Sun 30 May 2021 | 01:03

'They outplayed us': Pienaar opens up on embarrassing defeat

'They outplayed us': Pienaar opens up on embarrassing defeat
Sun 30 May 2021 | 01:03
'They outplayed us': Pienaar opens up on embarrassing defeat
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REACTION: Cheetahs captain Ruan Pienaar admitted there were very few positives to take out of his team’s shock 35-43 loss to the Invitational XV in Bloemfontein on Saturday.

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The Invitational XV only had two training sessions together before Saturday’s game, but they rattled their opponents throughout the 80 minutes on their way to a surprising victory.

The Cheetahs were also reduced to 14 men in the second half when Conraad van Vuuren was red-carded for a dangerous no-arms cleanout

While the Cheetahs headed into the game having not played a game in two months, the result is still an embarrassing one for them.

“They looked like a team that has been together for a year and they showed a lot more character and a lot more spirit than we did,” said Pienaar.

“I think they outplayed us and outmuscled us.

“It’s disappointing. I think we were also a bit rusty and we have not played in a long time, but that is not an excuse.

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“We played a team that has only been together for three days, so that makes it really disappointing.

“Hats off to them, they played well. They showed urgency, they put us under pressure at line-out time.

“At the breakdown, I thought they slowed down our ball well, so it is frustrating.

“There are not many positives to take from the game.”

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Cheetahs head coach Hawies Fourie said winning was still important despite it being only a pre-season game.

“For us both [result and the process] were important,” said Fourie.

“We wanted to win the game obviously and we wanted to work on a lot of stuff that we have been doing the past two months.

“We made a lot of errors, forced a lot of passes and conceded a lot of turnovers. We were not pleased with the performance.”

@rugby365com

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