Looking ahead to this weekend’s game I’m trying to figure out why the Sharks should not win this game. That’s right, I said not win, as in lose, against the Highlanders. I can’t believe that as Sharks fans we’re actually leaning towards another Sharks loss in week six. And I’m saying we, because I’m getting a little seasick on that same boat.
Since the Super12 expanded to the Super14 in 2006 the Sharks has been one of the most successful teams over those four years. In fact they’ve been the most successful second only to the Crusaders, not even the Bulls who (according to the record books) has won 2 of the 4 tournaments since then has a better winning percentage than the Sharks.
As it stand for the past 4 years since 2006 up until 2009 here’s how teams fared based on win percentages, times in the play-offs, and then average log position.
- Crusaders 73% (4)
- Sharks 65% (2)
- Hurricanes 63% (3)
- Bulls 61% (3)
- Brumbies 59%
- Waratahs 57% (2)
- Chiefs 57% (1)
- Blues 53% (1)
- Stormers 44%
- Force 38%
- Highlanders 34%
- Lions 25%
- Reds 23%
- Cheetahs 23%
It does give a clear indication of just how good the Sharks has been over a couple of seasons, we might not have the trophy, but it does give some satisfaction when your team wins most of their games. So logic according to this stats says that the Sharks should be the dominant team for this weekend’s game. It’s not like the teams or the structures have changed a lot since 2006. These are basically the same teams we’ve been seeing for four years, right? If that’s not enough to have the scales tipped towards the Sharks then maybe this will help. Since the Super 14 the Sharks has not lost against the Highlanders once, not home or away.
I’m guessing no one’s changing their Superbru selections yet and neither am I, but why the heck not. Let’s compare the current teams as they stand on paper.
Fullback – Sorry Stefan, but you’re going up against one of the best 15’s in the competition.
Wings – Not if they play like they’ve been playing, but JP and Odwa are better players and the two wings of the Highlanders haven’t shown anything special in an attacking team so far.
Centers – Swannie and Adi has been combining well and I think Swannie will set up some good space and forward momentum going up against the much smaller Jason Shoemark.
Half-Back – What do you thing? A settled scrummie and a Daniel Carter backup contender or an out of form scrummie and a second string European?
Kankowski and other Sharks backrow vs Highlanders backrow? Kankowski!!!
The Highlanders has good locks, but I think Sykes and Johan have grown into an excellent pairing and will have the ascendancy this time…
And I don’t even want to talk about our front-row, since technically they should be better than almost all of the teams. It’s our “Bok” front-row, but the chances are good that the Highlanders will win this battle and again prove that something just isn’t right there.
The Sharks has lost all their games so far, but then the highlanders lost all but one. The Highlanders has scored 12 tries so far and the Sharks only 4, but then the Highlanders conceded 20 and the Sharks only 11. The highlanders are coming back from South Africa after a bashing by both the Stormers and the Bulls.
It will be embarrassing if the Sharks loses this one.
C’mon Sharks you’ve made us proud before and I know you can do it again.Tweet