Pienaar penalty goal sees Cheetahs draw with Griquas
MATCH REPORT: Two penalty goals in the last minutes of the Currie Cup game between the Cheetahs and Griquas have led to a 29-29 draw in Bloemfontein on Saturday.
After the score was equal at 26-26 in the 60th minute of the game, Griquas fullback George Whitehead sent a successful penalty through the posts for the visitors to take the lead 29-26 going into the last stretch of the game.
The Griqua supporters might have thought this one was in the bag, but a penalty in the 79th minute to the Free State saw Ruan Pienaar send the ball straight and clean through the uprights to clinch a draw.
The boot of Griquas flyhalf Lubabalo Dobela not only kept his side in the game, but for a long time during the first half they were leading 23-12 thanks to three successful penalty goals and two conversion kicks.
The youngster has racked up 76 points in the Currie Cup this season which makes him one of the top points scorers in the competition.
Griquas struggled to cross the Cheetahs’ tryline, and could only do so twice, in the 14th minute when Janco Uys barged over and then in the 28th minute at the hands of Dylan Sjoblom.
They might nog have been able to score enough tries, and could only muster two penalty kicks in the second half, but the tenacity of the Griquas defence almost won them the game.
The Cheetahs scored their first try within the first ten minutes, followed by another two in the first half, by Cohen Jasper after a great grubber by Tapiwa Mafura and the second by Marnus van der Merwe.
The homeside scored their bonus-point try in the 51st minute when Gideon van der Merwe barged up after the ball went to the back of the lineout.
The Cheetahs remain in second position on the log while Griquas remain in sixth with 30 points.
For the Cheetahs:
Tries: Qoba, Jasper, Marnus van der Merwe, Gideon van der Merwe
Cons: Pienaar 3
Tries: Uys, Sjoblom
Cons: Dobela 2
Pens: Dobela 4, Whitehead
Cheetahs: 15 Tapiwa Mafura, 14 Daniel Kasende, 13 David Brits, 12 Evardi Boshoff, 11 Cohen Jasper, 10 Ruan Pienaar, 9 Rewan Kruger, 8 Friedle Olivier, 7 Sibabalo Qoma, 6 Gideon van der Merwe, 5 Victor Sekekete (captain), 4 Rynier Bernardo, 3 Laurence Victor, 2 Marnus van der Merwe, 1 Schalk Ferrreira.
Replacements: 16 Louis van der Westhuizen, 17 Alulutho Tshakweni, 18 Hencus van Wyk, 19 Andisa Ntsila, 20 George Cronje, 21 Daniel Maartens, 22 Siyabonga Masuku, 23 Robert Ebersohn
Griquas: 15 George Whitehead, 14 Rosko Specman, 13 Jay-Cee Nel, 12 Tertius Kruger, 11 Luther Obi, 10 Lubabalo Dobela, 9 Johan Mulder, 8 Carl Els, 7 Hanru Sirgel, 6 Thabo Ndimande, 5 Derik Pretorius 4 Dylan Sjoblom, 3 Janu Botha, 2 Janco Uys, 1 Kudzwai Dube.
Replacement: 16 Sean Swart, 17 Cebo Dlamini, 18 Justin Forwood, 19 Johan Retief, 20 Stephan Smit, 21 Reagan Oranje, 22 Eduard Fouche, 23 Sango Xamlashe
Referee: Cwengile Jadezweni
Assistant Referees: Local
TMO: Quinton Immelman