Super Rugby round six
Cheetahs backrow lays victory foundation
ESPN Staff
March 23, 2013
Date/Time: Mar 23, 2013, 18:40 local, 10:40 GMT
Venue: Perth Oval
Force 10 - 19 Cheetahs
Half-time: 7 - 6
Tries: Stanley
Cons: Ebersohn
Pens: Hayward
Tries: le Roux
Cons: Smit
Pens: Smit 4
The Cheetahs' Heinrich Brussow passes the ball against the Force, Western Force v Cheetahs, Super Rugby, nib Stadium, Perth, March 23, 2013
Heinrich Brussow was magnificent for the Cheetahs
© Getty Images

The Cheetahs have completed a hat-trick of victories on tour, defeating Western Force at nib Stadium in Perth on the back of a fantastic defensive effort.

The Force were confident of victory in their first home game of the season, after shocking Queensland Reds in Brisbane in the previous round, and they looked to be on the path for back-to-back wins when Winston Stanley crashed over for a converted try in the right corner after 26 minutes to capitalise on turnover ball.

But the Force were unable to break the Cheetahs defence again, lacking either width or vision, with the visitors' backrowers Heinrich Brussow, Pieter Labuschagne and Phillip Van Der Walt magnificent.

The hosts also paid a heavy price for three missed penalty goals, two from Sias Ebersohn and one from Jayden Hayward, as well as a missed drop goal from Kyle Godwin.

Cheetahs fly-half Riaan Smit, selected only because of the season-ending knee injury for Johan Goosen, conversely kept the scoreboard ticking over as the Force paid for ill-discipline. He landed a perfect four penalties before converting a breakaway try from Willie Le Roux, the winger scoring at the death after the five-eighth had monstered Force backrower Ben McCalman in defence.

Neither captain was happy with their team's performance, with the Cheetahs' Adriaan Strauss saying "I don't think we played our best rugby of the season ... we didn't stick to our structures today and we're actually quite lucky to get the win" while Pek Cowan said the Force "didn't front-up".

"We knew we couldn't just show up tonight," Cowan said. "It was a disappointing effort. There was a lot of positives again, but we have to make sure we focus and play for 80 minutes. We went away from what we wanted to do tonight. We didn't deliver tonight."

© ESPN Australia / New Zealand

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