Cheetahs have much ironing to do
Cheetahs captain Robert Ebersohn admitted there is a lot of work to be done before the start of their Super Rugby campaign following their demoralising defeat to the Lions in Johannesburg on Saturday.
The Cheetahs had a solid first half which saw them lead 17-7 at the break, but holes in their defence opened up in the second stanza and led to the Lions scoring 26 unanswered points to condemn the Bloemfontein side to defeat in their first pre-season hit-out.
The 33-17 loss exposed several weaknesses in the Cheetahs’ game, most alarmingly their known defensive deficiency, which seems to have carried over to 2013.
Ebersohn, who stood in for rested regular skipper Adriaan Strauss, said they let themselves down tactically as well as defensively.
“Definitely it wasn’t the start we were looking for. We were very scrappy at the breakdown and there’s a lot of work still ahead,” Ebersohn said post match.
“The one aspect we definitely need to work on is our kicking game in our own half. We gut stuck there and just couldn’t get out of our own half.”
Ebersohn conceded that they will need to iron out their tackling ailments in their remaining pre-season matches against the Stormers and the Bulls ahead of their Super Rugby opener against the Sharks.
“We have to work on our defence. On attack we’ve always been strong and dangerous when we have the ball in hand but we have to turn our defence around,” he said.
“There’s not a lot of time left [before the start of Super Rugby] and we’re making it difficult for ourselves. We have to get it right before the competition starts.”