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Super Rugby: Cheetahs upset the Brumbies in Bloemfontein
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The Cheetahs sprung a 27-21 upset over the Brumbies in Bloemfontein thanks to 22 points from fly-half Johan Goosen.
Goosen scored a try and added 17 points from the boot, including an impressive drop-goal from inside his own half at the death to clinch the win.
All the early momentum went the way of the home side, with Goosen knocking over a penalty after only three minutes.
Indiscipline was crippling the Brumbies and they paid the price with the departure of second row Scott Fardy to the bin, Goosen's third penalty giving the Cheetahs a 9-0 lead before the end of the first quarter.
Christian Lealiifano couldn't find his range at altitude, missing two penalties, leaving scrum-half Nic White to take over the kicking duties and rack up the Brumbies first points with a strike from halfway.
It gave his side a noticeable lift as they began to win back key territory, before White orchestrated the game's first try.
The Wallaby threaded through a perfect grubber behind the defence and Robbie Coleman lapped it up for his latest try of the season, cutting the score to 9-8 in the process.
When White added another long penalty before the break as the Cheetahs struggled at the scrum, it looked set to go the Australian side's way.
But the Cheetahs had other ideas. Heinrich Brüssow was having an outstanding game and his break resulted in the Cheetahs' first try, Shaun Venter flinging out a pass to Willie Le Roux in space for the Springbok to go over.
With the Brumbies still reeling the Cheetahs struck again. Elgar Watts launched a perfect cross-field kick for Goosen of all people to rise above Coleman and then score in the far corner. 21-11 in a matter of minutes.
White's latest penalty reduced the deficit to ten but the Cheetahs were in control - odd considering this was a contest between the bottom-placed side and the Australian Conference leaders.
The attitude though of the Brumbies is what has made them one of the better teams in Super Rugby over the last two season, and they never gave in.
Rumbling a maul towards the Cheetahs line yielded a try for Stephen Moore, with White's conversion bringing them within three points of the lead.
Time though was against them. That and the monster boot of Goosen, who landed an astonishing drop goal from within his own half, the ball just sneaking over the crossbar. It was a fitting finish to a fine win for Naka Drotske's men.
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|Friday 13th February|
|06:35||Crusaders vs Melbourne Rebels|
|08:40||Brumbies vs Reds|
|17:10||Lions vs Hurricanes|
|Saturday 14th February|
|06:35||Blues vs Chiefs|
|15:05||Sharks vs Cheetahs|
|17:05||Bulls vs Stormers|
|Sunday 15th February|
|06:05||Waratahs vs Western Force|
|Friday 20th February|
|06:35||Chiefs vs Brumbies|
|08:40||Melbourne Rebels vs Waratahs|
|17:10||Bulls vs Hurricanes|
|Saturday 21st February|
|06:35||Highlanders vs Crusaders|
|08:40||Reds vs Western Force|
|15:05||Stormers vs Blues|
|17:10||Sharks vs Lions|
|Friday 27th February|
|06:35||Highlanders vs Reds|
|11:00||Western Force vs Hurricanes|
|17:10||Cheetahs vs Blues|
|Saturday 28th February|
|06:35||Chiefs vs Crusaders|
|08:40||Melbourne Rebels vs Brumbies|
|15:05||Bulls vs Sharks|
|17:10||Lions vs Stormers|
|Friday 6th March|
|06:35||Chiefs vs Highlanders|
|08:40||Brumbies vs Western Force|
|Saturday 7th March|
|06:35||Blues vs Lions|
|08:40||Reds vs Waratahs|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com