The Cheetahs may have defeated the Reds 10-6 in a dour Super 14 match played in Bloemfontein on Friday night, but it was not a great performance for a team chasing a semi-final berth.
The Cheetahs did not look convincing at all, against a Reds team languishing near the bottom of the table, but a win is a win, and Rassie Erasmus and his team will gladly take the four hard-earned points, ahead of their overseas adventure.
The Reds very nearly snatched the game in the 78th minute when a Cheetahs attack fell apart near the Australians' line, and they kicked ahead only for Gaffie du Toit to fall on the ball in his own 22, followed by three Reds players illegally falling on him.
The Cheetahs now move to fifth on the log, one ahead of the Bulls, the next best South African team. The Reds made the most of an insipid first half to lead 3-0 via a penalty by centre Julian Huxley.
Apart from that effort there was not too much else happening in what must rank as one of the poorest opening 40 minutes in Super rugby history.
The Cheetahs made sure of the win with Meyer Bosman kicking a penalty and a conversion and Barry Goodes scoring a try midway through the second period. For the Cheetahs stand-in captain Ryno van der Merwe was excellent.
The Cheetahs had an opportunity in the fifth minute to score points but Bosman missed a penalty from a similar spot to his awful conversion miss against the Bulls in round one.
That miss seemed to set the tone for the rest of the half as both teams missed opportunities to unforced errors and disciplined defence.
The defence was of a high standard but not so much that no points other than a solitary kick were scored.
Try: Barry Goodes.
Conversion: Meyer Bosman (1).
Penalties: Meyer Bosman (1).
Penalties: Julian Huxley (2).
Source : Sapa /ah