Cheetahs lick wounds

The Cheetahs suffered injuries to Frans Viljoen, Lionel Mapoe and Hendro Scholtz in their 21-8 defeat to the Stormers on Saturday.

Eighthman Viljoen (broken jaw) and wing Mapoe (shoulder) are expected to be out for six weeks, while Scholtz (ankle) could miss the Cheetahs clash with the Reds next weekend in Bloemfontein.

‘Frans and Lionel will have scans in Bloemfontein when we get back, but they will probably be out for a while,’ head coach Naka Drotske told keo.co.za. ‘Hendro’s injuries not too serious, so we hope he will be back in time next week.’

Meanwhile, Drotske said he was impressed with his team’s effort against the Stormers.

‘I don’t think we performed that poorly, we just lost to a very good side,’ said Drotske. ‘I was very happy with our defence. They had to work hard for their tries.

‘We also tried to expose them with a tactical kicking game. We understood that they are best defensive side in the competition, so we tried to get them in a one-on-one situation by kicking the ball into spaces. I believe that worked very well for us and we scored our try through a chip.

‘In the second half, we tried to run the ball through the phases. I think if we continued with our kicking plan, we would’ve scored one or two more tries.’

The Cheetahs host the Reds next weekend before they embark on their tour Down Under. Drotske said a win will be vital against the Queensland franchise.

‘We want to go on tour on a positive note. The Reds are a different team and have a poor away record. So we will look for a win against them,’ he said.

By Gareth Duncan