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Free State Cheetahs vs Western Province - Cheetahs set to secure home semi final with win

Away day struggles to continue for Western Province in Currie Cup
Free State Cheetahs vs Western Province
Free State Cheetahs are favourites to beat Western Province and secure a home semi final (Getty Images)

Free State Cheetahs vs Western Province Preview, Predictions & Betting Tips

The Free State Cheetahs will look to secure a home semi final birth at the Free State Stadium against Western Province as the 2019 Currie Cup round robin stage comes to a close. Both sides are desperate for victory but the hosts are tipped to come out on top.

Free State Cheetahs Form & Team News

The Free State Cheetahs started the season with two great results but then faltered for a couple of weeks against the Golden Lions and Sharks. A return to form last week saw them beat the Pumas 43-37 at the Mbombela Stadium.

Head coach Franco Smith will be concerned about the defensive display last week and will know they need to tighten up against Western Province. A win will secure the Free State Cheetahs a home semi final but defeat, and other results going against them, could see them miss out on the playoffs.

Louis Fouche was in magnificent form against the Pumas scoring 21 individual points while Ruan Pienaar marked his starting debut with a try.

The Free State Cheetahs may have suffered two defeats to the Sharks and Golden Lions but they were undeniably the better side on both occasions. Huge mistakes cost them on both occasions but they have yet to be outplayed this season.

Being at home in this crunch game gives the Free State Cheetahs the edge in my opinion so I am backing them to win outright at 1.71. For my value bet I will place a small layout on the hosts to win in the half time/full time market at 2.33.

Free State Cheetahs vs Western Province Bloemfontein
The Free State Cheetahs have not lost to Western Province at the Free State Stadium in their last two visits (Getty Images)

Western Province Form & Team News

Last week Western Province suffered a 27-23 loss at Tafel Lager Park to Griquas. It was a disappointing showing from the Cape Town-based outfit which has put their semi final position in jeopardy. Nothing short of a win will be enough to regain that semi final birth this weekend.

Fortunately Western Province can call on a few stalwarts for this crucial clash. Scarra Ntubeni and Wilco Louw return from international duty to give the front-row more power while Dillyn Lleyds starts at full-back following his return.

Damian Willemse gets his chance to impress at fly-half after coming off the bench last weekend. He will be a danger going by the performance he put in against the Griquas.

Western Province can be backed against the odds at 2.24 but without a win from their previous two away games I can’t see them turning it on in Bloemfontein. A draw will pay 20.75.

Free State Cheetahs vs Western Province Head to Head

The Free State Cheetahs have won three of their last five encounters with Western Province. The last two encounters have been won by Western Province (2017 & 2018) but the Bloemfontein-based outfit didn’t have their best team playing due to Pro 14 commitments.

Their last encounter ended in a dominant 32-0 win for Western Province in 2018 at Newlands. 

Free State Cheetahs vs Western Province Match Up

The Free State Cheetahs are a very balanced outfit that plays an exciting brand of rugby while Louis Fouche has been in tremendous kicking from the tee. Ruan Pienaar is another to watch whether he starts again or comes from the bench.

Western Province have been inconsistent this season but they welcome back three players from international duty. Young fly-half sensation Damian Willemse is back from injury at starts after last week’s impressive showing off the bench.

Damian Willemse
Damian Willemse returns to the Western Province line-up after injury and will need to provide an attacking spark (Getty Images)

Free State Cheetahs vs Western Province Key Statistics

  • Free State Cheetahs are 2nd on the Currie Cup table.
  • Free State Cheetahs have won 3 of their 5 matches in the Currie Cup.
  • Western Province have lost 2 from 2 away games in the Currie Cup.


I expect the Free State Cheetahs to win at home in a tight affair. Western Province have yet to win away from home so the value lies with the Cheetahs at 1.79. The half time/full time market offers great value with the Cheetahs tipped at 2.33.

Best Bet: Cheetahs Win @1.79 at betway - 4 Units
Value Bet: Cheetahs HT/FT @2.33 at betway - 1 Unit

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Post bet analysis

Western Province had a 33-12 lead just after half time and both by tips looked like losing ones. Fortunately the hosts pulled off an incredible comeback to ensure my best bet came through. Another slow start for the Cheetahs is enough to get me off the half time/full time market for them.
24 Aug 2019

Free State Cheetahs v Western Province

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