Reds put Cheetahs to the sword

30 Apr 2016
Reds put Cheetahs to the sword

The Reds secured only their second victory of the season when they beat the Cheetahs 30-17 in Brisbane on Saturday.

The home side, whose previous win came against the Highlanders in Round Seven, were full value for their win and outscored their hosts three tries to two with Nick Frisby leading the way with a brace.

The result means the Reds are still fourth on the Australian Conference table but they now have a six-point lead over the bottom-placed Western Force.

The Cheetahs are still third in the Africa Conference One standings but are trailing the Stormers and Bulls, who are in joint top spot, by a massive 16 points.

The opening half was a dour affair, as both sides committed a plethora of unforced errors despite giving the ball plenty of air as they tried to gain the ascendancy. 

The Cheetahs took the lead via a Fred Zeilinga penalty in the third minute before Jake McIntyre drew the hosts level with a three-pointer of his own, from the kicking tee, two minutes later.

There was little interesting to report for the next 25 minutes as the two sides wasted several chances on attack.

The Reds suffered a setback, on the half-hour mark, when Anthony Fainga'a was sent to the sin bin for a shoulder charge on Nico Lee and the visitors made their numerical advantage count when Uzaier Cassiem burrowed his way over the tryline, from a maul, shortly afterwards.

The Reds didn't panic though and on the stroke of half-time Curtis Browning showed great determination and leg-drive before barging over for his side's opening try from the back of a scrum on the Cheetahs' five-metre line.

McIntyre converted which meant the sides were deadlocked at 10-10 at half-time but the Reds didn't waste time after the restart to take the lead for the first time.

And they did it in spectacular fashion with Samu Kerevi, Karmichael Hunt and Eto Nabuli all playing prominent roles in the bulid-up which allowed Frisby to score for his first try.

McIntyre added the extras, and made it 20-10 in the 52nd minute when he landed a penalty after the Cheetahs were penalised for a ruck infringement.

The Reds continued to dominate and 10 minutes Kerevi carved open the Cheetahs defence before the ball was shifted to Frisby, who got over for his second try.

In the 68th minute, the hosts were reduced to 14 men for the second time - Liam Gill receiving his marching orders for a cynical foul in defence - and the Cheetahs struck back with a Raymond Rhule try in the left-hand corner shortly afterwards.

The visitors continued to attack as they tried to get something from this match but McIntyre soon extended the Reds' lead with a penalty in the 75th minute.

That didn't deter the Cheetahs and they launched several attacks inside the final five minutes. They thought they had narrowed the gap again, when Clayton Blommetjies dived onto the ball behind the Reds' tryline after Lee delivered a perfectly weighted grubber kick, but the effort was disallowed when Willie Britz was sent to the sin bin for foul play, in the build-up.

That allowed the Reds to cling to their lead until the final whistle which came shortly after Britz's ignominious exit.

The scorers:

For Reds:
Tries: Frisby 2, Browning

Cons: McIntyre 3

Pens: McIntyre 3

Yellow cards: A Fainga'a, Gill

For Cheetahs:
Tries: Cassiem, Rhule

Cons: Zeilinga 2

Pen: Zeilinga

Yellow card: Britz

Reds: 15 Karmichael Hunt, 14 Junior Laloifi, 13 Samu Kerevi, 12 Anthony Fainga'a, 11 Eto Nabuli, 10 Jake McIntyre, 9 Nick Frisby, 8 Curtis Browning, 7 Liam Gill, 6 Hendrik Tui, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Ben Matwijow, 3 Greg Holmes, 2 Andrew Ready, 1 James Slipper (c)

Replacements: 16 Saia Fainga'a, 17 Sef Fa'agase, 18 Sam Talakai, 19 Cadeyrn Neville, 20 Michael Gunn, 21 James Tuttle, 22 Duncan Paia'aua, 23 Ayumu Goromaru

Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Nico Lee, 12 Michael van der Spuy, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Shaun Venter, 8 Henco Venter, 7 Uzair Cassiem, 6 Paul Schoeman, 5 Lood de Jager, 4 Carl Wegner, 3 Maks van Dyk, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld, 1 Charles Marais

Replacements: 16 Jacques du Toit, 17 Luan de Bruin, 18 Johan Coetzee, 19 Francois Uys, 20 Oupa Mohoje, 21 Willie Britz, 22 Tian Meyer, 23 Niel Marais

Referee: Ben O'Keeffe

Assistant Referees: Will Houston, Nic Berry

TMO: George Ayoub