The Cheetahs won five consecutive Super Rugby matches for the first time when they snatched a dramatic 26-24 victory over the Stormers in a frenetic South African derby.
A multi-phase post-siren attack by the home team that started in their half was rewarded when they were awarded a 35-metre penalty close to the touchline at Free State Stadium.
Up stepped five-eighth Burton Francis, elevated to the first team recently after star Johan Goosen sustained a serious injury during training, and he calmly slotted the ball between the posts.
Francis kicked three penalties, a drop goal and the conversions of tries by centre Robert Ebersohn and replacement halfback Sarel Pretorius as the Cheetahs made history in mild, South African autumn conditions.
Stormers fullback Joe Pietersen was successful with four penalties and one conversion and centre Juan de Jongh bagged a brace of tries for the 2012 semi-finalists.
The Cheetahs, used to occasional victories in the southern hemisphere championship and a bottom-half position throughout the season, are sixth on the combined standings and second in the South African conference.