Sharks surge past Cheetahs

2012-05-19 19:14

Bloemfontein -French fly half Frederik Michalak produced an impressive tally of 19 points to lead the Sharks to a 34-20 victory over the Cheetahs in their Super Rugby encounter in Bloemfontein on Saturday.

Michalak, who came into the starting line up at short notice after Patrick Lambie withdrew late on Friday with flu, scored a try, kicked three conversions and a penalty to help his side gain much-needed momentum.

With the victory, the Sharks are still in the running to play in the knock out stages, achieving full points with a stylish display of running rugby.

The Cheetahs had some good periods of attacking play, but never looked like the same side which almost caused an upset against the Stormers the previous week.

Sharks winger JP Pietersen ran the first try for the Sharks, in the third minute.

Springbok hooker Bismarck du Plessis showed his class, bumping off one Cheetahs' defender after another before Pietersen finished off in the corner.

Michalak converted to help put his team on the front foot.

The Cheetahs replied with some exiting running rugby of their own, with Springbok hooker and captain Adriaan Strauss heavily involved in the build-up to a converted penalty by flyhalf Riaan Smit.

Smit kicked another penalty in the 29th minute to bring his team within one point of the visitors.

From the resulting kick off, Cheetahs centre Robert Ebersohn cut through the visitors' defence and hooker Strauss powered over for the home side's first five pointer after an impressive 16 phases of attacking play.

That enticed the Cheetahs to start running from deep in their own half, but it all went terribly wrong when Sharks full back Riaan Viljoen answered back with an up-and-under from his counterpart Hennie Daniller's clearing kick.

Michalak followed up and grabbed a wayward bounce to score and convert for the lead.

Smit kicked another penalty shortly before half time to level the scores on 14 points each, but it was the Sharks flair that had the last say before the break.

The visitors decided to take the quick tap for a penalty rather than kick at goal and they stretched the Cheetahs' defence to allow winger Lwazi Mvovo to add another try to the two he had scored last week against the Western Force.

The Cheetahs' defence was visibly improved in the second stanza but an infringement at the break down allowed Michalak his first penalty.

Sharks hooker Du Plessis and prop Tendai "Beast" Mtawarira pitched with some good runs, but ultimately it was the Frenchman's boot that left the home side struggling.

Du Plessis received a yellow card in the 53rd minute for using only his shoulder in a tackle and replacement flyhalf Sias Ebersohn slotted home the penalty.

Without Du Plessis to bolster the scrums, the Sharks were penalised for collapsing and Ebersohn kicked another screamer through the uprights.

Michalak added another penalty to his tally in the 67th minute and, five minutes later, Mvovo scored their converted bonus point try.

Points scorers: Sharks: Tries: JP Pietersen, Frederik Michalak, Lwazi Mvovo, Meyer Bosman. Conversions: Frederik Michalak (4). Penalties: Frederik Michalak (2).

Cheetahs Tries: Adriaan Strauss. Penalties: Riaan Smit (3), Sias Ebersohn (2).


Try: Adriaan Strauss
Pens: Smit 3, S Ebersohn 2

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

Yellow card: Bismarck du Plessis (Sharks, 53 - foul play, illegal shoulder charge)


– 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 Brussouw, 5 George Earle, 4 Izak van der Westhuizen, 3 WP Nel, 2 Adriaan Strauss (c), 1 Coenie Oosthuizen.
Subs: 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 Frederic Michalak, 9 Charl McLeod, 8 Keegan Daniel (c), 7 Marcell Coetzee, 6 Jacques Botes, 5 Anton Bresler, 4 Steven Sykes, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Subs: 16 Craig Burden, 17 Wiehahn Herbst, 18 Willem Alberts, 19 Jean Deysel, 20 Ryan Kankowski, 21 Meyer Bosman, 22 Odwa Ndungane.


  • Bpong - 2012-05-19 19:17

    Awesome win Sharkies, can never write the Cheetahs off though. Looking good for a playoff spot!!! Stormers should be worried about visiting the Shark tank next week!!!

      Anele - 2012-05-19 21:09

      i cant wait for the Stormers next weekend, gonna get my tickets on Monday!! We are black, we are white, we are frikkin dynamite!!!!

  • Anele - 2012-05-19 19:25

    what a great game to watch!!!

  • Craig - 2012-05-19 20:01

    Great game sharks! Are we peaking at the right time? Still a long way to go though, keep it up boitjies. Nice entertaining game that.

  • David - 2012-05-19 20:27

    Great game Sharks!! Where was this side earlier in the comp?? Show em what you're made of, Go Sharks!!!

  • mthunzi.phakathi - 2012-05-19 20:36

    A certain team decided enough is enough and started winning games again. Guys must nt forgt only the hurricanes game has been a proper flop dis season, the rest of the lost games hv yielded bonus pts. We hv nt been dominated, we hv let games slip

  • Keith - 2012-05-19 20:36

    Another loss for Naka's almost white Cheetah team. I know I sound racist, and I tender my apologies to all my friends over the race line. I find mind boggling that Naka can find only one quality black player to start in his side.I'm asking again where is Raubenheimer and why is Ashley on the reserve bench.I like my Cheetah rugby but I'm disappointed with team selection.

      Craig - 2012-05-19 20:59

      I don't think it's necessary to take race into account here. Why can't we just ignore colour. Pick the team that's best. If they're all black or if they're all white, it doesn't matter. As long as they deserve their spot in the team. Just leave politics out of it.

      mthunzi.phakathi - 2012-05-19 21:33

      Its easy to say race is not a factor mate,however if u consider a clear deserving monster like AJ is on the bench at srugby level, what cn we say? Now consider how many deserving black players get overlooked at age group, school, club and voda cup level

      marnusmnorval - 2012-05-19 21:33

      Ashley is impact player idiot

      mthunzi.phakathi - 2012-05-19 21:33

      Its easy to say race is not a factor mate,however if u consider a clear deserving monster like AJ is on the bench at srugby level, what cn we say? Now consider how many deserving black players get overlooked at age group, school, club and voda cup level

      Hans - 2012-05-19 21:52

      Cosato march next week Keith, please don't miss it.

      mthunzi.phakathi - 2012-05-20 07:42

      Impact player my foot, it is clear that u either played rugby many moons ago, or u are turning a blind eye. Either way it is the very same pretence of a perfect world that allowed apartheid to flourish. I love rugby but i hate it whn ppl act ignorant

      mthunzi.phakathi - 2012-05-20 07:42

      Impact player my foot, it is clear that u either played rugby many moons ago, or u are turning a blind eye. Either way it is the very same pretence of a perfect world that allowed apartheid to flourish. I love rugby but i hate it whn ppl act ignorant

      Chumscrubber1 - 2012-05-20 07:50

      Mthunzi, in the same breath you can ask how many deserving white players are left out in order to make up the correct quotas. Merit has to be the only factor, and I do hope that no black players are left out just because of race, this would be a very sad situation, it probably does occur in some circumstances.

      Hans - 2012-05-20 22:45

      mthunzi, this is a revolutionary blog, if come here with your tendencies you jump. comedy aside, the blacks on the street were better off and better looked after in the apartheid years than now, in whatever you call this south africa. don't speak of things you don't understand. "bastard!"

  • Priester - 2012-05-19 21:23

    Good one Sharks. Congratulations with your win. I am quite confident that you can beat the papsakke next week. Blou Bul Groete!

  • GregandShaz - 2012-05-19 21:42

    Be scared scared. Next week you're going to get a klap :D

  • Nathan - 2012-05-19 22:27

    Another step in the right direction:) hope we can keep it up...bizzys bounces were epic this evening, lost count of them all.

  • riaan.v.merwe - 2012-05-19 22:52

    Sonder ons ster speler en playmaker Pat Het ons julle gewen, wag vir jul ini tank Stormers!!!!

  • BlouTokolos - 2012-05-20 04:06

    Great stuff Sharks!!! Well done!

  • Denése - 2012-05-20 04:40

    Well done, SHARKS! Amazing game to watch. Freddie certainly added value. My heart need not have "bled" when I found out that LAMBIE was not fit to play. Cheetahs are my 2nd favourite team, so I'm pleased Sias was successful with a couple of kicks.

  • frans.visserdsb - 2012-05-20 05:17

    I said at the beginnig of the season that i thought the Sharks would be the best SA side. I thought the Bulls had lost too many of their real stars, and the Stormers (my team) is short on depth. The Stormers have problems with injuries, but are still on top of the log, and the Bulls have done very well with their steam roller kick and chase game. i still think the Sharks have the best balanced side, with a good front row, quality loosies and a decent backline. took them a while to get going, but they are now looking good for the playoffs. I am looking forward to next weekend's game.

      Luke - 2012-05-20 17:01

      too true.

  • sarel.brits - 2012-05-20 06:51

    Snaakse score line die, Sharks 15 France 19 VS Cheetas 20 Ja neeee Natal julle het die Mielie Boere op ge neuk hoor.

  • Chumscrubber1 - 2012-05-20 07:44

    I'm starting to believe in my team again. This was a great hard fought but convincing victory. I think the Stormers and Bulls must have developed some serious respect for this side now. Big test will be against the latter, should be good, tense encounters.

  • Kenengek - 2012-05-20 07:50

    Sharks game started improving with the return of the Beast to the side. Scrummage improved considerably since then, providing decent ball to attack with.

  • Mark - 2012-05-20 07:54

    Freddies best game since joining the sharks. Big on defence and put the backs on the front foot with his passing

  • Christopher - 2012-05-20 09:32

    Well done Sharks, couple more to go.

  • Cavin - 2012-05-20 15:33

    And the SHARK starts to bare it's teeth on it's way to that final bite. Great game. All those critics writing you off in the beginning of the season are starting to swallow with difficulty. Keep it up. SHARK forever!!!!

  • Keith - 2012-05-21 10:35

    Marnusmnorval to be called an idiot by you makes two idiots.Johnson is one of your best loose forwards by far in the Cheetahs side and is not an impact player.You start with your best fifteen irrespective of their race in anyway.If merit is your criteria you start with Brussouw and Johnson as your two looseforwards because they are the best in their positions in the franchise currently.Look at all the games except the ions game where Johnson was off radar and you'll see what I mean.Stop putting labels on certain players for your own narrow agendas.Greetings my fellow idiot.

  • Hans - 2012-05-21 15:45

    1st game of the season that JP Petersen deserved to be in the squad. I suppose he has to perform, now that the other pre-madona wing is out. One Mvovo = 3 Petersens. Sharks for once this season seems hungry. Bismarck had a cracker (Adriaan Strauss who?), Marcel was quiet for a change (luckily for the Cheetahs), and i feel Alberts had a good run. I cannot see the Sharks losing this weekend, also with Pat "Jnr Rolls Royce" Lambie back in the squad. Also it seems the boys are finally getting the ball to the wings and attacking that advantage line (although it needs improvement). Mr Mac, keep working your magic behind the scenes, you are great, perhaps the unsung hero of SA Rugby. Plumtree, finally your team seems worthy of wearing the Black and White.

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