Free state old boys nail Cheetahs

Former Free State Cheetahs kingpin Willem de Waal emerged as Western Province’s hero after he goaled four penalties in his side’s 19-13 victory at Newlands on Friday evening.

The Free State Cheetahs coach Naka Drotske, said his side paid a heavy price for their mistakes but added it was something he expected.

“We (Free State) know better than any one else that you don’t give Willem de Waal any (goal scoring) chances in his own half,” said Drotske.

“It’s never easy at Newlands but that’s what we expected.” The 19-13 loss was Free State’s third defeat defeat in a row since the start of the Currie Cup season.

“It’s disappointing and therefore the next five games will be crucial in deciding if we are going to make the semi-finals.”

Free State matched Province in the second half when they scored a late try, but by that time De Waal’s boot had already made a telling impact on the match. “We decided we would counter-attack more in the second half and we came away with a try,” said Drotske.

“But the penalties had already done the damage in the first half.”

Province coach Allister Coetzee, said his side was under great pressure at the set-pieces but he was pleased the way he side held their own against a tough, physical Free State side.

“Free State are always good at the set-pieces and they were strong, at scrum time and in the line-outs,” said Coetzee.

“They know what they’re doing and they were quite disruptive, but I’m pleased with our progress and it was good to see players like Tonderai (Chavhanga) and Sireli (Naqelevuki) do so well.

“I must point out there was a huge contest at the breakdown because there were six very skilled loosies on duty, and it was inevitable were would be penalties.”

As it turned out, the difference was six points in the end after De Waal goaled four penalties in the match, as against the two by Free State flyhalf Jacques-Louis Potgieter.

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