Force notch first win of the season
February 20, 2009
The Cheetahs' Meyer Bosman is tackled by David Pocock and Matt Giteau of the Western Force
© Getty Images
Western Force opened their Super 14 account with a 16-10 victory over the Cheetahs at the Subiaco Oval in Perth.
Each side scored one try, with the boot of Force fly-half Matt Giteau proving to be the difference in a dour, defensive struggle. The result makes it four straight victories for the Force over the team from Bloemfontein, three by six points or less.
Giteau opened the scoring with a ninth-minute penalty but the Cheetahs went on to dominate much of the half and were twice denied tries by the Television Match Oofficial, first for being short of the line and a second time for a knock-on.
In the end it was the home side who scored next, when 18-year-old centre James O'Connor stepped his way through the defence to dot down next to the posts. Giteau's straightforward conversion made the score 10-0 but the Cheetahs soon hit back.
Fabian Julies put a grubber kick through for fellow winger Danwel Demas who cleverly toed ahead before beating Ryan Cross to the line. Jacques-Louis Potgieter cut the margin to three points with the conversion.
A penalty from Giteau in the dying seconds of the half sent the home side into the break ahead 13-7.
Shortly after the re-start Cheetahs prop Wian du Preez was issued a yellow card by referee James Leckie for repeat infringements at the breakdown and Giteau took advantage of the extra man by slotting a drop goal to take the lead out to nine points.
Potgieter again reduced the margin when he slotted a 45m penalty with twenty minutes to go but they were unable to overhaul the hosts.
Western Force: Cameron Shepherd, Nick Cummins, Ryan Cross, James O'Connor, Drew Mitchell, Matt Giteau, Josh Valentine, Gareth Hardy, Tai McIsaac, Ben Castle, Pat O'Connor, Nathan Sharpe (captain), Tamaiti Horua, David Pocock, Richard Brown
Replacements: Luke Holmes, Kieran Longbottom, Tom Hockings, Matt Hodgson, Chris O'Young, Josh Tatupu, Scott Staniforth
Cheetahs: Hennie Daniller; Fabian Juries, Piet van Zyl, Jacques-Louis Potgieter, Danwel Demas; Meyer Bosman, Tewis de Bruyn; Wian du Preez, Adriaan Strauss, Bees Roux, Nico Breedt, David de Villiers, Heinrich Brüssow, Juan Smith (captain), Frans Viljoen
Replacements: Richardt Strauss, Kobus Calldo, Wayne van Heerden, Hendro Scholtz, Sarel Pretorius, Bjorn Basson, Hanno Coetzee.