Baldrick

Taking some positives


Written by Alan Williams (Baldrick)

Posted in :Currie Cup, Original Content, Sharks on 15 Jul 2009 at 08:56
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I’m an eternal optimist. There it is – out there – admitted like an alcoholic at an AA meeting. But is that such a bad thing? Tempered by a dose of reality, maybe the clouds of doom and gloom will remain in that place where winter rainfall makes it the most inhospitable place to be – Cape Town!

Yes, the Sharks lost, and yes, we were made to look pretty ordinary. But is there shame losing away from home against a good side?

Reading something on the Sharks website, assistant coach Grant Bashford pointed out a very salient point: “Every year when the so-called minnow sides start at full strength in the Currie Cup, there are often upsets,” he said on www.sharksrugby.co.za.

“What you tend to find is that later in the campaign the smaller Unions pick up injuries and if they don’t have the depth, they fall away so catching them in the early stages of the competition is never an easy game, they can become really dangerous.

So just as Griquas can be applauded for their win over Free State, will they have the depth to cause another upset in the latter stages of the tournament?

Yes, the Sharks are weak right now and some teams are going to see them ripe for the picking, but if you look at the composition of the Springbok Tri Nations squad and count the number of players missing from each side, yes, the Sharks are severely depleted, but wait until those players get back.

Last year we got Frederic Michalak midway through the tournament, and it appears likely we’ll get Hernandez even sooner. Riaan Swanepoel has had a year now, last year he was making his debut. Jean Deysel missed the fist month or so last year, he starts this year.

The point is there is a lot more to be positive about this year than last, and we won the trophy last year. I think we just need some patience, we will battle and even lose a game here or there, but if we are willing to understand the scenario and accept it, there won’t be so much need for early doom and gloom.

And ask yourself this: Would you rather be a Free State fan after your almost full-strength side lost at home to a second division side?



34 Comments

  • Heard a good idea the other day. They should also start anonymous alcoholics. That’s where a group of people get together and get dronk and then not tell each other their names. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 1, posted at 15.07.09 09:06:38 by McLovin Reply
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  • blackshark here, and I’m an optimist!

    Sharks to bounce back!

  • Comment 2, posted at 15.07.09 09:16:20 by blackshark Reply
    blackshark - I'm back!Super Rugby player
     
  • Last year’s semifinalists : Number of losses

    The Sharks 2
    Vodacom Blue Bulls 3
    Vodacom FS Cheetahs 5
    Xerox Lions 6

    I think we’ll lose more than 2 this year – but we have to take it one game at a time…and go for a strong finish like we did last year.

  • Comment 3, posted at 15.07.09 09:27:01 by blackshark Reply
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  • I have no doubt that the Sharks will make the play-offs and that the returning Boks and Hernandez wil make a huge difference…..my main concern is Plumtree and his lack of attacking creativity…..and his apparent ‘don’t care’ attitude towards the Currie Cup…..I’m not convinced that he manages the youngsters correctly and that he is only trying to do damage control until the Boks return….this won’t give the youngsters a lot of confidence…The senior players in the pack also need to put their hands up and start producing…the likes of Botes,Daniel, Kockett need to be the leaders now.

    Jeez I sound negative, but the Sharks have the potential and need to use it effectively.

  • Comment 4, posted at 15.07.09 09:37:09 by Pokkel Reply
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  • and you were up against one of those minnow teams last weel…….Only joking WPW :mrgreen:

  • Comment 5, posted at 15.07.09 09:43:41 by Whindy Reply
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  • Well said Baldrick.
    Regarding the weather, if you havent experienced the Capes winters then its hard to explain how miserable it really is, it shouldnt be a factor but I think it invariably is. As I said yesterday, the game at Loftus this weekend will give us a good indication of where the Sharks are at the moment.

  • Comment 6, posted at 15.07.09 09:56:12 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 6) : it won’t give us any indication of how much of a factor the weather actually was, though… pity the Bulls aren’t playing WP at Newlands.

  • Comment 7, posted at 15.07.09 10:06:42 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 7) :
    Maybe they will take their weather with them, it does rain sometimes in the winter on the highveldt. But seriously under favourable rugby conditions for both teams I think we will see this Provionce side testing the Bulls depth as well. I dont think a win for the Bulls is a foregone conclussion.

  • Comment 8, posted at 15.07.09 10:19:01 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 8) : no, not a foregone conclusion, but they’re still favourites, IMO…

  • Comment 9, posted at 15.07.09 10:38:39 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 9) :
    I’m one of those that tend to almost always take the home team as the favourites.

  • Comment 10, posted at 15.07.09 11:31:28 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 10) : me too… especially on SB. Although last weekend I didn’t, and paid the price.

  • Comment 11, posted at 15.07.09 11:35:22 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 11) : and SB is always difficult when your hart plays a part in your decisions…I honestly though that WP would win, but it’s the worst feeling when you bet against your own team….and they win. :oops:

  • Comment 12, posted at 15.07.09 11:39:48 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 11) : @Pokkel (Comment 12) :

    I just CANNOT do that… :oops: I think for that I must get the price as the die-hard Sharks fan!! :wink:

  • Comment 13, posted at 15.07.09 11:42:44 by Prof. Ice Reply
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  • @Prof. Ice (Comment 13) : I always pick the sharks, though… it’s the other teams where I’ll apply my home team default rule :)

  • Comment 14, posted at 15.07.09 11:53:54 by robdylan Reply
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  • I was spot on last week, even the Kwas win, but chose the Sharks in the final game, this after even posting 2 weeks ago that the Sharks would be too thin on the ground.

  • Comment 15, posted at 15.07.09 12:14:29 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 15) : Jarson Armstrong has the yellow cap on SB! who will win it next week?

  • Comment 16, posted at 15.07.09 12:18:59 by Rahul Reply

    RahulCurrie Cup player
     
  • @Salmonoid (Comment 15) : hindsight, eh?

  • Comment 17, posted at 15.07.09 12:22:30 by robdylan Reply
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  • Did anyone get to watch the KZN / Freestate game at Craven week yesterday. I didnt, and havent seen too many reports, but one report I did read mentioned that of all the teams on show these 2 were by far the most physical It also seems that this Zelinga has a massive boot on him, even into the strong wind. The report also said that the 2 teams seemed to be technically very well coached.

    Sharks academy have set up a tent (recruitment centre) at the venue, no doubt ready to snare any hapless Freestater that walks within 500m of them.

  • Comment 18, posted at 15.07.09 12:23:29 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 18) : They just park an oranje trekker in front of the tent and the sheep follow

  • Comment 19, posted at 15.07.09 12:26:04 by Rahul Reply

    RahulCurrie Cup player
     
  • @Salmonoid (Comment 18) : apparently a youngster by the name of Juan Cook impressed for free state… a flanker.

  • Comment 20, posted at 15.07.09 12:28:41 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Rahul (Comment 16) :
    And soon his cousin Lance will have a yellow jersey in France.

  • Comment 21, posted at 15.07.09 12:32:23 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 17) :
    Its the mad mist that clouds rational thoughts that fans have for their teams.

  • Comment 22, posted at 15.07.09 12:36:09 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 22) : indeed… it is a constant companion

  • Comment 23, posted at 15.07.09 12:48:12 by robdylan Reply
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  • what, is Wednesday the day when everybody actually has to work?

  • Comment 24, posted at 15.07.09 12:51:51 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 24) :

    Something like that…

    When is Plum announcing the squad?

    Is he still out looking for a lock? Waiting for Muller to recover?
    Helping JMH unpack?

  • Comment 25, posted at 15.07.09 13:18:59 by blackshark Reply

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  • @blackshark (Comment 25) : I have it, but can’t put it up yet… :(

  • Comment 26, posted at 15.07.09 13:34:14 by robdylan Reply
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  • @blackshark (Comment 25) : ok, scratch that. It’s up!

  • Comment 27, posted at 15.07.09 13:35:29 by robdylan Reply
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  • Comparisons between the 2008 team that somehow managed to grind a bonus point victory against Boland – and the current team…at face value…

    Backline:

    Sharks:

    2008 2009

    15 Stefan Terblanché,15. Stefan Terblanche (Captain)

    14 Lwazi Mvovo, 14. Odwa Ndungane

    13 Waylon Murray,13. Andries Strauss

    12 Andries Strauss,12. Riaan Swanepoel

    11 Henno Mentz, 11. Lwazi Mvovo

    10 Andrew Borgen, 10. Guy Cronjé

    9 Rory Kockott, 9. Rory Kockott

  • Comment 28, posted at 16.07.09 09:45:00 by blackshark Reply

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  • Forwards:

    8 Keegan Daniel, 8. Keegan Daniel
    7 Steven Sykes, 7. Jean Deysel
    6 Jacques Botes, 6. Jacques Botes
    5 Johann Muller (captain), 5. Albert van den Berg
    4 Alistair Hargreaves, 4. Steven Sykes
    3 Jannie du Plessis, 3. Patric Cilliers
    2 Craig Burden, 2. Craig Burden
    1 Deon Carstens., 1. Deon Carstens

  • Comment 29, posted at 16.07.09 09:49:58 by blackshark Reply

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  • Reserves:

    Reserves:
    16 Skipper Badenhorst, 16. Skipper Badenhorst
    17 Robbie Harris, 17. Wiehahn Herbst
    18 Nikolai Blignaut, 18. Nikolai Blignaut
    19 Skholiwe Ndlovu,
    19.Justin Downey
    20 Charl McLeod, 20. Ross Cronjé
    21 Riaan Swanepoel, 21. Monty Dumond
    22 Monty Dumond. 22. Luzuko Vulindlu

  • Comment 30, posted at 16.07.09 09:53:34 by blackshark Reply

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  • @blackshark (Comment 28) : can we compare the forwards?

  • Comment 31, posted at 16.07.09 10:03:03 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 31) : nevermind :)

  • Comment 32, posted at 16.07.09 10:04:14 by robdylan Reply
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  • Goddamn HTML… :smile:

    Anyway – our backline looks ok.
    Borgen and Cronje balance each other out.
    We lost the out of form Henno and gained Odwa.
    Lost sideways Waylon for silent Swannie.
    Problem – Strauss at 13.

    Loose-trio
    We lost Sykes and gained Deysel – yay!

    Tight 5
    Lost Muller, Big Al and Jannie – and gained Old Al , Sykes and Pat…whew!

    Bench
    I think Rob is happier with Justin…
    Zuks will add another dimension if the backline needs an injection.

    Let’s go for the BP Sharks!

  • Comment 33, posted at 16.07.09 10:05:23 by blackshark Reply

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  • It is very difficult for me to get excited about tomorrow’s game.

    Last time watching Sharks against the Lions (and granted these was possibly A side of apparently that best of what Isles have to offer) but they looked so happless. Not even half of decent attacking move.

    I just see Stefan kicking and Rory running with the ball into Boland forwards. Not exciting at all.

  • Comment 34, posted at 16.07.09 10:06:02 by rekinek Reply
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