Loading...
Loading Live Scoring...
*All times CAT (GMT+2)

Rugby | Absa Currie Cup

Ebersohn steals victory at Loftus



Young star Sias Ebersohn showed tremendous nerve and grit to send through a sideline conversion after the final whistle to give the Vodacom Free State Cheetahs a nail-biting 25-23 victory over the Vodacom Blue Bulls at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday night.

Ebersohn’s kick curled in to send the Cheetahs players into wild celebrations as they clawed their way back from behind to steal the game from under the Blue Bull noses after Skipper Badenhorst had gone in at the corner at the death.

It was a remarkable victory for Naka Drotske’s men, especially after they were chasing the game throughout and had the majority of possession but were unable to break a tough Bulls defence for most of the match.

The Bulls will be upset with a number of interpretations at the breakdown with referee Pro Legoete, but in a game where adapting to the referee is paramount, they paid for their indiscipline.

The Cheetahs adapted better to the conditions, took their chances when presented to them and managed to upset the young Bulls side into mistakes at crucial times.

But despite having the wealth of possession the closest they came to the tryline before the final move was when prop Coenie Oosthuizen, who had a storming game, was stopped short twice in TMO decisions that went against his team.

Springbok flanker Juan Smith had a massive day, and was the pillar of his side’s victory, while Oosthuizen, Adriaan Strauss, Hennie Daniller and Robert Ebersohn all had massive games, while Tertius Carse’s cameo in the second half ensured his side remained on the front foot.

The Bulls will be happy with the performances of Stefan Watermeyer, Derick Kuün, Wilhelm Steenkamp and prop Dean Greyling, while youngsters CJ Stander and Gerrit-Jan van Velze both showed some great form in their time on the field.

The Bulls were all fire and brimstone in their start, as they racked up an early 10-0 lead. Jacques-Louis Potgieter’s boot opened the scoring before a 30 metre lineout drive gave enough momentum for Kuün to go over for the try.

Potgieter and Louis Strydom swopped two penalties apiece before the latter slotted his third penalty to leave the teams 16-9 at the break.

The penalties kept racking up against the Bulls, who failed to adapt to Legoete’s rulings on rolling away from the ruck, and it wasn’t long before Strydom kept the scoreboard ticking and let his side creep to 16-15 behind the Bulls.

Then a moment of fortune for the Bulls, as they surged up to the Cheetah line and when the ball went wide, Stefan Watermeyer tried a switch to his midfield partner Stephan Dippenaar which bounced into his hands and back to Watermeyer to run in and score. The Cheetahs protests for a knock forward were ignored by Legoete, who awarded the try.

The Bulls looked set to close it out minutes later when they were again penalised on the Cheetah tryline, sending the Cheetahs surging back upfield. A break by Carse led to another penalty, which Sias Ebersohn, who had just appeared on the field, slotted to bring his side within five points.

The Cheetahs kept the ball away from the Bulls and just kept on coming, forcing more penalties and soaking up the field position as they continued to dominate. Eventually something had to give, and Badenhorst had enough space to run in for the try.

When Ebersohn showed the perfect touch with the boot from the touchline, it gave the Cheetahs a memorable victory after coming so close so often at Loftus Versfeld.

Scorers

Vodacom Blue Bulls – tries: Derick Kuün, Stefan Watermeyer. Conversions: Jacques-Louis Potgieter (2). Penalties: Potgieter (3)

Vodacom Free State Cheetahs – try: Skipper Badenhorst. Conversion: Sias Ebersohn. Penalties: Louis Strydom (5), Sias Ebersohn.

Shop

The Poisoned Chalice
The Springboks have had several post-isolation coaches, and if they agree on nothing else, they will concur that everyone in the job suffers enormous pressure
R157.00
Coach - Marco Botha
At 34, Heyneke Meyer was fired as head coach of a Super Rugby team for the second time
R114.00
South Africa XV Ball
South Africa XV Ball Now: R119 Was: R200 Format:Sport EquipmentProduct type:SportDelivery:Dispatched within 24 hours (1 working day) This fan ball...
R119.00


Comments

More expert analysis and opinion from Sport24
The opinions expressed by Sport24 experts and bloggers are theirs alone, and do not necessarily represent those of SuperSport

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Other Live Streaming

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Sports Talk



Super Wrap
SuperWrap: Week 3, 2015
It was a pass so forward that if you had shown it to an American he would have mistaken Bulls...

Brendan Venter
The price of player development
Not too long ago the Bulls boasted a very strong playing group which dominated Super Rugby....

Tony Johnson
There's nothing like a derby game
The most appealing and worthwhile element of Super Rugby to me, has always been the international...

Brenden Nel
The real problem with referees
Being a referee is tough work. Fans hurling abuse, players and coaches questioning every move you...

Gavin Rich
Plenty of positives from Loftus
The perennial questions about match officiating, particularly the parameters they work within, will...

Duane Heath
The long-life locks
Nico Luus may be one of the oldest players still active in South African rugby but the veteran lock...