Before I get stuck in I just want to say thanks to www.sharksworld.co.za and WPRugby for making this happen.
Ok so after abandoning plans off tossing a certain journo over the balcony GF and I took our seats, while I fumbled around with some paper and a pen trying to appear literate BF tried to make a quick dash onto the field to get a better glimpse of the WP dancers, he ,mumbled something about going clubbing later and needing a few moves.
So after sitting down once again we prepared ourselves for the carnage that we all expected to take place. The Sharks laden with experience and settle combinations vs WP who gave up the good stuff to the national cause and who on top off that were affected by injuries. The ref blew the whistle to start the game and a few seconds later, Big Fishs favourite hooker started the beginning of a long evening for WP by going over in the corner off of a Sharks lineout that WP managed to steal(the mind boggles).
After that though it appeared as if the WP youngsters had forgotten to read the script and decided that they were going to make a game of it and take it to the banana boys. When it came time for the first scrum I nervously scanned the perimeter to see how for the ER24 okes were from the action because I thought that besides each backline player giving up about 10kgs to the Sharkies the scrums were going to be the area where things got messy, the ref called the engaged, they players did , WP scrum held firm and I thought someone had thrown LSD into my coffee.
The backline looked good at times as well with some enterprising play/moves and players attacking any space available to them which to me was so smart considering the size factor, because of this they often found themselves in Sharks territory and even had Wylie Human cross the chalk only to be called back for a forward pass in the movement.
Tonderai Chavanga made a few telling and impressive tackles which was rather unexpected from the skinny guy.
After just more than half an hour it looked like the heart that the WP boykies had was starting to soften and the started committing a fatal error and that was running into players, somehow managing to actually finding one specific Sharks player each time, that player being the cyborg that is Jean Deysel. Those last few minutes in the first half must have been hell as whenever contact was made this young juggernaut was around to knock the stuffing out of players, I managed to zone out of WP supporter mode for long enough to actually enjoy watching that guys do his thing, he is really an impressive specimen.
The second half kicked off and Bobes broke beautifully but looked for contact instead of space, he found it got turned and lost the ball, Stefan cleared it, 2 WP players embarrassed themselves and gifted the Sharks a try.
This was going to be the theme for the rest of the half as some of the guys really did try their best but the Sharks experience and class just outshone them every time.
Joe Peterson is not a CC flyhalf, not by a long shot, I don’t recall him do anything except just chuck the ball on everytime he received it and getting owned by Shark in the 1st half(can’t remember who it was)
At the press conference Allistair Coetzee spoke at length about the game and the season so far and the games coming up, I feel he was very honest with what he said and Fish was right in saying that journos really do have their own agenda and what you read in the papers are sometimes so far from what the coach said or was getting at that you wonder if they actually just have one brandy too many and make up their own stuff when they get home.
He also let on that the S14 is the premier competition from whichever way you look at it and preparation will be built around that, the S14 first and the Currie Cup an almost distant afterthought(in the eyes of the Big Brass, not the coaches and players) but that every team he puts onto a field is the one he fields is best for the task at hand, and will never put out a team with the view of losing the game.
Without a Dictaphone I can’t recall all that was said but I know that after hearing him have his say I did soften my opinion on him in a big way.
To close I just want to add that Bobo is really a top oke , to see the way he speaks and interacts with folk really impressed me to know end, even when leaving the stadium, he greeted , chatted and posed for a pic with everyone that approached. That’s really cool.
Till next time