetahs went offside close to their try-line and Daniel opted to run the ball after the hooter had sounded to signal the break.

Mvovo got in for his try after the ball went through several pairs of hands in the Sharks back-line.

The 21-14 scoreline at the half-time was a fair reflection on the match but after an early penalty in the second half from Michalak, things almost came unstuck for the Sharks when Bismarck du Plessis was sent to the sin bin for a shoulder charge on an opponent.

During the Springbok hooker's time off the field Sias Ebersohn, who was on as Smit's replacement, slotted two penalties but the Cheetahs could not get over the visitors' try-line during this period.

After defending resiliently, during Du Plessis' stint on the sidelines, the Sharks went in search of their bonus point for scoring four tries and were rewarded in the 73rd minute when Meyer Bosman crossed over.

This knocked the wind out of the home side's sails and the Sharks have now moved into the play-off positions with this victory.

The scorers:

For Cheetahs:
Try: Adriaan Strauss
Pens: Smit 3, Ebersohn 2

For Sharks:
Tries: Mvovo, Pietersen, Michalak, Bosman
Cons: Michalak 4
Pens: Michalak 2

Yellow card: Bismarck du Plessis (53rd min - shoulder charge)

Cheetahs: 15 Hennie Daniller, 14 Cameron Jacobs, 13 Robert Ebersohn, 12 Andries Strauss, 11 Willie le Roux, 10 Riaan Smit, 9 Piet van Zyl, 8 Philip van der Walt, 7 Justin Downey, 6 Heinrich Brussow, 5 George Earle, 4 Izak van der Westhuizen, 3 WP Nel, 2 Adriaan Strauss (c), 1 Coenie Oosthuizen.
Replacements: 16 Hercu Liebenberg, 17 Trevor Nyakane, 18 Andries Ferreira, 19 Ashley Johnson, 20 Tewis de Bruyn, 21 Sias Ebersohn, 22 Philip Snyman.

Sharks: 15 Riaan Viljoen, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Paul Jordaan, 12 Tim Whitehead, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Patrick Lambie, 9 Charl McLeod, 8 Keegan Daniel (capt), 7 Marcell Coetzee, 6 Jacques Botes, 5 Anton Bresler, 4 Steven Sykes, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16 Craig Burden, 17 Wiehahn Herbst, 18 Willem Alberts, 19 Jean Deysel, 20 Ryan Kankowski, 21 Frederic Michalak, 22 Meyer Bosman.

Referee: Jonathan Kaplan (South Africa)

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