Cheetahs on the prowl

Backline coach Hawies Fourie says Free State will employ an attacking approach against the Sharks in Bloemfontein.

The rotation of wings Jongi Nokwe and Lionel Mapoe have formed part of the Cheetahs’ strategy this season and Fourie says there are specific reasons why they alternate.

‘The changes between Nokwe and Mapoe are based on our game plans,’ Fourie told ‘If we prepare a kicking game, we tend to select Mapoe as he’s better under the high ball.

‘If we want more of an attacking approach, then Nokwe will start on the wing. That’s why he will start against the Sharks.’

However, Fourie admits the wet weather conditions may affect their approach.

‘Looking at the rain, our game plan might change. If it’s wet, then we will play a more of a kicking game. If not, then we will run the ball through the phases.’ he said.

Free State are under a lot of pressure after losing their three opening matches of the Currie Cup. Many believe Naka Drotske and co are not up to scratch, but Fourie – who acknowledges the fans’ frustration – believes there’s still a long way to go.

‘We are disappointed because we should have won our first two games [against Griquas and the Lions] and I can only imagine how the fans must feel, but we still have 11 games to make things happen. After all, we are improving every week.’

By Gareth Duncan