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Cats 21 Chiefs 16


This is the first match report that I did from the media centre at Ellis Park, hopefully the first of many to come:

Cats in spectacular win

Chiefs concede too many penalties and it cost them in the end

The Cats showed great character to come from a 9-16 deficit at halftime to win the game 21-16, and even though they didn't score any tries, won their first Super 14 match and recorded their first four log points.

The game started in perfect weather, but a mere 16 minutes into the game the rain came down, and I was worried that we would see a repeat of last Saturday's unattractive game against the Stormers. Luckily it stopped after about 15 minutes, and did not have such a great influence on the game.

Early on the Chiefs established an overlap on the right, with Rose needing to make the tackle from Fullback, and at the breakdown the Chiefs winger Anesi held on, but Snyman wasn't able to convert the penalty from the halfway line.

The Chiefs got the first points from a penalty kicked by Donald from the Cats 22 meter line, 3-0 for the Chiefs.

Minutes later the Cats were awarded a free kick after a scrum on the Chiefs 22 meter line, taken quick by Januarie, who passed to Wikus van Heerden who got through two or three tackles and was stopped just short of the line. The Chiefs infringed and Snyman made no mistake with the penalty this time, 3 all the score.  

12 minutes into the game the Cats tighthead Daniel Muller was penalised at a scrum in the middle of the field, once again easlily converted by Donald, 6-3 for the Chiefs.

As the rain started to fall 16 minutes into the game, Willemse kicked an up-and-under on Sivivatu, who caught it, but Willemse tackled him, and Sivivatu dropped the ball for a Cats scrum just outside the 22 meter line of the Chiefs. At this scrum the Cats got another free kick, once again taken quick by Januarie, but Ernst Joubert ran too close to the touch line and the Chiefs snuffed out the move.

19 minutes into the game touch judge Pritchard brought an illegal shoulder charge to the attention of Stuart Dickinson, who awarded the Cats a penalty on the 10 meter line of the Chiefs, in the middle of the field. Snyman converted to make the score 6-6.

In the 25th minute the Chiefs went offside at a scrum just outside their 22, and Snyman kicked the easy penalty for a 9-6 lead for the Cats.

This seemed to spur the Chiefs on to lift their game, and they were almost through on the left but Ernst Joubert made a spectacular cover tackle. Unfortunately the Chiefs still managed to recycle the ball, and Tuitupou got the ball and ran in a simple try, although he still had to get past Rose. Donald converted to give the Chiefs a 13-9 lead. 

In the 33rd minute Snyman kicked a great touchfinder with the right boot, to put the Cats in a great field postion inside the Chiefs 22, but the Cats wasn't able to capatalise on this.

The Chiefs had another great opportunity on the left with 3 minutes to go in the first half, but once again the Cats tackling was solid, this time from Januarie and the Chiefs were bundled out on the halfway line. 

Willem Stoltz was red-carded for kicking with 2 minutes to go in the 1st half, and Donald also converted the resulting penalty, 16-9 lead for the Chiefs, also the halftime score.

In the second half Kleinjan Tromp started for Ernst Joubert and Wylie Human for Ashwin Willemse. 

After just two minutes the Chiefs got a penalty on the halfway line, luckily pulled left by Donald.

4 minutes into the second half Sephaka came on for Muller.

The Cats were awarded a penalty on the Chiefs 22 when the Chiefs went offside at a scrum, and Wikus opted to go for the line-out, taken nicely by Tromp, but instead of setting up the maul he got rid of the ball too quick, passing to Wikus who was isolated and from 2nd phase ball, Snyman attempted a dropgoal, but it went wide.

12 minutes into the 2nd half the Chiefs again infringed at a scrum, this time deep in their 22, but Snyman missed the kick to the right, he was on 3 out of 6 at this stage.

2 minutes later the Chiefs were penalised for a high tackle, Snyman missed the difficult kick to the left this time.

18 minutes into the 2nd half the Cats got another penalty, this time Earl Rose took the kick and he got it over to reduce the Chiefs lead to 16-12.

23 minutes into the 2nd half the Cats again got a penalty just inside the Chiefs half, this time Rose missed it to the right.

2 minutes later, another Cats penalty when the Chiefs knocked a high ball, and a player in an offside position played it. Rightly so Snyman got to kick this one, he made it and the Chiefs lead now only 16-15.

With 6 minutes to go, the Cats had a line out midway between the Chiefs 22 and 10 meter lines, they set up a ruck, where Marty Holah played the ball on the ground, he was yellow carded and Snyman also kicked the penalty, the Cats now in the lead 18-16.

Just after this the Chiefs had a line-out just inside the Cats half, they slapped it and was put under pressure, and was blown for holding on. Snyman added another one, Cats leading 21-16.

In the thrilling last five minutes or so, the Cats managed to hang on for the win.

The scorers:

For the Cats:
Snyman 6, Rose 1

For the Chiefs:
Tuitupou 1
Cons:  Donald 1
Pens: Donald 3

Yellow cards: Marty Holah (Chiefs, 73)
Red card: Willem Stoltz (Cats, 38)

Cats: 15 Earl Rose, 14 Ashwin Willemse, 13 Grant Esterhuizen, 12 Wayne Julies, 11 Jaque Fourie, 10 Tiaan Snyman, 9 Enrico Januarie, 8 Ernst Joubert, 7 Wikus van Heerden (Captain), 6 Cobus Grobbelaar, 5 Willem Stoltz, 4 Trevor Hall, 3 Daniel Muller, 2 Lukas van Biljon, 1 Pietman van Niekerk.
Replacements: 16 Delarey du Preez, 17 Lawrence Sephaka, 18 Kleinjan Tromp, 19 Gerhard Vosloo, 20 Jano Vermaak, 21 Doppies la Grange, 22 Wylie Human.
Chiefs: 15 Mils Muliaina, 14 Sosene Anesi, 13 Mark Ranby, 12 Sam Tuitupou, 11 Sitiveni Sivivatu, 10 Stephen Donald, 9 Jamie Nutbrown, 8 Sione Lauaki, 7 Marty Holah, 6 Steven Bates, 5 Bernie Upton, 4 Kristian Ormsby, 3 Deacon Manu, 2 Tom Willis (Captain), 1 Simms Davison.
Replacements: 16 Aleki Lutui, 17 Ben Castle, 18 Jono Gibbes, 19 Liam Messam, 20 Byron Kelleher, 21 Loki Crichton, 22 Anthony Tahana.                           
Referee: Stuart Dickinson (Australia)
Touch judges: Julian Pritchard (), Linston Manuels (Boland)
TV Match Official: Chris du Preez

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