Naka: A complete performance

2011-05-08 15:22

Johannesburg - Apart from a few individual errors in defence, Cheetahs coach Naka Drotské described his team's 53-14 Super Rugby dismantling of the Lions on Friday as a complete all-round performance.

"Other than the try we leaked at the end, I think the Lions deserved the other two they scored," Drotské said.

The Cheetahs' outstanding showing was spearheaded by their forwards who knew when to commit numbers to the rucks while showing consistency at set pieces.

"We have a well-balanced game plan at the moment and we are not attacking from the wrong areas, but there are still times when we tend to be more risky," Drotské admitted.

The former Springbok hooker also admitted to being frustrated by his team's bad luck in not having won more matches this season.

The Cheetahs were on the wrong end of photo-finish results against the Lions - in their first encounter - the Bulls and the Hurricanes while early season injuries prevented them from building steam.

Their improvement on attack was this week also matched in defence.

"We have scored close to 50 points in our last three matches and the problem was soft moments in defence, and tonight we sorted that out," Drotské said.

"I think there is still room for improvement (in defence) when you take into consideration that the next game is against the Crusaders."

Cheetahs backline coach Hawies Fourie said the side had a renewed confidence.

"It really makes a big difference to a team when your halfback pair is on fire," said Fourie.

Flyhalf Sias Ebersohn's tactical kicking kept the Lions pinned in their own half and he was in sublime form with the boot, not missing a single kick at goal.

Livewire scrumhalf Sarel Pretorius also played an important role in the decision-making department while a lot of credit should go to fullback Riaan Viljoen who was shifted to the wing when Philip Burger had to leave the field with a hamstring injury in the first half.

"Riaan is one of those players you can slot in at any position, I think he will do just as well at flank," Drotské said.

"He's a talented player who has incredible ball skills and he's strong.

"It is great to have players in your team that can step up and help wherever they are needed."

Looking ahead to next week's match against the Crusaders at home, Drotské again emphasised that his men would have to make a step up in defence.

The Crusaders secured a 20-14 victory over the Stormers in Cape Town on Saturday.

"Coming back from tour, we have showed some really good signs on attack so the key against the Crusaders next week will be our defence," he said.

"It is not going to be easy, but we have beaten them in the past in Bloemfontein and we are going to have another crack at it."


  • SAFFA-CAT - 2011-05-08 16:11

    @Wagga - wherever you are mate: I thought your chaps were sublime on Friday evening. Playing such attractive rugby. Anyone else notice the many Cheetahs doing the offload Sonny Bill style? Good on them! May they give the depleted and exhausted Saders a hindkick this weekend! Smell an upset anyone? Just hope Naka is putting in huge defensive work this week, then it's game on. Go Cheetahs - I think most genuine rugby lovers are frikkin proud of you chaps.

  • WPBEFONK - 2011-05-08 16:14

    Complete perormance?? Who was the opponents? The answer will give you more insight as to why Naka view this as a complete performance.....

      Peter Britz - 2011-05-09 08:56

      Ha Ha, you feel a bit bitter after Saturday? In terms of he way the Cheetahs played it was a complete performance, in that the defence wasn't lacking, and the attacking play was still up there. If you compare the class and reputation of the players available to the Stormers, Sharks, and Bulls in comparison to that of the Cheetahs, then yes, the Cheetahs despatched the Lions with ruthless , and beautiful running rugby. Give credit where credit is due, and don't allow your dissapointment to cloud your perspective!! Pity Stormers fans are becoming as boorish as the bulls fans used to be, and they have achieved nothing in the past 10 years to justify their arrogance!! At least the bulls have 3 Super Rugby titles, and numerous CC titles, in the past 10 years. Heck even the Cheetahs have more CC titles than the Stormers/WP!!!

      WPBEFONK - 2011-05-09 10:04

      @Peter Britz- WP won the Currie Cup 32 times, more than any other SA team. So we are not selfish, we must alow others the opportunity to win cups...

  • jock van wyk - 2011-05-08 16:17

    It was good to see naka but at the moment the Soweto under 14 team could beat the lions

  • Stox - 2011-05-08 23:25

    Hope the Cheetahs carry on this form and play like they can with more consistency. From a Sharks man ;)

  • Niceb - 2011-05-09 07:11

    WPBEFONK - After the Sormers lost against the Reds they played the Lions and the headlines read, Sormers back on track. Then the Bulls after all there losses beated the Lions, Headline - Bulls back to winning ways. Then the Sharks after lossing to the Crusaders -then beating the lions - Sharks back to winning ways. I agree beating the Lions is no big deal and to say your back to winning ways is dumb, but the way the Cheetahs did it was better than any of the above mentioned teams.

      kosie - 2011-05-09 10:38

      so true

  • BardofAvon - 2011-05-09 07:34

    I didn't watch the game (I would have, but couldn't), but reading what Naka said the Lions scored 3 tries. How does that equate to 14 points?

      The Dutchman - 2011-05-10 12:04

      Another typing error from sport24 there, it was 54-19.

  • George van der Merwe - 2011-05-09 08:33

    I am an avid rugby supporter, but the game is becoming BORING!!! Bulls pick up and crash, pick up and crash, pick up and crash. Stormers pick up, pass and crash. Sharks scrums are reset ad infinitum. Thank goodness one South African team is finding its mojo to produce something exciting. Go Cheetahs. Unless Oom Snor and Rassie learn from you guys, the Boks won't last long in New Sheepland.

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