KSA Shark ©

Why Sharks are a good bet


Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :In the news, Sharks, Stormers, Super 14 on 14 May 2008 at 09:00

There seems to be a growing perception, particularly in Durban, that the Sharks may be peaking at just the right time, and they should not be written off to go one better than last year by winning the Vodacom Super 14 trophy.

Whereas up until a week ago it was the Vodacom Stormers who appeared the best South African bet for the Super 14, it is now becoming clear that the Cape franchise’s high tackle count and the injuries to Schalk Burger, Tonderai Chavhanga and particularly JD Moller could count heavily against them if they did get as far as the playoffs.

Gavin Rich writes for Superrugby that the Stormers are still in a better position than the Sharks to grab a semifinal spot, because they have a better points difference (nine) than the Sharks do, which will mean that a Stormers win over the Lions on Saturday will leave the Durbanites needing to score whatever points the Stormers win by plus nine in their match against the Chiefs.

But if the Sharks do get through, they may be in the opposite position to the Stormers in that whereas the Cape team have given it all and maybe raised their game over the past two months, and could be hard pressed to do it again in a semifinal, the Sharks have tended to underperform.

At least that was the case until the past two weeks, when they were unlucky to lose to the Crusaders and then thumped the Cheetahs with a bonus point.

In that latter match they at last started to put their phases together on attack and started to look the potent team that they are on paper. The management may be the key to getting it right, for in some areas, such as loose-forward, they appear to have seen the light when it comes to the make-up of combinations.

The two fetcher combination of Jacques Botes and Keegan Daniel that played together for most of the early part of the competition was too small. Now that the likes of AJ Venter and Jean Deysel are playing at No 7 flank, the Sharks back row has a much better balance to it.

These factors have contributed to a turn-around in the Sharks statistics in their matches which John Plumtree, the Sharks assistant coach and soon to be head coach when Dick Muir moves to the Springboks, has told reporters in Durban could be indicative that his team are about to finish the season in style.

“In our previous two matches against the Crusaders and Cheetahs we made fewer tackles than our opponents, a major contrast to when we lost on tour,” said Plumtree.

“Against the Brumbies and Waratahs we made 50 to 60 tackles more than our opponents. We are never going to win a championship like that.”

Of course, in a round-about way, and without intending it, Plumtree is writing off the chances of the Stormers, who have built their season around a quite outstanding defensive effort. The problem with that is that defence takes a lot more out of a player and a team than attacking, and this aspect may explain why the Stormers appear to have faded so dramatically in the second half of the games in the home phase.

It is a vicious circle in that being forced to defend in the second half one week almost sets up the following week for the same cycle. Sooner or later this sequence is going to catch up with the Stormers, and if it is not in Johannesburg this week, it could well be the case that they are too fatigued to properly contest a semifinal a week later.

The Sharks, by contrast, are in some senses now only starting their season.



26 Comments

  • The two fetcher combination of Jacques Botes and Keegan Daniel that played together for most of the early part of the competition was too small. Now that the likes of AJ Venter and Jean Deysel are playing at No 7 flank, the Sharks back row has a much better balance to it.

    I am now one confused puppy…

  • Comment 1, posted at 14.05.08 09:10:24 by robdylan (Sharks Forever!) Reply
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  • @robdylan (Sharks Forever!) (Comment 1) :

    ditto… :cool:

  • Comment 2, posted at 14.05.08 09:22:23 by I'ce (TKMITFM) Reply
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  • @robdylan (Sharks Forever!) (Comment 1) :

    Translation… “other than the odd fluke try… Keegan is too small too be consistently competitive in the Super 14 engine room… particularly when played in tandem with Botes…”

  • Comment 3, posted at 14.05.08 09:29:34 by bryce_in_oz Reply

    bryce_in_ozCurrie Cup player
     
  • Brycie, You are in a stirring mood, aren’t you??? :twisted:

  • Comment 4, posted at 14.05.08 09:42:53 by I'ce (TKMITFM) Reply
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  • I must say, as much as I love Keegan, he hasn’t done much since those 2 “Man of the Match” awards. The new rules have suited him – but he needs to step up to the plate now – we need something special from him again.

    Jacques was awesome on Saturday – as was Odwa. I didn’t see – who got Man of the Match?

  • Comment 5, posted at 14.05.08 09:44:00 by Nessa Reply

    NessaCurrie Cup player
     
  • @bryce_in_oz (Comment 3) : But it worked so well against the Blues… was it a flash in the pan?

  • Comment 6, posted at 14.05.08 09:44:01 by robdylan (Sharks Forever!) Reply
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  • @Nessa (Comment 5) : JB got it

  • Comment 7, posted at 14.05.08 09:45:01 by robdylan (Sharks Forever!) Reply
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  • well, JB with a little (lot of) help from JC :)

  • Comment 8, posted at 14.05.08 09:45:36 by robdylan (Sharks Forever!) Reply
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  • @I’ce (TKMITFM) (Comment 4) : The sun rises every morning

  • Comment 9, posted at 14.05.08 09:46:05 by robdylan (Sharks Forever!) Reply
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  • @robdylan (Sharks Forever!) (Comment 7) :

    I think it was well deserved though. What a boytjie!!!

  • Comment 10, posted at 14.05.08 09:47:16 by Nessa Reply

    NessaCurrie Cup player
     
  • JB with help from JC :lol:

    Guess we know who put him in the right places …at the right time…

  • Comment 11, posted at 14.05.08 09:49:04 by blackshark N.R.N.S! Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!Super Rugby player
     
  • Awesome player, fearless attitude… from what I hear awesome bloke… but if we are not on the front foot and on attack… he’s always going to struggle and consequently Botes too…

  • Comment 12, posted at 14.05.08 09:50:12 by bryce_in_oz Reply

    bryce_in_ozCurrie Cup player
     
  • Jacques, Ness..

  • Comment 13, posted at 14.05.08 09:53:00 by I'ce (TKMITFM) Reply
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  • @I’ce (TKMITFM) (Comment 4) :

    Somewhat… :wink:

  • Comment 14, posted at 14.05.08 09:56:15 by bryce_in_oz Reply

    bryce_in_ozCurrie Cup player
     
  • Oh, Brycie!!! My name is passionate pink!! :oops: :oops:

    Vinnie is gonna have a heart attack! :wink:

  • Comment 15, posted at 14.05.08 10:01:39 by I'ce (TKMITFM) Reply
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  • it looks like the centre pairing will be the same as last week.
    dunno how brad is left out.
    game 1 to 9 (brad played we won)
    game 10 brumbies(18-3 to sharks when brad goes off we lose)
    game 11 waratahs (brad injured we are destroyed)
    game 12 crusaders(we lose)
    game 13 cheetahs who are the worst team in comp(19-14 when brad comes on we win 33-14)

    surely people this says something i dunno why dick muir doesnt just play steyn 13 or 15

  • Comment 16, posted at 14.05.08 11:18:25 by jjj1 Reply

    Academy recruit
     
  • @jjj1 (Comment 16) : Can I buy you a beer?

  • Comment 17, posted at 14.05.08 11:26:51 by robdylan (Sharks Forever!) Reply
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  • ha ha just wanted my point across put it on sharks other website , brad cant be happy about this ,its also ruined his chance of bok selection ,he is not the only one though

  • Comment 18, posted at 14.05.08 11:43:41 by jjj1 Reply

    Academy recruit
     
  • @jjj1 (Comment 18) : How do you know he wont be picked this week? Do you have some inside info?

  • Comment 19, posted at 14.05.08 11:47:44 by robdylan (Sharks Forever!) Reply
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  • just reading into websites and dick on the radio saying that if frans(most overrated player in history) is fit he will be at 12

  • Comment 20, posted at 14.05.08 11:56:27 by jjj1 Reply

    Academy recruit
     
  • Please…not another member of the Brad fan club… :roll:

    unless it’s Angelina Jolie… :mrgreen:

  • Comment 21, posted at 14.05.08 11:58:46 by blackshark N.R.N.S! Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!Super Rugby player
     
  • @blackshark N.R.N.S! (Comment 21) : Must say, I thought Brad did superbly coming on last weekend. I’ve been worried that he might not be dynamic enough in the impact role, but he certainly proved me wrong.

  • Comment 22, posted at 14.05.08 12:00:32 by robdylan (Sharks Forever!) Reply
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  • He did very well of the bench rob…

    If we had to let go of one of our centres (to the Stormers) :lol: …who would you sacrifice?

  • Comment 23, posted at 14.05.08 12:39:33 by blackshark N.R.N.S! Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!Super Rugby player
     
  • it might actually happen that the stormers dont get a bp and we do

  • Comment 24, posted at 14.05.08 16:21:00 by jarsonx Reply
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  • @jjj1 (Comment 20) :

    We do not respond to people without avatars….

    This is the official 1 response allowed on behalf of Sharksworld…

  • Comment 25, posted at 14.05.08 16:42:23 by Hmmm Reply

    HmmmSuper Rugby player
     
  • @jarsonx (Comment 24) :

    Or that the stormers win :!: :?: :?: :!:

  • Comment 26, posted at 14.05.08 16:43:49 by Hmmm Reply

    HmmmSuper Rugby player
     

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