PRO 14 RUGBY
Cheetahs stripped of experience
Many of their stars have packed for greener pastures
Coach Franco Smith admits his team has been stripped of valuable experience and they will have to punch above their weight when their Pro14 campaign kicks off this weekend. His team performed admirably in their maiden appearance in the competition last season‚ but since then many of their stars have packed for greener pastures. "Of the 23 that played in the Currie Cup final in 2016 we have five left. That leaves us with a bit of a challenge‚" Smith sighed. Despite their late inclusion a year ago‚ he reflected on the team’s preparation then. "We had players who were in form. Up to that point we had won 17 Currie Cup games in a row. Over a period of three years we had built a lot of experience. We had players who had particular qualities to do a job. "Now we have a lot of players who have not played in this competition before. Because we were under pressure to make the playoffs a lot of the players who have to play now did not play last season. The players we’ve lost have taken that e...