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Cheetahs beat Vodacom Bulls in Harare

by Tinashe Kusema
07 Feb 2016 at 07:48hrs | Views
Vodacom Bulls. (3) 10 - (14) 28 Toyota Cheetahs
THE Toyota Cheetahs beat their Super Rugby rivals in front of a small but appreciative crowd at the National Sports Stadium yesterday.

Neither the rain, the disappointment of a last minute withdrawal of all Springboks players by Bulls coach Nollis Marais nor a classic case of mistaken identity could ruin the day.

Marais defence was that he needed to give his first team regulars and Springboks capped players a rest as the Super Rugby season is just around the corner and could not risk any injuries.

The game began with as action swinging from side to side and the Cheetahs getting the support that was meant for the Bulls.

The Bulls wore their black and white kit while the Cheetahs wore blue, much to the confusion of local rugby fans.

With their new found support, the Cheetahs took full advantage surging to an early first half 14-3 lead courtesy of a brace of tries from right lock Reniel Hugo.

Fly-half Neil Marais converted both tries.

Despite some tough tackling and surges of speed and skill, the Bulls only had a penalty converted by Tian Schoeman to show for their first half effort.

The second stanza followed the same script with the Cheetahs dominating.

Cheetahs coach Franco Smith threw cold water on his team's win.

"The Bulls will think nothing of the loss and we will think nothing of the win too.

"The most important thing was this cup competition that we played, which is a good initiative and we are proud to have been part of it," he said.

His counterpart Marais was disappointed.

"It's always bad to lose, but we knew we had a young team going into the match today and they are certain things we need to work on now going forward.

"Our set pieces were not good enough, it is something we really need to work on," he said.

On his decision to leave out the Boks players Marais said, "I decided to leave out the Boks players because we have a game against the Lions next week and I wanted to give the younger guys a good look before then."



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