The teams finished the pool stages level on 26 points, which resulted in their log positions being determined by the best points’ difference in the matches contested between them.
This resulted in the Cheetahs finishing in third place and the Lions in fourth place respectively, despite the Johannesburg team boasting a better points difference overall than the Cheetahs.
The Cheetahs won both matches played between the two teams in the round-robin phase.
In the semi-finals next weekend, log-leaders Western Province will host the Golden Lions in Cape Town and the Sharks will meet the Cheetahs in Durban.
In an action-packed day of rugby, Western Province edged the Sharks 17-13 at Kings Park, the Cheetahs defeated the Blue Bulls 22-7 at the Free State Stadium and the Golden Lions beat Griquas 35-28 at Ellis Park.
Currie Cup semi-final line-ups:
Saturday, October 19
WP v Golden Lions, Cape Town (14:30).
Sharks v Free State Cheetahs, Durban (17:00).