Western Province coach Allister Coetzee, who bemoaned the inexperience that cost his side dearly as the Sharks ran out 32-10 winners in their Currie Cup encounter at Newlands last Friday, has revealed that Joe Pietersen will continue in the No.10 jersey.
Rugby 365 reports that Pietersen, a fullback or wing, made his Currie Cup debut in the No.10 channel – when he came up against the Sharks’ veteran French international Frédérick Michalak.
However, despite his obvious lack of experience in this position, De Villiers says he will persist with the youngster as his pivot.
Coetzee felt that the final scoreline was not a true reflection of the match between Province and the Sharks.
“I must say the Sharks were clinical and their experience showed in the match,” said Coetzee.
“The score, however, was not a true reflection of the way the game went.
“Despite the defeat, there were positives, one of which was the splendid debut [in a run-on XV] by Nick Koster, he was outstanding.”
Once again WP surrendered an early soft try and Coetzee said it was bound to happen. The Sharks scored after only 40 seconds through Skipper Badenhorst after WP failed to gather a line-out deflection.
“With so many youngsters in the mix, mistakes are bound to happen and again we gave away a soft, early try. It’s something that we’ve been aware of because it’s happened before.
“I was pleased with Joe Pietersen at flyhalf, and I’m forced to persevere with him. He took a heavy knock which forced him to leave the field.”
At one stage in the second half, WP fielded several Under-21 players who had entered the fray from the replacements’ bench in the second half.
“I was very pleased with the way the youngsters played, and I was pleased with the physicality we showed,” said Coetzee.
“Physically we stood up to them, although many of their players were much bigger than ours.”
WP captain Gcobani Bobo said he was impressed with his side’s display, despite the defeat.
“I’m happy that the younger guys are kicking on, and keeping the traditions of WP rugby alive.”
John Plumtree, the Sharks coach, said WP were “impressive” but his side finished well.
“WP were playing a type of game that we really could not crack,” said Plumtree.
“We only gained the upper hand in the last 20 minutes of the match.
“I’m sure that WP will feel that the scoreline did not do them justice.
“It must be hard for Allister [Coetzee, and WP] because the expectations are high but he has to work without so many of his Springboks.”Tweet