KSA Shark ©

Victory has a price for the Chiefs

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :Cheetahs, In the news, Super 14 on 19 Apr 2009 at 07:15
Tagged with : , , , , ,

A worrying injury to Brendon Leonard and citings against Richard Kahui and James McGougan have clouded an outstanding win for the Chiefs in South Africa.

Ian Foster’s side scored an emphatic 28-10 victory over the Cheetahs in Kimberley to go top of the table in an extremely tight Super 14 playoffs race.

But victory has come at a price.

Leonard, the All Blacks No 9 who has been the form halfback of the tournament, has picked up a sternum injury that looks as though it will end his tour.

Duncan Johnstone writes for Rugbyheaven Aus that Chiefs coach Ian Foster said Leonard’s injury would be assessed over the next 24 hours but it was highly likely they would need to fly over a replacement.

The initial diagnosis suggested Leonard could be out for two weeks.

The Chiefs face the Bulls and Stormers over the next two weekends as they look to capitalise on their table-topping position that comes after six consecutive wins.

David Bason is the halfback in the Chiefs wider training group back in New Zealand.

Toby Morland did an outstanding job off the bench when he replaced Leonard and Foster was rich in his praise for the impact the Chiefs’ reserves made.

The Chiefs trailed 6-7 at halftime but responded with three second half tries to secure and rare – and crucial win – in South Africa.

Foster revealed there were citings hanging over Kahui and McGougan that would occupy a fair bit of their time in the next day.

Tighthead prop McGougan was cited for allegedly trampling on a player in the 58th minute of the match.

Classy centre Kahui was in trouble for an alleged dangerous tackle on Cheetahs replacement Frans Viljoen in the 78th minute.

The hearings were to be held in Kimberley on Sunday (local time).

Kahui had shrugged off a hip injury to start against the Cheetahs and was an influential figure.

The Chiefs wouldn’t want to be without him for their match against the Bulls in Pretoria next week.

It is unlikely they will have wonder wing Sitiveni Sivivatu for that match. He is still in New Zealand with his shoulder injury and a decision on getting him to South Africa has yet to be made.

Chuffed at being at the top of the table, Foster said is was now a matter of “trucking on” and sticking to the formula that had got them this far.

He was clearly thrilled with the effort of his team overnight.

“We are delighted. We really targeted this first game. It was important for us to get our confidence up b winning in South Africa,” he said.

“It was a big psychological win for us … the team are feeling good.

“There were a couple of variables that we worked hard on – coming back from the bye and the travel and playing first at altitude.

“So there were a few things we had to deal with and I thought it was a fantastic result for us. I’m very proud of them.”

Foster said while the first half didn’t produce the points, he believed it set up the win.

“We dominated possession and territory. I guess you have to give a lot of credit to their defence. They were very staunch and they made us work for everything. We had a few linebreaks and opportunities that we weren’t able to capitalise on.

“So it was a little bit frustrating at halftime but we did feel that we had taken a lot of energy out of their legs and we just wanted to keep playing at that tempo.

“I think the fitness of the team is good and certainly the way the boys off the bench are able to up the ante and contribute … that last 25-30 minutes was really positive for us.

“I think in the second half we found our rhythm and our second wind.

“This was a good solid win. I thought our set piece was good and our scrum was relay strong.”

The Chiefs now travel to Cape Town where they will base themselves at sea level for the next two weeks. They will fly up to Pretoria for their clash with the Bulls and then return to the cape to play the Stormers.

“We think that’s the best way to do things. It will add some variation to our three weeks away,” said Foster.


  • So if they lose Leonard AND the two cited players then it help the chances of the Bulls winning next week. 😎

  • Comment 1, posted at 19.04.09 07:21:58 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 1) : all of which means it’s still possible for the Bulls to finish top.

    Ain’t gonna help us squat.

  • Comment 2, posted at 19.04.09 08:24:06 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 2) :
    But we then revert to DB’s comments. If we can’t beat the bulls we don’t deserve to win the comp.

    If things pan out the way they should it will be Sharks v Bulls in Dbn on 16 May to decide which Sa side finishes the highest.

    And if we lose another game before then then I will be rooting for the Bulls to go all the way.

  • Comment 3, posted at 19.04.09 08:37:33 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 3) : not so sure, dude. Our semi-final destiny is no longer in our hands. We will start the next round probably in 5th spot. In fact, it will be better for us if the Chiefs beat the Bulls, because then we’ll end up playing the Bulls for 4th.

    Chiefs, Canes and Blues can all finish above us

  • Comment 4, posted at 19.04.09 08:42:43 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 4) : just had another look. If the Crusaders score a BP against the Cheetahs (not a big ask) they’ll be ahead of us too.

    We could be 6th after the bye

  • Comment 5, posted at 19.04.09 08:47:19 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • and the only team we still need to play that will be above us on the log is the Bulls.

    We’re screwed. Thanks guys.

  • Comment 6, posted at 19.04.09 08:47:51 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 5) :

    Best you DO come back after the weekend 😆 The Gloom is clouding your judgement.

    We are 36 PD points ahead of the Crusaders. If they get a BP they will still have to beat the Cheetahs by >36 points to go above us. it ain’t gonna happen. 🙂

  • Comment 7, posted at 19.04.09 08:58:18 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 7) : just like the Bulls had to beat the Reds by 80+ points a few years ago? And they then did!

  • Comment 8, posted at 19.04.09 09:46:35 by JustPlainSHARK Reply

  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 7) : maybe not this week… but there are still 3 rounds after that and we’re not looking good, to be honest. Certainly not going to pick up 15 more points

  • Comment 9, posted at 19.04.09 09:49:40 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 9) :

    A rest will do them all good and we will come back firing.

  • Comment 10, posted at 19.04.09 09:56:39 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Chiefs are looking good – the Cheetahs turned up to play!

    I think the Sharks will be able to step it up with Jean and Ruan back – allowing Kanko to play his natural game, and Frans to stop screwing up the backline.

    Only need to do something about Kockott now…

  • Comment 11, posted at 19.04.09 10:16:57 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • The Chiefs have paid a dear price for their impressive 28-10 win over the Cheetahs on the first match of their three-week South African Super 14 tour.

    All Black scrumhalf Brendon Leonard is the latest player to be added to a high-profile casualty list.

    The good news is that All Black centre Richard Kahui and no-nonsense prop James McGougan have both been cleared to play in the next match – against the third-placed Bulls in Pretoria on Saturday.

    However, the Chiefs are likely to be without Leonard for the remainder of their tour, which also sees them tackle the Stormers in Cape Town a week after the Bulls.

    The scrumhalf suffered a sternum injury in the big win over the Cheetahs in Kimberley ate the weekend.

    Leonard will need further scans on the injury before a definite prognosis is made.

    However, it is expected he will be out for at least two weeks.

  • Comment 12, posted at 20.04.09 07:59:08 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©

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