Jaer sets up Cheetahs rout
SUPER RUGBY UNLOCKED REPORT: Malcolm Jaer showed how lethal he can be during the Cheetahs 53-31 win over the Pumas at the Free State Stadium on Saturday.
*As it happened: Cheetahs v Pumas
Jaer was doubtful with a knee injury following the Springbok showdown at Newlands last weekend.
However, the speedy wing was deemed fit and showed his class with a hattrick of tries.
It was certainly a great start for the discarded Cheetahs, who clearly sent a message to SA Rugby after their controversial axing from the Pro14 competition.
The Cheetahs outscored the Pumas eight tries to four.
The Cheetahs pack was powerful and backline were sublime as they built to a 41-3 lead at the break.
It took the Bloemfontein less than two minutes to open the score. Centre Bernard Janse van Rensburg and Clayton Blommetjies linked up perfectly before the ball found Malcolm Jaer, who went over in the corner
Pienaar added the extra two points for the 7-0 lead.
Pumas were rewarded with a penalty and Eddie Fouche made sure to add the three points.
However, Pienaar restored the seven-point lead with a successful penalty for the 10-3 lead.
With 20 minutes left on the clock, the Cheetahs already had a 22-3 lead. Jaer added another five-pointer to his name, while Junior Pokomela eased over the line for the third try of the match.
Pumas truly struggled with the Cheetahs pace. The backline was sublime, as a grubber from Frans Steyn found Blitzbok star Rosco Specman, for the fourth try of the match.
Minutes later, Specman had his double, gathering a highball and racing down the field for the try. Pienaar added the conversion for the 34-3 lead.
On the brink of the break, Specman was at it against as he sliced through the Pumas defenders before handing Pienaar the honours to dot down the ball for the five points. Pienaar converted his own try for the 41-3 lead at the break.
It was more of the same in the second half, the Cheetahs continues with their dominance, they work their way inside the Pumas 22 before a loop pass found replacement William Small-Smith for a try in the corner. Pienaar added the extras for the 48-3 lead.
The scrumhalf was in impressive form, however, a rare mistake from the veteran saw Ginter Smuts pounced on the loose ball and run in for the Pumas’first try. Fouche added the extras to trail, 10-48.
From the set-piece, the Cheetahs struck with great interplay between pack and backline before Jaer dived over for his third try of the match.
The Pumas were much better in the last quarter of the match. They had their second try of the match after a powerful maul got Daniel Maartens over the line. Fouche added the extras.
They kept pilling on the pressure which soon resulted in a numeral advantage as Cheetahs replacement Louis van der Westhuizen was handed a yellow card for a dangerous tackle.
With the extra man on the field, Pumas found their rhythm. They scored two consecutive tries courtesy of Le Roux Roets and Neil Maritz.
However, it was a little too late for the visitors and Cheetahs secured the win.
Man of the match: The Cheetahs were simply amazing and this award could have gone to anyone in a white jersey. Frans Steyn, Clayton Blommetjies, Malcolm Jaer, Junior Pokomela, Andisa Ntsila, and Carl Wegner deserve a mention. However, our nod goes to Cheetahs scrumhalf Ruan Pienaar, who dictated the match really well and was a vital link between backs and forwards.
Tries: Jaer 3, Specman 2, Pokomela, Small-Smith, Pienaar
Cons: Pienaar 5
Tries: Smuts, Maartens, Roets, Maritz
Cons: Fouche 4
Yellow card: Louis van der Westhuizen (Cheetahs, 67- reckless tackle)
Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Malcolm Jaer, 13 Benhard Janse van Rensburg, 12 Frans Steyn, 11 Rosko Specman, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Ruan Pienaar (captain), 8 Jasper Wiese, 7 Junior Pokomela, 6 Andisa Ntsila, 5 Walt Steenkamp, 4 Carl Wegner, 3 Luan de Bruin, 2 Reinach Venter, 1 Charles Marais.
Replacements: 16 Louis van der Westhuizen, 17 Boan Venter, 18 Erich de Jager, 19 JP du Preez, 20 Chris Massyn, 21 Aidon Davis, 22 Tian Meyer, 23 William Small-Smith.
Pumas: 15 Devon Williams, 14 Luther Obi, 13 Wayne van der Bank, 12 Ryan Nell (captain), 11 Neil Maritz, 10 Eddie Fouche, 9 Ginter Smuts, 8 Willie Engelbrecht, 7 Kwanda Dimaza, 6 Daniel Maartens, 5 Cameron Lindsay, 4 Le Roux Roets, 3 Ruan Kramer, 2 Marko Janse van Rensburg, 1 Morgan Naude.
Replacements: 16 Simon Westraadt, 17 Liam Hendricks, 18 Dewald Maritz, 19 Darrien Landsburg, 20 Jeandre Rudolph, 21 Dian Badenhorst, 22 Niel Marais, 23 Ruwellyn Isbell.
Referee: Jaco Peyper
Assistant referees: Griffin Colby and Ben Crouse
TMO: Stuart Berry