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Toyota Cheetahs’ maiden EPCR Challenge Cup adventure continues as they head to RC Toulon in the Round of 16 on Saturday.
The South African outfit face the toughest assignment yet of their debut EPCR campaign as they take on the three-time Heineken Champions Cup winners and four-time Challenge Cup finalists at the Stade Félix Mayol.
Toyota Cheetahs advanced from Pool B after picking up two wins from four games to finish sixth, beating Section Paloise home and away, including a dramatic 9-6 victory in Round 4 to secure their progression.
Meanwhile, Toulon enjoyed an impressive Pool A campaign as they recorded four wins from four, defeating Zebre Parma and Bath Rugby both home and away to qualify as the top-seeded team.
The game kicks off at 12:30 (UK & Irish time) and is available to watch on France TV, beIN SPORTS, SuperSport, Viaplay-Premier Sports and FloRugby.
𝔾𝔸𝕄𝔼 𝕎𝔼𝔼𝕂 👊
— EPCR Challenge Cup (@ChallengeCup_) March 27, 2023
Toyota Cheetahs head coach Hawies Fourie: “Now we are [in the Round of 16] and we are not satisfied with just that. We want to go one further and we all know it’s going to be really difficult. They are a quality team with a lot of depth, but we are better prepared than we were in December and January.”
- In Round 4, Cheslin Kolbe and Duncan Paia’aua beat more defenders than any other players: nine and six respectively. Toulon have beaten the most defenders in the league (107).
- Dan Biggar has made the most metres from penalty kicks to touch in the competition (822).
- Toulon have won more scrum penalties on their own feed than any other team (16).
- Siya Masuku conceded as many turnovers as any other player in the last round (five). However, he also made the most kicks in play (16) and kick metres (612).
- Friedle Olivier was the joint-top tackler of Round 4 (18). He has also made the most carries (44) and contact metres (57) overall.
- Jeandré Rudolph won six turnovers in Round 4 – the highest individual total in a match in the competition so far.
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Toyota Cheetahs’ maiden EPCR campaign came to an end on Saturday as they went down 36-21 at RC Toulon in the EPCR Challenge Cup Round of 16.
Three-time Heineken Champions Cup winners and four-time Challenge Cup finalists Toulon were on the front foot from the off at the Stade Félix Mayol as they booked their place in the quarter-finals.
Tries from Thomas Salles, Teddy Baubigny and Aymeric Luc – the first and third converted by Salles – put the hosts in front at the break, assisted by Toyota Cheetahs going down to 14 men when Rynier Bernardo was shown a yellow card.
— EPCR Challenge Cup (@ChallengeCup_) April 1, 2023
Marko Janse van Rensburg got one back for Toyota Cheetahs two minutes into the second half, converted by Ruan Pienaar.
But Facundo Isa restored Toulon’s advantage, and Jiuta Wainiqolo extended it with a brace, along with another conversion from Salle.
Toyota Cheetahs threatened a recovery when Cohen Jasper crossed on 58 minutes, but it was too little too late when Bernardo atoned for his sin bin spell by going over with eight minutes to go.