Letgo

The Crusaders challenge


Written by Maria Delport (Letgo)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 4 Apr 2013 at 11:39
Tagged with : , , , , , , , ,

The Sharks will be welcoming the Crusaders to Kings Park on Friday night for the 8th time in the history of the competition and for the first time since 2009, as the conference system ensured that these teams did not meet last year. The last time these sides played against each other they made history by playing the first Super Rugby match on European soil, when they faced off at Twickenham. The Crusaders delivered an exhibition and came out victors in that game as they have in most games where these teams met before.

For the Sharks the up side is, that of the 3 games they have won against the Crusaders, all three were at Kings Park and they will be hoping to improve and make that record an even 50% this weekend.

John Plumtree and his men are all too familiar with the situation between the two teams, as Marcell Coetzee told reporters in a press conference yesterday; the team has been discussing their record against their upcoming opposition.

“When the coach asked how many times we’ve beaten the Crusaders, there weren’t a lot of guys in the room that could raise their hands.

“I’m looking forward to it. It’s a great challenge for me and for the team. The Crusaders are well respected worldwide and just competing with them at Super Rugby level will be awesome.”

“Part of the Crusaders’ great strengths is their offload ability and their skill level is very high. We just have to adjust to it defensively, take the game to them and not allow them to get into the game that much, and just close it down where we can” said Coetzee.

The Sharks are a team that pride themselves in their defence and aside from the Brumbies game, have not let many tries slip through,. They will be hoping that their defence will hold up again this week.

Yesterday John Plumtree indicated that the Crusaders will be one of their toughest challengers in this area.

“Their skill level is very high, their backs and forwards handle the ball really well, they use the full width of the field, so our defensive play will definitely have to be very accurate over the weekend.”

“The breakdown will be a big area, it always is against Kiwi teams and we have to make sure that we’re competitive in that area.” said Plumtree

The Crusaders in their somewhat surprising win against the Stormers showed that aside from all these threats they are also threatening at lineout time and although Plumtree was aware of how dangerous it could be to struggle in this area, he feels his team will be ready.

“We are operating pretty well at lineout time, we’re probably operating at 83, 84% so that is quite high at lineout time, but we know that they have All Black locks.

“You can’t have a meltdown in an area like the lineout.

“The Crusaders keep the ball for long periods of time, so we want to ensure that we secure possession and certainly the lineout has been a big focus this week for us, it has been a big focus for us the whole season” , emphasised the coach.

The Crusaders are touring South Africa with players like Richie McCaw, Dan Carter and Kieran Read absent from the squad, but any thought of complacency from the Sharks would have been wiped out by their performance against the Stormers last week. John Plumtree believes that the systems the Canterbury side has in place will always ensure that there is a player that can step up, when a top players is unavailable.

“They have the model at Canterbury in terms of developing their own. It has been one of their strengths, the All Blacks aren’t available through the ITM Cup and I guess that’s where their school starts from, in terms of developing players for Super Rugby. They have a good academy system in Canterbury as well, so there’s no surprise there, they always have players that can compete at this level.

“Obviously you can’t easily replace players like Kieran Reed, Richie McCaw and Dan Carter, they are world class players, but certainly what we saw last week was that the young guys did more than a good job. You have to give Coach Todd Blackadder and the assistant coaches a lot of credit for how good that side was last week.” said Plumtree.



22 Comments

  • :twisted: Great article. We beat the Rebels only because we played well as a team. We played for our team mates and this is the only way to beat the Saders. If we do not offload the ball enough we will not create needed space.
    Because they keep the ball and are great at breakdowns, our defence needs to hurt them and not only halt them. We shall have to compete in the air as well as on the ground to disrupt their rhythm.
    This game will be about the basics, I believe. :twisted:

  • Comment 1, posted at 04.04.13 12:09:42 by KILLER SHARK Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    KILLER SHARKTeam captain
     
  • :twisted: Cheezzze and crackers! Was I blogging about rugby or the battle of Britain?! :twisted:

  • Comment 2, posted at 04.04.13 12:11:15 by KILLER SHARK Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    KILLER SHARKTeam captain
     
  • Im in Durban for business, and decided to visit the sharks captain practice. Feedback: everyone looking good and in good spirit. Had a chat with a few guys and everyone looking forward to the game. Ludick sat out the practice and mvovo’s hand strapped. Suprise for me was when Paul Jordaan slotted his goal kick from everywhere that Frans Steyn tried from. When i left, Lambie and bosman were still practicing goal kicks.

  • Comment 3, posted at 04.04.13 12:19:07 by VanWilder Reply

    VanWilderCurrie Cup player
     
  • “We are operating pretty well at lineout time, we’re probably operating at 83, 84% so that is quite high at lineout time, but we know that they have All Black locks.

    We’re PROBABLY operating at 83,84%… That is a very accurate estimation :mrgreen:

  • Comment 4, posted at 04.04.13 16:48:41 by The Sharks Sharkie Reply
    Author
    The Sharks SharkieVodacom Cup player
     
  • They`re without SBW, DC, McCaw, Dagg etc . .
    We`ve got Frans Steyn, Bosman in the form of his life, Lambie, Coetzee etc . .

    Jafta won`t be the referee . .

    It`s a home game for us and we`re favourites on Sportsbet!

    We`ve Got This! :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

  • Comment 5, posted at 04.04.13 19:48:26 by Original Pierre Reply
    Author
    Original PierreSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Original Pierre (Comment 5) : seeing that Sharks will lose.

  • Comment 6, posted at 04.04.13 21:03:58 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
    JDAssistant coach
     
  • @Original Pierre (Comment 5) : It is worse we got van Lourens “I made a decision myself” van der flippen Merwe :evil:

  • Comment 7, posted at 04.04.13 21:53:43 by BR Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Currie Cup player
     
  • @Original Pierre (Comment 5) : Jafta had a bad day. Usually I would prefer him the v/d Merwe.

  • Comment 8, posted at 05.04.13 01:38:30 by MysticShark Reply
    Competition Winner
    MysticSharkTeam captain
     
  • @BR (Comment 7) : he only has to ask for a replay on the big screen and not a call from the tv ref. Will save a lot of time.

  • Comment 9, posted at 05.04.13 08:36:32 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
    JDAssistant coach
     
  • @JD (Comment 9) : reason he can’t do that is that it’s not actually legal according to the protocol. Louwrens should have been disciplined for consulting the TMO but then refusing to listen to his recommendation.

  • Comment 10, posted at 05.04.13 09:24:29 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
    robdylanHead Coach
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 10) : Agreed, but it also happened last weekend. I honestly can’t remember who the ref was but, it was Duane’s tip tackle.

  • Comment 11, posted at 05.04.13 09:28:22 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
    NostrasethTeam captain
     
  • @Seth101 (Comment 11) : Which I personally would have given a red, as not only was it an uncontrolled lift, it was also completely off the ball.

  • Comment 12, posted at 05.04.13 09:34:52 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
    NostrasethTeam captain
     
  • @Seth101 (Comment 12) : Seth, are you serious about doing some more writing?

  • Comment 13, posted at 05.04.13 09:56:24 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
    robdylanHead Coach
     
  • @Seth101 (Comment 11) : Steve Welsh has just asked “can you bring it up on the big screen please?”.

  • Comment 14, posted at 05.04.13 09:56:59 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
    NostrasethTeam captain
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 13) : Yes, for sure!

  • Comment 15, posted at 05.04.13 10:01:32 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
    NostrasethTeam captain
     
  • @Seth101 (Comment 15) : ok, I’m always in need of help.

    Can you send me a mail when you get time? rob at sharksworld dotcoza

  • Comment 16, posted at 05.04.13 10:22:43 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
    robdylanHead Coach
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 16) : Done, just confirm you get it please :) .

  • Comment 17, posted at 05.04.13 10:29:59 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
    NostrasethTeam captain
     
  • @Seth101 (Comment 17) : replying now

  • Comment 18, posted at 05.04.13 10:31:32 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
    robdylanHead Coach
     
  • @Seth101 (Comment 11) : Craig Joubert I believe it was and even if it is against protocol I prefer it as it is much quicker.

  • Comment 19, posted at 05.04.13 13:10:40 by The Sharks Sharkie Reply
    Author
    The Sharks SharkieVodacom Cup player
     
  • @The Sharks Sharkie (Comment 19) : Agree, the on field ref is also better qualified to make the correct decision. They might as well “can” the tv ref where stadium screens are available.

  • Comment 20, posted at 05.04.13 13:19:22 by FireTheLooser Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • The Kings showing us what can be achieved with the right attitude and commitment! Hope the boys can show the same fighting spirit tonight and beat these guys.

  • Comment 21, posted at 05.04.13 13:20:03 by GreatSharksays Reply

    Assistant coach
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 20) : I feel that in the in-goal area we still need refs. The close calls where there are bodies lying everywhere I still feel should be made by the calm man in the box by himself away from players’ influence. However, other, general calls certainly should be handled by the ref on the ground.

  • Comment 22, posted at 05.04.13 13:25:43 by The Sharks Sharkie Reply
    Author
    The Sharks SharkieVodacom Cup player
     

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