This result will have satisfied both teams. But the Cavaliers will be happier as the Cheetahs defence looked as frail as a narcoleptic geriatric, leaking six tries.
Petros Augousti writes for the Sunday Times that the Cavaliers ensured their top-flight status with a four-try bonus point here yesterday and the Cheetahs booked their semifinal berth with their five points.
The Cavaliers were expected to fight like feral cats with their Currie Cup survival on the line and they started brilliantly, scoring the first try in the fourth minute when captain and soon-to- be Boland hero, centre Piet Van Zyl, barged over for the first of his hat trick.
Cheetahs captain Juan Smith took advantage of a patient build- up in the 13th minute and scored under the crossbar. Jacques- Louis Potgieter slotted the conversion. The Cheetahs started flexing their muscles and flanker Heinrich Brussouw scored his team’s second try.
But the Cheetahs leaked a second try, to flank Josh Strauss, and after 22 minutes the score was 14- 14. A magical break by Cheetahs scrumhalf Tewis de Bruyn resulted in try No3.
The Cavaliers lost eighthman David Hendricks to a yellow card after 30 minutes and a more clinical team would have taken advantage of the 14-man Cavaliers, who were reduced to 13 when replacement loose-forward Angelo Brinkhuys was also sin- binned.
The Cheetahs started the second half well, securing a bonus point when Jongi Nokwe showed that genuine speed is vital for a winger, scoring under the bar.
When the Cheetahs click they are a joy to watch and Smith nabbed a brace before the 50- minute mark. But the truth is, the Cheetahs only look like champions-elect against the minnows.
Nico Breedt scored the team’s sixth try, De Bruyn converting.
The Cavaliers’ dream of top- flight survival was made a reality when Van Zyl scored his second and third tries. At 42-28 up the Cheetahs looked vulnerable.
As the game opened up reserve flanker Schalk van der Merwe scored the Cheetahs’ seventh try and Elgar Watts scored the Cavaliers fifth. At 47-35, with 10 minutes left, a win was not certain.
The Cheetahs showed their nervousness when they kicked a penalty at goal to finally subdue the gutsy Bolanders. The Cavaliers had the final say with a sixth try via wing Deon Scholtz.
Cheetahs 50 — Tries: Juan Smith (2), Heinrich Brussouw, Tewis de Bruyn, Jongi Nokwe, Nico Breedt, Schalk van der Merwe. Conversions: Jacques-Louis Potgieter (5), Tewis de Bruyn. Penalties: Jacques-Louis Potgieter.
Cavaliers 40 — Tries: Piet van Zyl (3), Josh Strauss, Elgar Watts, Deon Scholtz. Conversions: Justin Peach (4), Elgar Watts.Tweet