Cape Town - A try from Sergeal Petersen after the hooter gave the Free State Cheetahs a dramatic 30-24 win over the Golden Lions in Bloemfontein on Saturday.
It looked like the Lions were heading for just their second win of the Currie Cup season, but a great run and step from Petersen kept the visitors bottom of the table as they continue their fresh start under Swys de Bruin,
The Cheetahs, meanwhile, returned to the top of the log.
The sides had gone into the break with the Cheetahs 13-7 ahead after Andries Ferreira for the Lions and then Gerhard Olivier for the hosts had scored tries.
The visitors then took a big step towards a much-needed victory with two quick-fire tries from Hacjivah Dayimani and then Fabian Booysen that put them ahead.
Cheetahs flyhalf Robbie Petzer kept his side in the game with his third penalty of the night before Rosko Specman's try gave them a 23-21 lead heading into the final few minutes.
Then, with just four minutes left on the clock, the Lions were awarded a kickable penalty that fullback Jaco van der Walt made no mistake with.
24-23 up, the Lions were looking to just hold on, but the Cheetahs launched an attack after the hooter to get the win.
Free State Cheetahs 30 (13)
Tries: Gerhard Olivier, Rosko Specman, Sergeal Petersen
Conversions: Robbie Petzer (2)
Penalties: Petzer (3)
Golden Lions 24 (7)
Tries: Andries Ferreira, Hacjivah Dayimani, Fabian Booysen
Conversions: Jaco van der Walt (3)
Free State Cheetahs
15 Sergeal Petersen, 14 Rosko Specman, 13 William Small Smith, 12 Ali Mgijima, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Robbie Petzer, 9 Tian Meyer, 8 Niell Jordaan (captain), 7 Gerhard Olivier, 6 Paul Schoeman, 5 Reniel Hugo, 4 Justin Basson, 3 Aranos Coetzee, 2 Jacques du Toit, 1 Charles Marais
Substitutes: 16 Retshegofaditswe Nche, 17 Torsten van Jaarsveld, 18 Rynier Bernardo, 19 Jasper Wiese, 20 Zee Mkhabela, 21 Rayno Benjamin, 22 Cecil Afrika
15 Jaco van der Walt, 14 Sylvian Mahuza, 13 Harold Vorster, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Anthony Volmink, 10 Ashlon Davids, 9 Marco Jansen van Vuren, 8 Fabian Booysen, 7 Cyle Brink, 6 James Venter, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Jacques van Rooyen, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Corne Fourie
Substitutes: 16 Pieter Jansen, 17 Jacobie Adriaanse, 18 Rhyno Herbst, 19 Hacjivah Dayimani, 20 Bradley Thain, 21 Stokkies Hanekom, 22 Aphiwe Dyantyi