Rassie rebuilds

Coach Rassie Erasmus is looking to plug the leaks of the Cheetahs battleship that sprung during the Super 14.

After winning four out of their first six matches in South Africa, the Currie Cup champions finished a disappointing 10th in the regional tournament, losing all four overseas matches and going down to the Blues and Force at home.

“Our ball retention wasn’t great and we had a problem with our continuity,” Erasmus admitted to keo.co.za. “These are two parts of the game we are trying to improve.”

The Cheetahs adopted an expansive approach at times during the Super 14, but how they play in the Currie Cup will depend on the opposition.

“It may sound like a cliche, but we do need to take every game as it comes,” said Erasmus. “When we play against the more physical Bulls, we may throw it wide, whereas when we play the Sharks, we may keep it a little tighter.”

The Cheetahs have lost some key players to the Boks, but it is not certain how big a part the likes of Gaffie Du Toit and Jannie Du Plessis will play in Jake White’s immediate plans.

“We are still waiting to hear from Jake, but at the moment we are down six players to the Springboks.”

Having said that, Erasmus admits that there is still a multitude of talent at his disposal.

“We have a very competitive pack and a solid backline this year. We may not have had a great Super 14, but it gave players such as Bevin Fortuin, who has played many games for SWD, much needed experience at a higher level.”

By Jon Cardinelli