Home Pre-Season Mach Report – Pumas surprise Cheetahs in Nelspruit in scrappy affair

Mach Report – Pumas surprise Cheetahs in Nelspruit in scrappy affair

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Not pretty but the Pumas did what was needed to take their first win against the Cheetahs on Friday with 22-15 in Nelspruit.

It was an error ridden match as both sides struggled to hold on to the ball and never really got going.

It was Ruan Pienaar that kicked the first points of the match to give the Cheetahs the early lead.

The Pumas had a good period in the Cheetahs twenty two with a few attacking line outs and scrums putting huge pressure on the visitors line, but the Cheetahs defence was up for everything they threw at them.

The Cheetahs really struggle in the first twenty minutes to build momentum on attack getting bossed at the rucks by the home side.

The Pumas finally got the scoreboard rolling with two kick penalty from Fouche that gave them the lead for the fist time. That was immediately counter with a massive drop goal from Rhyno Smith.

The Cheetahs then had Chris Smit send to the bin while the Pumas was again on attack in their red zone, but handling errors was the Pumas biggest enemy at that stage.

The Pumas got the lead back with another penalty from Fouche making it 9-6 just before the break.

Another penalty in the scrum gave Fouche another shot at goal as he extended the lead to 12-6 which was also the score as the teams went into the break.

The Cheetahs showed a bit more on attack at the start of the second half and a penalty gave Pienaar the opportunity to reduce the Pumas lead to only 3.

The Pumas loss Morgan Naudé to a yellow card early in the second half for dangerous play. With the Cheetahs in the Pumas red zone they forced another penalty which Pienaar kicked over to level the score to 12-all after 53 minutes.

The game struggled to get going with just too much penalties been given away by both teams.

The Cheetahs with the better of the field possession got another penalty which Frans Steyn kicked over to give the men from Bloemfontein the lead by 3.

The first try came from the home side when they manage to keep the ball in hand and get Fouché over. Converting his own try he took the Pumas back into the lead by 19-15.

The Pumas got another penalty on the scrum which Fouche happily knocked over to stretch the home side lead to 22-15.

The Cheetahs tried all they can in the final minutes to force a draw but as it was throughout the match handling let them down to give the Pumas their first win and the Cheetahs first loss.

Scorers:

Pumas(22):  Tries – Eddie Fouché Conversions – Eddie Fouché Penalties – Eddie Fouché(5)

Cheetahs(15): Penalties – Ruan Pienaar(3), Frans Steyn Drop Goal – Rhyno Smith

 

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