Pro14: Cardiff Blues 25-20 Cheetahs
|Pro14: Cardiff Blues v Cheetahs|
|Cardiff Blues: (15) 25|
|Tries: Lee-Lo, E Jenkins, N Williams Cons: J Evans 2 Pens: J Evans 2|
|Cheetahs: (10) 20|
|Tries: Nche, Cassiem Cons: Barry, Zeilinga Pens: Zeilinga 2|
Cardiff Blues’ first Pro14 match against South African opposition ended in a 25-20 victory at the Arms Park.
The Cheetahs lead through Ox Nche’s try but tries Ray Lee-Lo and Ellis Jenkins gave the Blues a half-time lead.
Nick Williams powerful run extended the Blues lead only for Uzair Cassiem’s converted try to cancel it out a two minutes later.
Despite a late onslaught from the Cheetahs the Blues’ defence held firm to secure the win.
Victory moves to Blues back into fourth place following Connacht’s 26-15 win over Ospreys on Friday.
The Cheetahs stay in third place, 12 points ahead of the Blues and seven behind second place Munster.
Ox Nche got the visitors off to the perfect start after four minutes. Despite the best efforts of several Blues players the forward powered his way over to open the score.
Fred Zeilinga extended the Cheetah’s lead but a yellow card for former Scarlet Rynier Bernardo turned the game in the Blues’ favour.
Ray Le-Loo and Ellis Jenkins, fresh from his release from the Wales squad, went over for the home side before Jarrod Evans’ penalty gave the Welsh region a 15-10 half-time lead.
The Blues had several chances to extend their lead in the second half before Nick Williams bundled over following an attacking scrum to extend his side’s lead.
However, the try was cancelled out almost immediately by the Cheetahs, number eight Uzair Cassiem closing the deficit with just 15 minutes remaining.
Evans extended the Blues’ lead once again from the boot and, despite a spirited attempt from the South African side, the Welsh region held on.
Cardiff Blues: Rhun Williams; Aled Summerhill, Garyn Smith, Rey Lee-Lo, Owen Lane; Jarrod Evans, Lloyd Williams; Gethin Jenkins (capt), Matthew Rees, Anton Peikrishvili, George Earle, Seb Davies, Macauley Cook, Ellis Jenkins, Nick Williams.
Replacements: Kirby Myhill, Brad Thyer, Dillon Lewis, Josh Turnbull, Olly Robinson, Tomos Williams, Dan Fish, Ryan Edwards
Cheetahs: Clayton Blommetjies; Craig Barry, Francois Venter (capt), Nico Lee, Sibhale Maxwano; Fred Zeilinga, Shaun Venter; Ox Nche, Torsten Van Jaarsveld, Johan Coetzee, Justin Basson, Rynier Bernardo, Paul Schoeman, Oupa Mohoje, Uzair Cassiem.
Replacements: Jacques Du Toit, Charles Marais, Tom Botha, Carl Wegner, Henco Venter, Zee Mkhabela, Niel Marais, Malcolm Jaer.
Referee: Ian Davies (WRU)
Assistant referees: Rhys Thomas (WRU), Rob Price (WRU)
TMO: Jon Mason (WRU)