Griquas seemed to have learned from their 30-16 rugby lesson dished out by the Sharks a week ago in their first match of the Currie Cup.
THE TAFEL Lager Griquas threw off the mantle of perennial underdogs of South African rugby with an impressive 31-10 trouncing of the Cheetahs at Tafel Lager Park on Saturday.
It was a rather disappointing performance by the Free State side in their first game of the Carling Currie Cup competition, while Griquas seemed to have learned from their 30-16 rugby lesson dished out by the Sharks a week ago in their first match of the competition.
The Cheetahs were blown off the park and were lacking in both attack and defence as they allowed the hosts to run in three unanswered tries in the final 25 minutes to take the result beyond doubt.
There was not much action in the first half and the Griquas went into the break 7-3 ahead. The hosts looked good in the first half and put pressure on the Free Staters and came close to crossing the line on a number of occasions.
However, when Griquas No.8 Hanru Sirgel was yellow-carded in the 26th minute the Cheetahs took advantage and managed to put the first points on the board with veteran Bok scrumhalf Ruan Pienaar putting over a penalty.
Griquas did not back down and always looked dangerous on attack, and two minutes before half-time, they crossed over for the try they’d been threatening to score all along. Eduan Keyter found some space and drew in the last defender before offloading to fullback Masixole Banda for the try. George Whitehead’s conversion was good, and Griquas headed into the break with their tails up.
The Cheetahs came from the break looking a little bit more organised and efficient and it paid off when, after putting together some patient phase-play inside Griquas territory, No.8 Gideon van Wyk picked the ball up at the back of the ruck darted for the tryline. Pienaar added the extras to hand the Cheetahs the lead for the first time in the match.
But Griquas were not to be bullied. The hosts hit back five minutes later after centre JC Nel took full advantage of some scrappy Cheetahs defending to dot down after some individual brilliance. Whitehead added the two points to put the Kimberley boys four points clear.
This seemed to be a catalyst for Griquas because from that point, they took total control of the game and added two further tries with Mzwanele Zito and Keyter rubbing salt into the Cheetahs wounds and consigning the visitors to a humiliating defeat.