Late try sees Cheetahs beat Western Province

The Free State Cheetahs scored a controversial try with five minutes left to beat Western Province 28-22 in Bloemfontein on Saturday.


The hosts fought back from 13-0 down to hand Province their first loss of this season’s Currie Cup.


Cheetahs captain Andries Strauss went down with an ankle injury in the 75th minute, and the visitors stopped playing after medics ran onto the field.


The hosts, however, played to the whistle, and official Sandile Mayende allowed the try after Corne Uys went over unchallenged.


Province had taken the early advantage, with flyhalf Demetri Catrakilis securing three points from a penalty in the eighth minute.


Two minutes later, Province centre Johann Sadie broke through the Cheetahs’ defence and sprinted 30 metres down the left wing to dot down for the first try of the match.


Catrakilis converted and added another penalty to give the visitors a 13-0 lead midway through the first half.


Cheetahs flyhalf Sias Ebersohn responded with three penalties before the break, however, and closed the gap to 13-9.


The majority of the second half was a battle of the flyhalves, which Ebersohn dominated, adding a further 12 points.


Catrakilis responded with two penalties — he missed an attempt in the 73rd minute — before Uys went over for the hosts.


Catrakilis added another penalty before the final whistle, but the Cheetahs held on to bag their second win of the competition.


Strauss applauded Ebersohn for keeping the home side in striking distance after Province dominated the first quarter.


“Sias kicked exceptionally well today. He kept us in the game,” the skipper said.


“In a defensive game like this you need a good kicker.”


Final Score Cheetahs (9) 28 Western Province: (13) 22


Scorers


Free State Cheetahs
Try: Corne Uys.
Conversion: Sias Ebersohn
Penalties: Ebersohn (7)


Western Province
Try: Johann Sadie
Conversion: Demetri Catrakilis
Penalties: Catrakilis (5).

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