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Bulls finish with bonus point win over Cheetahs

Jesse Kriel on the attack for the Bulls

The Bulls wrapped up their 2016 Super Rugby season with a 17-43 bonus point victory over the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein.

Both of the teams had been eliminated from the the play offs so they were playing for pride.

The Bulls outscored the Cheetahs by five tries to two in the match with the Bulls bonus point try coming in the last minute of the match.

Renaldo Bothma and Travis Ismaiel scored two tries each for the Bulls and Jamba Ulengo scored their fifth try. Clayton Blommetjies and  Carl Wegner scored tries for the Cheetahs.

Although the Cheetahs scored two late tries, the Bulls dominated for much of the encounter as they underlined their ability with ball in hand.

Ultimately, the bonus point win for the Bulls meant little as they failed to progress to the playoffs. For the Cheetahs, it was their fifth loss in their last 10 games at home against South African opposition.

The visitors moved into a 6-0 lead after 14 minutes with Bulls flyhalf Tian Schoeman slotting two penalties.

The Cheetahs got on the board in the 21st minute when Cheetahs number 10 Fred Zeilinga nailed a penalty to make it 3-6.

It would not be long, however, before the Bulls scored the first try of the match in the 25th minute. A straightforward backline move by the Pretoria outfit proved too much to handle for the hosts as Bulls wing Travis Ismaiel barged over for the score. Schoeman was unable to add the extra two, but the Bulls held on for a 3-11 lead.

Three minutes later, the Bulls scored their second try. The Bulls were gifted another score as number 8 Renaldo Bothma gathered a short ball from a lineout and ran unhindered through a vacant Cheetahs defence to dot down under the posts. Schoeman chipped the ball over for the conversion to make it 3-18.

After 10 minutes play in the second half, Schoeman added another three for the Bulls with a penalty taking the score to 3-21.

Cheetahs fullback Clayton Blommetjies scored the first try of the match for his side after the hosts worked through a number of phases in the Bulls 22. The final ball fell to Blommetjies who barged through his tackler to dot down over the line. Zeilinga made it 10-21 with a successful conversion.

The Bulls poached a try in the 58th minute when Bothma was quick to react to Blommetjies holding onto the ball in his own 22. Bothma showed his strength to steal the ball from the number 15 at the breakdown before darting over for the try. Schoeman added the conversion.

On the hour mark, Schoeman took the score to 10-31 with another penalty.

The Bulls were over for another try in the 66th minute, as they worked the ball through the hands quickly in the Cheetahs 22 with Ismaiel beating his marker to go over in the corner. Schoeman missed the conversion, but the Bulls had effectively sealed the contest beyond doubt at 36-10 ahead.

The Cheetahs scored a try in the 76th minute as replacement lock Carl Wegner pulled five Bulls defenders over the line with him. The conversion was good from Zeilinga to make it 17-36.

Jamba Ulengo provided the final try on the night for the Bulls as he caught a poorly-executed clearance by the Cheetahs in their own 22, and he sprinted over the whitewash to help secure a comprehensive scoreline.

Francois Brummer slotted the conversion from the touchline.

The Bulls finish the season in 9th place overall with 9 wins from 15 matches while the Cheetahs finish the season in 13th place with four wins from 15.

Final Score Cheetahs 17 (3) Bulls 43 (18) 

Scorers

Cheetahs
Tries – C.Blommetjies, C.Wegner
Pen – F.Zeilinga
Con – F.Zeilinga, Brummer
Drop –
Cards –

Bulls
Tries -T. Ismaiel 2, R.Bothma 2, J.Ulengo
Pen – T.Schoeman 3
Con – T.Schoeman 2, F.Brummer
Drop –
Cards –

Attendance : 14078

Match Officials
Referee: Craig Joubert
Assistant Ref 1:AJ Jacobs
Assistant Ref 2:Lourens van der Merwe
TMO : Johan Greeff

Teams

Cheetahs

1. Charles Marais , 2. Torsten van Jaarsveld , 3. Maks van Dyk , 4. Armandt Koster , 5. Francois Uys , 6. Uzair Cassiem , 7. Oupa Mohoje (C) , 8. Paul Schoeman , 9. Shaun Venter , 10. Fred Zeilinga , 11. Raymond Rhule , 12. Michael van der Spuy , 13. William Small-Smith (VC) , 14. Sergeal Petersen , 15. Clayton Blommetjies

Replacements: 16. Joseph Dweba , 17. Ox Nche , 18. Johan Coetzee , 19. Reniel Hugo , 20. Carl Wegner , 21. Tian Meyer , 22. George Whitehead , 23. Ryno Benjamin

Bulls

Jesse Kriel, Jamba Ulengo, Dries Swanepoel, Burger Odendaal, Travis Ismaiel, Tian Schoeman, Piet van Zyl, Renaldo Bothma, Jannes Kirsten, Lappies Labuschagne, Marvin Orie, Jason Jenkins, Marcel van der Merwe, Adriaan Strauss (c), Pierre Schoeman.

Replacements: Bandise Maku, Nqoba Mxoli, Werner Kruger, Grant Hattingh, Arno Botha, Rudy Paige, Francois Brummer, SP Marais.