Posted on Thursday, 04 Mar 2019
The Toyota Cheetahs’ hope of reaching the Guinness PRO14 playoffs was reduced to a mathematical chance this weekend after the Free State team suffered their third defeat in a row on tour, against defending champions, Leinster, in Dublin on Friday.
Defending champions hold off determined Toyota Cheetahs
Guinness PRO14 title contenders and the top side in the competition this season, Leinster, held off a determined Toyota Cheetahs outfit in Dublin on Friday for a 19-7 victory, which marked their 15th win in 17 matches.
The visitors found themselves under pressure early on as Ox Nche was yellow-carded in the ninth minute, and Leinster capitalised on this immediately to score their first of three tries.
Despite being a player down, the visitors worked their way onto the scoreboard in the 14th minute as speedster Rabz Maxwane showed his class to gather a kick-through from a loose ball at pace and touched down to push the score to 7-7.
The home team finished the half strongly with their patience on attack earning them their second try 12-7 halftime lead.
The second half proved to be a hard grind as both teams tried hard to make their presence felt on attack and defended with intent, and Leinster’s third try was the only points scored. This secured them a 19-7 victory.
The defeat left the Toyota Cheetahs 11 points behind Connacht and the Cardiff Blues, who are the main contenders for the last playoff spot in Conference A, with four pool matches to go. This means they need to win all their remaining matches – some with bonus points – while hoping other teams will slip up for Franco Smith’s men to make it to the playoffs.
Leinster – Tries: Conor O’Brien, Adam Byrne, Rory O’Loughlin. Conversions: Ross Byrne (2)
Toyota Cheetahs – Try: Rabs Maxwane. Conversion: Tian Schoeman
Other Round 17 results:
Saturday, 2 March:
Connacht 46-5 Ospreys (The Sportsground, Galway)
Benetton 18-10 Edinburgh (Stadio Monigo, Treviso)
Scarlets 10-6 Munster (Parc y Scarlets, Llanelli)
Zebre 10-42 Glasgow Warriors (Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi, Parma)