Cheetahs seek answers

2011-02-21 10:29

Jóhann Thormählen

Durban – It was not the main reason for the Cheetahs’ 9-24 defeat against the Sharks, but a video session on Monday will shed light on what went wrong in the scrums.

The visitors were heavily penalised in the scrums by referee Craig Joubert in the unattractive match.

Experts had predicted prior to kick-off that teams could struggle with the strict application of the scrum laws.

Cheetahs coach Naka Drotské did not want to say much about the scrums, but said that they would act if necessary.

“It’s difficult to say something about the scrums straight away. I would like to see a video of the match on Monday to be able to give a proper judgement. We can then decide whether the penalties were justified or not. It’s not easy to say something about it now, especially not after you lost and are still emotional,” said Drotské.

“We’ll have a look at it and if we feel that some of the decisions were over the top, we will send a report to André Watson (South African referees manager) or I will phone Craig myself and discuss it with him.”

Cheetahs prop Coenie Oosthuizen and hooker and captain Adriaan Strauss were despairing with all the penalties.

“The referees are very strict on early engagement. There is a fine line because you’d like to win the engagement to be able to scrum well.
When you are penalised for that at the first two scrums, you are often late after that and are dominated by your opponent,” said Drotské.

“The penalties definitely had an effect. We have to go and look whether we were early in the first few scrums. If we were, it’s our own fault. If not, you can find the fault with the referee.”

A joke by Sharks coach John Plumtree with a journalist in the press conference that there are technical aspects at the scrums that even a rugby writer does not understand, sums the issue up well.

Drotské said that neither of the sides had played well, but his team’s tactical kicking definitely led to their demise.

“There was not really anything wrong with the chase of our kicks. It was rather the execution that was not accurate. Most of the hanging kicks were simply too deep and it’s difficult to chase those. I believe the kicking plan we had was the right one.”

Drotské was proud of the defence and competing at the lineouts.

Lock Wilhelm Steenkamp underlined his value as a jumper, while Andries Strauss won the centre battle with Meyer Bosman.


  • Alwyn - 2011-02-21 10:34

    I have the answer,Get Rid of Drotske,Get a real coach ,you have the players to go far in the Super and Currie cup,Take this advise from a Bulls supporter

      PHIL - 2011-02-21 10:53


      Snoek - 2011-02-21 12:01

      Naka and Harald Verster

      Dewet - 2011-02-21 14:46

      ek stem saam die ouens lyk gevrek

  • Philip - 2011-02-21 10:48

    Alwyn, I'm a huge Cheetah, but I can't agree with you more. That is the real problem. One more thing I tend to think that Craig Joubert was a bit unreasonable at the scrums, but no excuses. We kicked away all our posession and it all boils down to a por game plan from a useless coach.

      Alwyn - 2011-02-21 11:21

      You have a valid point Craig Joubert has never played in the front row how can he decide who is at fault?,and that goes for all refs,Somebody should have been appointed to continue with Rassies Vision of the team,And Naka is definitely not the man

  • pcpcoetzee89 - 2011-02-21 10:55

    NAKA's time is up ... really ... the man is not grasping modern day rugby swiftly enough! Why not replacing both OOSTHUIZEN and OLIVIER immediately when he saw that they were struggling! Yet he continued with them on the field ... untill it was too late! Why continuing with an unexplainable, mind boggling kicking tactic if it was evident within the first 15 minutes that it wasn't working!!! No NAKA ... your time for excuses are running out ... very fast indeed!! Last year's pathetic show against WESTERN PROVINCE during the semi final (CC) already indicated that your time is up Boet!

  • Oukoos - 2011-02-21 11:17

    Everything keeps going wrong - Cheetahs

      gekko - 2011-02-21 12:11

      Oukoos...I wonder how long it took you to think of that line.You must be a Blue Bull with an IQ of 5.

      unbeatabulls - 2011-02-21 12:23

      gekko....and you must be a LOSER cheetah supporter....another lose this weekend coming bru!!!!

      Midnic - 2011-02-21 12:42

      @Gekko: Do I smell a sour grape?

      Philip - 2011-02-21 16:28

      Come, come guys. Please let's not resort to this type of mud slinging. I for once agree with the other supporters. I doesn't take a brain surgeon to see what's wrong here. Naka should go as well as all the other old men sitting around there knowing absolutely nothing of modern day bussiness principles.

  • goyougoodthing - 2011-02-21 11:35

    Scrums are the least of their problems. An incredibly poor performance, one that did not indicate anything as to the ability of the Sharks, other than their defence is great. Cheetahs did not run with the ball, and preferred a 2006 approach of kick and chase - has PDV been helping out I wonder? As for the Sharks, what a pleasure to get a decent win and not have to give anything away in terms of gameplan or much energy for the rest of the very long season.

      Totman - 2011-02-21 12:26

      I am not going to wish Naka away, neither going to try to run the ref down. However. His was very strict on Coenie. That is also fine, but why did he not blow The Beast up when he scrum inwards? The kicks confused the Sharks terribly. Not even to talk of the Cheetahs's tackles. If you could not see that you are looking with shark glasses. What is true is the Cheetahs kicks was to deep and when following it up they could not really be effective due to that distance. The Cheetahs can improve and sort these problems out, but do they have the deepness to compete a long season on that level? What is also clear to me is that the Sharks needs to gear up a bit. They have to uplift themselves to a higher standard, to be one of the top teams through the competition, that we need.. The general standard started high and they or improve to a much higher level or just try to be one of the SA teams that goes through, but have to do the play-out away from home. I know it is only in the begin and hope they will. Maybe your idea of energy saving, for the long season, is correct.

  • Johan - 2011-02-21 12:10

    Ball kicking out of hand by Cheetahs backs was poor. I think it is time to start with Sias Ebersohn at flyhalf. The opposition was never put under pressure from kick offs, lack of commitment from the Cheeatah speedsters.

  • The Dutchman - 2011-02-21 12:18

    If Naka maybe read the memo sent out by the SARU he might have noticed that Ref's were given strict instructions to penalise at the scrum for early engagement, this to prevent injury and to make scrumming more fair. We played k@k and when we got the ball, we decided tackling is much more fun, so we kicked the ball where no Cheetah player could get to it, and gave the Sharks the ball. Poor game plan, poor execution and lack of commitment was what cost the Cheetahs, not the Ref doing his job. Naka should go couch the Kings and we need to get Rassie back.

      Philip - 2011-02-21 16:20

      I agree, poor coaching is what have terminated good talent. The refereeing wasn't great, but that didn't cause the Cheetahs to lose. What we need is a proper S15 coach not some wannybee ex hooker.

  • cpdennis1 - 2011-02-21 12:21

    Please explain what happened in the scrums? Was at the game and while I support the Sharks and was happy with the penalties they were awarded, it was a scrappy horrible game!

  • thumper - 2011-02-21 12:29

    The game was disappointing and both teams weren't great and I am not a supporter of either team! However, I believe Craig Joubert is the cause! He is one of the worst refs in South Africa and every game he officiates ends with controversy regarding law applications. Let him go ref all his matches in the other 2 conferences and let the NZ and Oz supporters and commentators climb ino his poor performances.

  • jakes001 - 2011-02-21 13:03

    Game Plane was bad.

  • AZB - 2011-02-21 13:06

    It was not a very good performance by the Cheetahs on Saturday. The game plan to kick the ball failed, its so yesterday tactics. Naka has never impressed me as a coach and continue to dissappoint. And then Greg Joubert.... what a sorry preformance. Best explenation I got was from a Shark supporter "he could not allow a young front row to outperform the Bok frontrow in the worldcup year" I must add that most of the Cheetah players showed guts and commitment. We just need the coach to catch a wake up.

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