Man, but the Sharks XV underlined their pedigree in a big way this weekend, showing true ruthlessness in utterly SMASHING the hapless Elephants by 68 points to 6. Chief destroyer was blindside flanker Mike Rhodes, who scored three tries.
Rhodes was well supported by his fellow loosies, though, with number 8 Warren Whiteley scoring a brace and opensider Justin Downey also dotting down. Ten tries were scored in total, with Craig Burden, Guy Cronjé (the flyhalf) and Lwazi Mvovo also scoring. The latter scored two, to reclaim join top spot on the competition try-scoring table (6 tries in 6 games).
Ross Cronjé (the scrummie) succeeded with 7 conversions, missing only 1. What is it with goal-kicking scrumhalves in Durban?
The result places the Sharks XV firmly and unassailably on top of the South Section log, with 27 log point from a maximum of 30. They are the only team in the competition to win all six of their league games and now have a few weeks off to prepare for a quarter final, in Durban, against the fourth-placed team in the North Section – at this stage, likely to be either the Pumas or the Lions.
From the perspective of the wider Sharks franchise, though, the success of this team has been huge. Not only to we have a very real shot at winning the Vodacom Cup this year, which will look very nice alongside the Currie Cup and Super 14 trophies, but we are building the nucleus of a strong team, from which the next generation of Currie Cup stars will emerge. We have already seen Monty Dumond, Charl McLeod and Chris Jordaan bring their winning Sharks XV momentum to slot seamlessly into the Sharks Super 14 side. It’s good to know that, when our team is decimated by Bok call-ups later in the year, we have the Rhodes’s, Downeys, Cronjés and Mvovos of the world ready to step up and keep the side going.
Man, but it’s great to be a Shark today.Tweet