The Stormers thrashed a hapless Cheetahs 53-10 at Newlands in Cape Town to claim a bonus-point and remain unbeaten this campaign.
Sikhumbuzo Notshe scored a hat-trick and Dyllin Leyds got a double as the Stormers racked up a half century.
Robert Du Preez scored 16 points with a try, four conversions and a penalty.
There were also tries for Dan du Plessis and captain Siya Kolisi as the Stormers ran riot.
The Cape side opened the scoring through Du Preez’s early penalty before Leyds scored his first of the game.
He collected the ball inside the opposition’s 22 and beat Niel Marais’s cover defence after Sergeal Petersen, jumped inside to attempt to break up the play.
Zeilinga cut the lead to 8-3 but that was as close as the Cheetahs got the rest of the game.
Notshe got his first try of the season after collecting SP Marais’ wonderful release. The fullback ran onto the flat pass, dummied and beat the defenders to the sideline to set up the No 8.
Another mistake by the visitors from a misplaced kick saw the Stormers have a scrum in the middle of the field and in good attacking position.
They moved the ball left, at speed and Du Plessis gathered the ball from Du Preez, who drew the defence, sending the ball to EW Viljoen to put Leyds clear.
The half time score was 22-3 and it got worse in the second 40 minutes as the Stormers ran away with the game, scoring another four tries
Du Plessis scored soon after the restart. It started when the ball went straight into touch and the Stormers had a scrum.
SP Marais sucked in two defenders and offloaded a pass to the centre, who slipped through the gap on the inside to score.
Du Preez’s conversion made it 29-3 and the game was effectively over, despite the Cheetahs hitting back with a powerful driving maul for Paul Schoeman; the conversion was the last scoring play for Franco Smith’s men.
The Stormers, instead of relaxing, upped the tempo and proceeded to put the cheetahs to the sword with some expert finishing.
Du Preez was soon in on the act, scoring a wonderful solo try of ingenuity. The standoff put in a little chip kick, regathered and sped away unchallenged to score.
His kick completed his day and a 16-point haul as he was replaced by Kurt Coleman, possibly as a precaution because he did limp in the act of dotting the ball, although, it looked like cramp.
Robbie Fleck was not taking any chances.
The Cheetahs were wilting in the face of the attacking surge by the hosts and the skipper decided to get in on the act, scoring with 20 minutes to play and take the tally.
Kolisi stepped on the inside from close range and beat Nico Lee; Coleman added the extras, 41-10.
It was damage limitation for the Free Staters but, in all honesty, it should have started midway through the first half.
There was enough time for Notshe to complete a quick double and a match treble. First, the No 8 collected SP Marais’s inside pass as the fullback was getting tackled into touch. He managed to release his team mate. It all started from EW Viljoen with another burst of pace in the midfield.
He managed to release his team-mate after another EW Viljoen break in the midfield.
Henco Venter thought he was going to score after a lung-busting burst from halfway.
However, the loose-forward was caught by Cheslin Kolbe, who continued to track Venter and bring him down short of the whitewash. being
In the process of scoring, he stretched but lost the ball forward to the delight of the Newlands faithful, and to his horror.
With time running out, Notshe completed his excellent afternoon, taking a pass from Kolbe – boy, does he get around the field – to run away and finish a disastrous outing in the western province for the Cheetahs.
The hat-trick brought up the half century and kept the Stormers ahead of the chasing Jaguares in their conference with another home win and, in the process, seal an emphatic 43-point victory.
Final score is Stormers 53 (22) Cheetahs 10 (3)
Tries – Leyds (2), Notshe (3), Du Plessis, Du Preez, Kolisi
Pen – Du Preez
Con – Du Preez (4), Coleman
Tries – Schoeman
Pen – Zeilinga
Con – Zeilinga
Referee: Rasta Rasivhenge
Assistant Ref 1: Quinton Immelman
Assistant Ref 2: Cwengile Jadezweni
TMO: Shaun Veldsman
15 SP Marais, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 EW Viljoen, 12 Dan du Plessis, 11 Dillyn Leyds, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Siya Kolisi (captain), 6 Cobus Wiese, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Eben Etzebeth , 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Replacements: 16 Ramone Samuels, 17 Caylib Oosthuizen, 18 Oliver Kebble, 19 Chris van Zyl, 20 Nizaam Carr, 21 Dewaldt Duvenage, 22 Kurt Coleman, 23 Dan Kriel.
15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Francois Venter (captain), 12 Niel Marais, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Shaun Venter, 8 Henco Venter, 7 Teboho Mohoje, 6 Paul Schoeman, 5 Francois Uys, 4 Armandt Koster, 3 Johan Coetzee, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld, 1 Charles Marais.
Replacements: 16 Elandré Huggett, 17 Retshegofaditswe Nche 18 Tom Botha, 19 Carl Wegner, 20 Niell Jordaan, 21 Tian Meyer, 22 Nico Lee, 23 Luther Obi