The Sharks have won their last three Super Rugby games on the bounce against the Cheetahs, including a come-from-behind win when they met last in Round 5, 2017.
The Cheetahs have won both of their two games in Super Rugby Unlocked, conceding just three first-half points in each of those fixtures.
- The Sharks have scored four tries within the opening 20 minutes of games during Super Rugby Unlocked, more than any other team in the competition.
- The Cheetahs have conceded fewer metres (197), clean breaks (3) and offloads (5) per game than any other team in Super Rugby Unlocked.
- Rosko Specman (Cheetahs) has gained 111 metres per game in Super Rugby Unlocked; he is the only player to have played multiple games and maintained an average of 100 metres or more per game.
We are waiting for the kick-off.
1.00: PEEEEP! We are underway at Kings Park, Durban.
3.00: Both teams using the boot in the early stages of the game.
6.00: The Sharks have eschewed two kicks at goal for lineouts, but the Cheetahs steal a turnover and go from their goal-line to the opposition’s 22 before winning a penalty at the breakdown.
8.00: Dylan Richardson conceded the penalty, the Cheetahs kick to the corner.
10.00: JP du Preez carries towards the try line, but he loses possession in the tackle. A scuffle breaks out before the ref calms everyone down for the scrum. Archie would have been throwing fists.
12.00: The scrum needs to be reset three times. The field is cutting up, and a bit slippery; however, the ref blows for a penalty against Charles Marais.
13.00: Cheetahs almost capitalise on a Curwin Bosch shanked the kick, but the ball went backwards before the Cheetahs cleared to touch.
15.00: This has been a very messy game, both teams making lots of unforced errors as they struggle with the damp conditions. There is nothing to write home about.
18.00: Bosch keeps kicking his side to safety as the visitors ill-discipline continues to hamper themselves.
20.00: The Sharks have opted for touch rather than the poles four times in the first quarter. That’s 12 points gone begging. Two lineouts have led to turnovers by the Free State side as the Sharks lineout misfires.
21.00: Chris Smit gets his head into the dark spaces, winning a penalty. Good work by Smit, who beat the attackers to the ruck.
23.00: The Cheetahs look rusty having not played for three weeks, the Sharks look poor, they have not been the same since that Bulls hiding.
25.00: Sanele Nohamba knocks-on at the base of the ruck, the home team had the visitors on the back foot, but the former DHS scrumhalf’s mistake, kills the opportunity.
26.00: Possession and territory are almost 50/50 in this tight contest. Sean Everitt’s men might rue not taking the points.
28.00: Tian Schoeman’s raking kick pins the hosts in the corner of their 22. Sharks take a quick lineout, and Nohamba clears.
30.00: JJ van der Mescht is getting some treatment from the medics, he took a knock to the head and is getting it strapped.
32.00: JP du Preez knocks-on his own lineout ball. The Sharks carry towards their 10m before winning a penalty at the ruck. Bosch kicks deep into the Cheetahs’ half.
33.00: The Sharks win a penalty after the Cheetahs infringe at the line out. Aidon Davis was adjudged to be “taking the man out in the air,” says the ref. Bosch, surprisingly, calls for the tee.
34.00: PENALTY! Bosch splits the uprights and opens the scoring. 3-0
35.00: The Cheetahs win a penalty after a sharks player took the man out in the air at the restart.
36.00: MISS! Schoeman shanks his penalty attempt well wide. 3-0
37.00: Rosko Specman knocks-on a certain try. Schoeman made the break, played Clayton Blommetjies, whose pass was hard and high to Specman. The sevens specialist really should be catching that and scoring.
39.00: Some more reset scrums at the end of the half.
40.00: Last chance for the Cheetahs; they have a lineout just outside the home 22. Another poor throw by Du Preez gives possession to the hosts to counter-attack.
41.00: YELLOW CARD! Carl Wegner is sent to the bin for an infringement at the ruck. The card is for multiple offences by the visitors. Bosch will take a shot from in front and 45 metres out.
42.00: PENALTY! Bosch doubles the lead. 6-0
The halftime score was Sharks 6 Cheetahs 0
41.00: PEEEEP! We are back underway in Durban.
43.00: More handling errors and poor discipline leads to a Sharks penalty. Bosch sets up the lineout on the Cheetahs’ 22m.
44.00: A good driving maul by the home side, the first time in the game, comes to nothing. Skipper Junior Pokomela saved the day for the Bloemfontein men.
46.00: Both teams go to the ‘Gary Owens’ in search of winning back the ball. The Sharks decide it’s time to keep possession and carry into the visitors’ half. Nohamba had his chip-kick charged down, but the ball landed back in the scrumhalf’s arms. He tries to kick-start an attack out wide, but the Cheetahs win a penalty.
47.00: Schoeman puts his team in a good attacking position, but the forwards botch another lineout. Nohamba clears the danger.
48.00: Retshegofaditswe Nche enters the maul from the side; penalty to the visitors. Schoeman calls for the tee this time.
49.00: PENALTY! Schoeman slots the wide kick and halves the deficit. 6-3
52.00: NO TRY! Jeremy Ward’s try is taken off the board after Manie Libbok’s infringement on Smit in the build-up.
54.00: MISS! Schoeman’s long-range kick is well short. 6-3
56.00: Bosch calls for the tee. The kick will be about 56 metres.
58.00: PENALTY! Bosch smashes the ball through the posts. WOW! 9-3
62.00: The Sharks look to be increasing the tempo, they are pinning the visitors inside their half. Good defending, however, pushed the Sharks backwards.
63.00: A knock-on by the Free State men gives the players some respite.
67.00: PENALTY! Shoeman reduces the gap to three after JJ van der Mescht’s reckless hit on the flyhalf. 9-6
71.00: TRY! Small-Smith scores to give the Cheetahs the lead. The pass from Schoeman was forward, but bizarrely, the TMO lets the call stand. 9-11
72.00: CONVERSION! Schoeman adds the extras. 9-13
73.00: Sharks are attacking, they look dangerous. Penalty to the hosts.
74.00: YELLOW CARD! Specman is sent to the bin for a deliberate knockdown. 9-13
76.00: TRY! Tambwe gathers Bosch’s pin-point crossfield kick, dances around the defender, and scores the Sharks’ first try. 14-13
78.00: CONVERSION! Bosch adds the extras. 16-13
80.00: Kickable penalty for the Sharks.
81.00: PENALTY! Bosch puts the game to bed with another long-range kick. Game over! 19-13
The final score is Sharks 19 (6) Cheetahs 13 (0)
Tries – Tambwe
Pen – Bosch (4)
Con – Bosch
Tries – Small-Smith
Pen – Schoeman (2)
Con – Schoeman
Cards – Wegner (Yellow, 41′), Specman (Yellow, 74′)
Referee: Cwengile Jadezweni
Assistant Ref 1: Marius van der Westhuizen
Assistant Ref 2: Paul Mente
TMO: Marius Jonker
15 Manie Libbok, 14 Yaw Penxe, 13 Jeremy Ward, 12 Marius Louw, 11 Madosh Tambwe, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Sanele Nohamba, 8 Phendulani Buthelezi, 7 Henco Venter (captain), 6 Dylan Richardson 5 Hyron Andrews, 4 JJ van der Mescht, 3 John Hubert-Meyer, 2 Dan Jooste, 1 Retshegofaditswe Nche
Replacements: 16 Kerron van Vuuren, 17 Mzamo Majola, 18 Michael Kumbirai, 19 Ruben van Heerden, 20 Thembelani Bholi, 21 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 22 Grant Williams, 23 Werner Kok
15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Malcolm Jaer, 13 William Small-Smith, 12 Chris Smit, 11 Rosko Specman, 10 Tian Schoeman, 9 Tian Meyer, 8 Aidon Davis, 7 Junior Pokomela (captain), 6 Andisa Ntsila, 5 JP du Preez, 4 Carl Wegner, 3 Luan de Bruin, 2 Reinach Venter, 1 Charles Marais
Replacements: 16 Jacques du Toit, 17 Boan Venter, 18 Khutha Mchunu, 19 Teboho Mohoje, 20 Jeandré Rudolph, 21 Ruben de Haas, 22 Reinhardt Fortuin, 23 Howard Msnisi