LIVE

    Solid return for Juan Smith

    2013-02-03 15:23
    Post a comment

    Bloemfontein - The Cheetahs have gained some valuable momentum with their 27-26 victory in their warm up match against the Stormers on Saturday, while the return of some injured players like Springbok flanker Juan Smith and Frans Viljoen has left captain and Springbok hooker Adriaan Strauss smiling.

    Smith made his return in the Free State stadium at the very ground he ruptured his Achilles tendon against the Bulls two years ago and although he only played for half an hour, he carried the ball up nicely and even captained the side for a while when Strauss was replaced. That, and the fact that the Cheetahs snatched the victory from the Stormers after the hooter sounded, left Strauss a happy man.

    "The players showed some real character. We were under pressure after losing to the Lions last weekend, but we came back and beat the Stormers. This means a lot for our preparation going into our first official game against the Sharks. It was good to see the likes of Juan and Frans showing they're still hungry to play," Strauss said.

    Although the warm up game counts for nothing, the Cheetahs got the chance to identify some problem areas before hosting the Sharks on 23 February.

    "We didn't have a good first half. We just couldn't stop the rolling maul when the Stormers utilised it. And we played too much in our own half. We made mistakes and they caught us there. Luckily it's a warm up game and we now get the opportunity to rectify these mistakes. We did much better in the second stanza and for that I am very proud of the boys," Strauss added.

    The Stormers will also take much from the game, with young flyhalf Kurt Coleman and new signings like full back Jaco Taute (formerly Lions) producing stellar performances.

    The Capetonians next take on Boland in their second warm up and captain and eighthman Duanne Vermeulen admitted a few problem areas needed to be rectified.

    "This was our first game of the season and a tough one against the Cheetahs. We were in control for a good period of time, but we made some silly mistakes and the Cheetahs capitalised on them. They played very well and it is clear that we still have much work to do before we take on the Bulls," Vermeulen said.

    The new law at the scrums also came into play, with both the Stormers and Cheetahs struggling to compose themselves before the hit.

    "There are a lot of new things in the scrums, but we as players must adapt to those situations. The referees do their bit and so must we," Vermeulen added.

    Read News24’s Comments Policy

    24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

    Comment on this story
    8 comments
    Add your comment
    Comment 0 characters remaining
    Live Video Streaming
    Sport Talk

    Fixtures

    25 April 2014
    • Blues v Waratahs, Auckland 07:35
    • Brumbies v Chiefs, Canberra 09:40
    • Sharks v Highlanders, Durban 19:10
    26 April 2014
    • Hurricanes v Reds, Wellington 09:35
    • Western Force v Bulls, Perth 11:40
    • Cheetahs v Stormers, Bloemfontein 17:05
    02 May 2014
    • Blues v Reds, Auckland 09:35
    • Melbourne Rebels v Sharks, Melbourne 11:40

    Results

    19 April 2014
    18 April 2014
    12 April 2014
    11 April 2014
    05 April 2014
    04 April 2014
    29 March 2014
    28 March 2014
    22 March 2014
    21 March 2014
    15 March 2014
    14 March 2014
    08 March 2014
    07 March 2014
    01 March 2014
    28 February 2014
    23 February 2014
    22 February 2014
    21 February 2014
    15 February 2014

    Logs

    Rank Team P W Pts

    EXPERT OPINION

    “As we head into Round 11 of Super Rugby, an alarming stat is that South African teams crop up the bottom of the tries scored category.”

    Opinion Poll

    While the Sharks look like sure winners of the SA Super Rugby Conference, the "battle" for the wooden spoon could well develop into a four-team race. Who eventually props up the table?

    Monday Quiz Madness!

    TAKE THE QUIZ
    There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.