KSA Shark ©

The Lions should be quaking in their boots

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :2009 Lions Tour, Bulls, Sharks, Super 14 on 17 May 2009 at 07:30
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For the sake of their mental wellbeing the British and Irish Lions had better not have caught a glimpse of last night’s blockbuster.

Their tour of SA starts in a fortnight and the sight of what South African rugby has in store for them was displayed in brutal terms by the Sharks and Bulls here yesterday.

They tore lumps out of each other and by the time the dust had settled, the Bulls marched back to Pretoria in the knowledge that they will host a Vodacom Super14 semifinal (against the Crusaders on Saturday).

Jeff Farraday writes for the Times Online that the vanquished Sharks will lament their spectacular demise in the second half of the campaign.

The Bulls though won a contest in which fortunes ebbed and flowed, but in which brutal intensity remained constant.

With a pack that stood their ground, it was up to Morne Steyn to provide the difference and his three conversions and two drop goals got the Bulls home — just.

It was amazing how these teams summoned the will and physical endeavour to go at each other in the way they did.

The Bulls won because they held their nerve and kept their shape and form when it mattered. In the face of a spirited Sharks second-half assault, packed with power and purpose, the Bulls stood firm .

Bakkies Botha was the Bulls’ agent provocateur inside the first 10 minutes, when he hit Ryan Kankowski in the face.

JP Nel, another habitual offender, used his stiff arm, only to be sanctioned by referee Craig Joubert’s outstretched arm and a 10-minute stint in the bin.

Deon Stegmann frustrated the hosts with his foraging on the ground, to the point where he, too, incurred the wrath of Joubert.

Behind their steady pack, Du Preez gave his team direction with sniping runs and the judicious use of his boot.

The Sharks opted for all-out attack and although they cannot be faulted for their effort in the second half, they will wonder how they strayed in the first.

This was never going to be a game of half-measures — the stakes were too high — and while the Sharks played with the intent which the occasion demanded, their over-eagerness bedevilled their execution.

Bristling intent was simply not going to be enough against a Bulls side that in the second half of the season acquired a rare skill — closing the deal when presented with the chance.

As steady as Stefan Terblanche was under the high ball and as inventive as he, JP Pietersen and Adi Jacobs were on the attack, the Bulls always seemed to have a little in store.

While the Sharks outscored the Bulls by four tries to three, Steyn’s boot not only kept his team in the hunt, but in the ascendancy.

His two drop goals were priceless and the Sharks will perhaps ask themselves why they spurned so many potential punts at goal.

In the other Super 14 semifinal, the Chiefs, who ended second on the log, will host the third-placed Hurricanes in Hamilton.


  • It WAS an excellent game.

    After watching this performance and feeling the way I felt after the loss just doesn’t really equate.

    There is something missing.

    Ain’t I supposed to be upset and depressed all at the same time this morning?


    To the Sharks, losing like that is NO disgrace.

    To the Bulls, congrats and bring the trophy back to SA.

    To the British & Irish Lions, be afraid, be VERY afraid.

  • Comment 1, posted at 17.05.09 07:56:23 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©Head Coach
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 1) : i feel the same, maybe we knew that making the semis was going to be tough, and i think that if we played like before we wouldnt have came close to winning. Now if we continue playing this kind of rugby, we can win the CC again

  • Comment 2, posted at 17.05.09 08:07:54 by JarsonX Reply
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  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 1) : What an advertisement for SA rugby. I reckon apart from NZ, and even they do not play like this when they play each other, there can be no other, who can put on a display like this. My only problem is we only do it to each other why can we not play like this against the Kiwis. The derby games are by far and away the toughest games. Congrats to Punter for winning Last man Standing. LET THE NEXT COMP BEGIN, bring on the Lions!!

  • Comment 3, posted at 17.05.09 08:47:09 by Whindy Reply
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  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 1) : I agree, I think the disappointment has abated. We were kak the last few weeks before this game, but you have to say the Sharks redeemed themselves massively, despite losing. Credit to the bulls, they did enough to win. Perhaps we lost sight of the main objective, or did we? 4 tries or the win. Which comes first?

  • Comment 4, posted at 17.05.09 08:58:33 by Baldrick Reply

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  • Watching the Blues-Crusaders derby in Auckland earlier, the commentator was thrilled at the crowd. 20 000. I think there were something like 5000 at the Reds game. Sharks had 47000.

    You cannot tell me that SA Rugby is in turmoil with the fans nearly as much as in Oz and NZ.

    SANZAR needs SA more than we need them, I only hope there is no “lets get the yarpies” backlash following all the nonsense that played itself out in the media recently.

    I still can’t bring myself to support the bulls, but just to show what a disadvantage SA sides have been at with the travel factor, I hope the traveling kiwi sides lose.

  • Comment 5, posted at 17.05.09 09:04:55 by Baldrick Reply

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  • @Baldrick (Comment 5) : I’m backing the Chiefs to win. So long the Cinderella side of the tournament, they deserve a shot at the big time.

  • Comment 6, posted at 17.05.09 10:05:03 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 6) : I actually would agree with you there, OK, I’m supporting the Chiefs to win. Screw the Bulls and their thug-by.

  • Comment 7, posted at 17.05.09 11:12:25 by Baldrick Reply

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  • @Baldrick (Comment 7) : thug-bee maybe best describes what I meant there.

  • Comment 8, posted at 17.05.09 11:13:11 by Baldrick Reply

    BaldrickCurrie Cup player
  • I see Bakkies Botha and RC Nel have been cited.

  • Comment 9, posted at 17.05.09 11:42:50 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©Head Coach
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 9) :
    What pisses me off is that Joubert can one week say Kockott HAS to be sent off, and then the next merely penalise Bakkies for the same open-hand smack.

    Still, I am backing the Bulls all the way.

  • Comment 10, posted at 17.05.09 11:46:40 by Big Fish Reply
    Big FishAssistant coach
  • @robdylan (Comment 6) : @Baldrick (Comment 7) : Geez guys I realise your noses are a bit out of joint, but surely SA Rugby first, GO THE BULLS. Who is to say the Chiefs will even win, they stuttered a bit against the Brumbies, and yes the Bulls have to get past the ever dangerous Crusaders, but there is no way in hell I will ever support a Kiwi side over a SA side, shame on you!!

  • Comment 11, posted at 17.05.09 12:52:54 by Whindy Reply
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  • @Baldrick (Comment 8) : Sharks did exactly the same thing when Kockott hit that Kiwi so is that not thugby as well, or is it okay when a Shark does it?

  • Comment 12, posted at 17.05.09 12:57:09 by Whindy Reply
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  • @Whindy (Comment 11) :

    Almost uncharted waters for a Sharks supporter this. We have been in the play-offs for the last two years, so we haven’t had to deal with this dilemma for a while. :wink:

    I’ll be shouting for the Bulls.

  • Comment 13, posted at 17.05.09 13:04:20 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©Head Coach
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 13) :

    And I also voted for them on the poll. :wink:

  • Comment 14, posted at 17.05.09 13:05:11 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©Head Coach
  • @Whindy (Comment 11) : it’s a matter of opinion, Whindy. I don’t support the Bulls – sorry. That’s just the way I feel. It’s kinda my democratic right to not support them, even though they are South Africans

  • Comment 15, posted at 17.05.09 13:13:45 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 15) : My sons have a similar hatred for the Bulls must be a boys high thing. I would never question your democratic rights either, I just tend towards South Africa first and always will, when it comes to sport!!

  • Comment 16, posted at 17.05.09 13:31:41 by Whindy Reply
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  • Maak die Bulle almal Bokke!! :mrgreen:

  • Comment 17, posted at 17.05.09 13:47:28 by wpw Reply
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  • @wpw (Comment 17) : Precisely, and HOPEFULLY, we will all be shouting for the Boks or are you starting to tilt towards the Lions, Rob being a resident and all!! :wink:

  • Comment 18, posted at 17.05.09 14:03:02 by Whindy Reply
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  • @Whindy (Comment 18) :

    it’s a year of change for WPW.

    He will be supporting the Lions and Man U in the future.

  • Comment 19, posted at 17.05.09 14:06:21 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©Head Coach
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 19) : At least he and I will be able to agree on something!! :grin:

  • Comment 20, posted at 17.05.09 14:09:19 by Whindy Reply
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  • @Whindy (Comment 16) : Affies boys are terrible bullies!

  • Comment 21, posted at 17.05.09 14:54:49 by fyndraai Reply
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  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 19) :
    What was that KSA Shark??
    I will always support WP, even if they get relegated to the ‘B’ section of the CC (if there was such a division)
    You Sharks supporters should know what I’m talking about. :twisted:

  • Comment 22, posted at 17.05.09 14:59:03 by wpw Reply
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  • @fyndraai (Comment 21) : :-)

  • Comment 23, posted at 17.05.09 16:40:35 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Whindy (Comment 12) : I was referring to JP Nel’s swinging arm. He’s a serial offender.

  • Comment 24, posted at 17.05.09 17:53:53 by Baldrick Reply

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  • @Whindy (Comment 11) : I don’t like the Bulls period. The Chiefs have played exciting and enterprising rugby and will go into the final as under dogs, I’ll support them.

  • Comment 25, posted at 17.05.09 17:56:53 by Baldrick Reply

    BaldrickCurrie Cup player
  • @fyndraai (Comment 21) :
    Speaking of Bullies, did you seee what Grey Bloem were up to this past weekend.

  • Comment 26, posted at 19.05.09 10:37:40 by Salmonoid Reply
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