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Cardiff Blues must be on the money says Anscombe

28th September 2018

Gareth Anscombe insists his side must be on the money when they welcome Toyota Cheetahs to the Cardiff Arms Park on Friday (KO 7.35pm)

The South African outfit head into the PRO14 clash on the back of an entertaining 39-all draw against Ulster in Bloemfontein last week.

The outside half is keen to highlight the important of tonight’s clash and has warned his side of the dangers that Cheetahs possess across the field.

“This is another vital game for us because of the way we started. We have to go out to win tomorrow against a Cheetahs side that really should’ve had the win on the weekend,” said the Welsh international.

“They throw the ball around, they play a pretty free-spirited game and I’m sure the crowd will enjoy that. But they’ve got a lot of threats out wide, and some big ball carriers in the middle.

“They present a big challenge and if we’re inaccurate in the way we carry the ball and look after it, then they can certainly hurt us on the turnover.

“They’ll be a slightly different challenge from Munster, but for us it’s about picking up from last week and improving. There are still improvements to be made.

“If we want to be at the right end of the table, these are the games you have to deliver on as well.

“It’s hard to get a real feel for them at the moment because they’ve essentially got two teams competing as they’re also involved in the Currie Cup and they’ve had quite a few changes.

“Whether they’re quite as strong as last year, I guess we’ll find out, but they’re certainly still playing a pretty open and expansive game of rugby like they did last year.

“They like to play at high tempo, particularly at home, on the high veldt, and running teams off their feet. It will be slightly different tomorrow, but we’re hoping the weather will be nice and both teams will look to throw the ball around.

“But like I said, they’ve got a few big ball carriers up-front and plenty of pace out wide. Any team that has that combination can always hurt you. It’s important that we’re accurate on both sides of the ball.”

Anscombe starred in last week’s bonus point victory over Munster - maintaining a 100 per cent record for goal-kicking and providing an assist for Willis Halaholo’s second half try.

The former Super Rugby winner was delighted to seal Cardiff Blues’ first win of the campaign but insists they must maintain that standard of rugby throughout the campaign.

Anscombe said: “It was pretty pleasing to get a satisfying performance and it was a much needed win to start our campaign.

“The manner of the victory was also pleasing. We’d been searching to take another step in the way we’re playing, and I thought we did that.

“From a personal point of view it was great to kick a few goals and get a few nice touches. My role is to support Willis when he’s on fire.

“When he’s in a mood like that you just have to give him the ball and try to get him on the front foot as much as possible

“I thought the pack gave us a really good platform and really set the tone for us. Big Nick was charging around and big George Earle gave it a good go as well.

“We put a bit of pressure on them to front up for us and I thought they did that well.

“Our backs showed what we can do when we get some front-foot ball so hopefully we can build on that as a team and go from strength-to-strength.

“What we touched on as a team was that we tend to perform well when our backs are against the wall, and sometimes when it’s not, we let our standards slip.”

#PackCAP and play your part once again as Cardiff Blues go toe-to-toe against South African side, Toyota Cheetahs.