The DHL Stormers secured their fifth consecutive victory of the season when they beat the Toyota Cheetahs 53-10 at DHL Newlands on Saturday.
The DHL Stormers outscored the visitors by eight tries to one in a scintillating display that saw them consolidate their comfortable lead at the top of Africa Conference One.
Both teams made a positive start to the game and looked full of running in the early exchanges. The DHL Stormers were first to strike through a penalty from flyhalf Rob du Preez.
The home side were tested on defence and stood up well, although they did lose scrumhalf Jano Vermaak who had to be helped from the field with a concussion.
It was not long before the DHL Stormers crossed for the first try, with wing Dillyn Leyds finishing in the corner to make it 8-0 after 20 minutes.
The Toyota Cheetahs got on the scoreboard with a penalty from their flyhalf Fred Zeilinga, but the DHL Stormers responded with their second try as No.8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe was put over by an inside ball from fullback SP Marais who had burst into the 22.
The hosts kept the pressure on and after coming close a few times they managed to score a third try as Leyds scrambled his way over in the corner to give them a 22-3 advantage at the half-time break.
Inside centre Dan du Plessis got over for the fourth try early in the second half, but the Toyota Cheetahs hit back with a try of their own from flank Paul Schoeman to reduce the deficit to 29-10.
Du Preez produced a moment of brilliance for the #DHLStormers’ fifth try as he collected his own chip kick and rounded the defence to extend the lead to 34-10 with 25 minutes left.
They were not done there as some hard work from the DHL Stormers forwards paid off when captain Siya Kolisi powered his way over from close range for their sixth try.
The next try came courtesy of some great offloads in the tackle from EW Viljoen and SP Marais to put Notshe over for his second five-pointer.
There was time for one more as Notshe showed great strength to claim his hat-trick and seal an emphatic victory.
For DHL Stormers:
Tries: Leyds 2, Notshe 3, Du Plessis, Du Preez, Kolisi
Con: Du Preez 4, Coleman
Pen: Du Preez
For Toyota Cheetahs:
DHL Stormers: 15 SP Marais, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 EW Viljoen, 12 Dan du Plessis, 11 Dillyn Leyds, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 7 Siya Kolisi (captain), 6 Cobus Wiese, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Eben Etzebeth (vice captain), 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Replacements: 16 Ramone Samuels, 17 Caylib Oosthuizen, 18 Oli Kebble, 19 Chris van Zyl, 20 Nizaam Carr, 21 Dewaldt Duvenage, 22 Kurt Coleman, 23 Dan Kriel.
Toyota Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Nico Lee, 13 Francois Venter, 12 Niel Marais, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Shaun Venter, 8 Henco Venter, 7 Oupa Mohoje, 6 Paul Schoeman, 5 Francois Uys, 4 Armandt Koster, 3 Tom Botha, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld, 1 Charles Marais.
Replacements: 16 Elandré Huggett, 17 Ox Nche, 18 Johan Coetzee, 19 Carl Wegner, 20 Niell Jordaan, 21 Tian Meyer, 22 Luther Obi, 23 Clinton Swart.