Big Fish

Last Exit to Bronkhorstspruit Vol. 4: The Abide Guide


Written by (Big Fish)

Posted in :Original Content, Reader Submissions, Sharks, Super Rugby on 30 Jul 2014 at 14:17

So another Super Rugby season has come (and gone, for all intents), and despite the fact that every possible factor worked in our favour, the Sharks have once again, frustratingly, failed to lay their hands on any silverware (excluding the conference trophy, which right-minded people everywhere – excluding the folks down in the Cape, obviously – see as utterly meaningless).

[ARTICLE COURTESY OF CULLING SONG]

 

As can be expected, in the aftermath of last weekend’s capitulation against the Crusaders, all manners of speculation, philosophising, conjecture and outright derision has abounded, with calls being made for changes to the coaching staff, the sacking of players, appointment of mental- and other specialist coaches, and even a move to Moses Mabhida being mooted.

 

And yet, over the approximate two-decade run of Super Rugby, all of the above (excepting the move of stadiums) has been undergone, often a multitude of times, all without result. Even the all-conquering team of the early-to-mid 90’s, which is still largely regarded as the high water mark of Sharks rugby, failed in their assault of the Super 12 summit. In fact, it is starting to reach the point where those inclined to believe that larger forces guide our lives may just start thinking that the Sharks are destined never to win the southern hemisphere’s premier competition.

 

All of which has prompted me to start thinking about what I would like to see happening at our beloved union. The conclusion I have reached is that a completely new approach is required; a new philosophy or culture, if you will. Of course, any philosophy or culture requires touchstones to guide that specific vision. And in this case, those touchstones – the foundations of the new value system – should be: The Big Lebowski & Rocket from the Crypt.

 

For those unfamiliar with any/all of aforementioned (for shame!), allow me to offer a brief primer. The Big Lebowski is a Coen Brothers-directed film that, although unsuccessful on initial theatrical release has gone on to achieve massive cult status, largely due to its cast of memorable characters and infinitely quotable dialogue. Moreover, it has spawned a religion, dudeism, of which yours truly is an ordained priest/minister/cleric/what-have-you. The underlying tenet of dudeism is that what follows after life has run its course is ultimately unknowable, and that we should stop worrying about that, and rather focus on making the most of the here and now.

 

Rocket from the Crypt (or RFTC) is a punk-inspired rock and roll band from San Diego. While they are by no means the best band in the world (nor my favourite, or even one of my 20 favourite bands – and yes, there is a distinction between the best band in the world and my favourite band), what they are absolutely peerless at is having fun making music, and palpably projecting that sense of fun in their albums and live shows. Furthermore, they are also renowned for the reverence they have for their fans, and for the lengths they go to in engaging with them; whether it be refusing to play on stages, rather setting up in the middle crowds; or allowing free entry to any show, regardless of venue, time or ticket price to all fans sporting a RFTC tattoo; or handing our lyric sheets at shows to encourage sing alongs. With RFTC it’s all about the joy of music, and spreading the joy around.

 

So with aforementioned in mind, here’s what I want the Sharks to do; stop worrying about winning Super Rugby. Rather focus on developing player skill sets, and an enterprising, entertaining brand of rugby. I’m not advocating turning into the Harlem Globe trotters of rugby (aka. The Cheetahs) and throwing the ball around aimlessly (as they say, you have to earn the right to go wide, but when you have done so, do so, damnit!), but rather an approach where effective utilisation of the backline in an quest to consistently score tries is seen as a key value. And at least make it look like being on the field is more fun than, say, being an accountant or lawyer.

 

Also, I’d like to the Sharks focus on developing and/or recruiting memorable players; players who have X-factor on the field of play (e.g. Keegan Daniel, Willie le Roux), as well as offering larger-than-life personas off it (e.g. Cabous van der Westhuizen, Nick Cummins). Players, in short, that can entertain on the field of play, and that can stimulate interest in the team off it.

 

Basically, what I want is for the fun to be brought back to being a Sharks fan. I know this is a pipe dream, and that in the modern sporting world, results are what matter, but frankly, I don’t give a damn anymore. Courtesy of the fare dished out on the field, I’ve watched at most three or four Sharks games this year. And had we gone on to win Super Rugby, I’d be ecstatic and celebrate the achievement, but still wouldn’t be tuning in for the games.

 

So call me a fair weather fan if you will (and I’m sure many will take up that challenge), but I’ll take the Big Lebowski over The English Patient and RFTC over Mozart any day of the week, and now I want a running, adventurous, entertaining Sharks team over what we are currently faced with.



77 Comments

  • My sentiments exactly, I just wish I could stop investing so much of my time in the Sharks.

  • Comment 1, posted at 30.07.14 14:40:20 by Pokkel Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
    Team captain
     
  • Nice one, the Dude.

    I guess if you cant win, at least lose pretty. ;-)

  • Comment 2, posted at 30.07.14 14:50:44 by Big Fish Reply
    Administrator
    Big FishTeam captain
     
  • Ag no man. Waddehel has any of this gotta do with our fair and humble dorp what is called Bronkhorstspruit?

    Seriously though, the same goes for the Bokke. Watching the All Blacks ( Saders, Chiefs, Blues, etc. Even the Black Ferns….) is just so much more fun, unfortunately. So I guess, Go ‘Saders!Justin Marshall hit the nail on the head before the game.

  • Comment 3, posted at 30.07.14 14:57:58 by CyberSakkie Reply

    CyberSakkieUnder 19 player
     
  • @Big Fish (Comment 2) : Wow! That is a very succinct precis of the article! I must say, I really admire your economy with words…

  • Comment 4, posted at 30.07.14 14:59:23 by Culling Song Reply
    Author
    Culling SongSuper Rugby player
     
  • Interesting points i must say.
    I think with the forward power the Sharks have, i really dont see why our backline cant run it every time we get it from the forwards. Yes i understand playing in Durbs in feb etc doesnt really cater for it and you want to win home games etc. But surely there should be more freedom when playing away from home? Will be interesting to see if BMH follows JW’s gameplan in the CC or if he puts his own spin on things.

  • Comment 5, posted at 30.07.14 15:09:18 by SheldonK Reply

    SheldonKSuper Rugby player
     
  • This is awesome duuuuuudddeeeeee!!! :mrgreen:

    There is something in your article that irritates me to no end, you say focus on developing skill sets. On the surface that sounds so reasonable and clever, but think about what you are saying. You are saying that players at the highest professional level in the sport do not have the skill sets. This is a massive problem, professional coaches should not be coaching skill sets, all professional players should be expected to have learned the skill sets before they became professional, that is what school boy rugby is for, and the Academy. But seriously, if you are good enough to be picked for the Sharks, that should require the skill sets. Professional coaches should be focusing on the finer points and game plan, as well as how players react to the situation on the field, professional coaches do not have time to teach skill sets, if they are teaching skill sets, they are behind the competition already.

    The change I advocate is to enhance the current game plan, ensure that all kicks are either into space, touch or contestable, the kicking for field position game plan works (look at the Crusaders). The difference is when the opportunity presents itself, the players must all be prepared to see the chance, and to react to it as a team, move the ball wide if that is the correct plan, but have your support runners aware and ready to be there, or know that blind side is better and have the whole team react accordingly, with support runners reacting and always being on the shoulder of the ball carrier. It can be done, the Crusaders do it, and the players should already have the skill sets to do it. My concern about JW is he may be too structured (ala Rassie) and not allow his players the chance to react to the situation on the field. There, my free advice, worth every penny!

  • Comment 6, posted at 30.07.14 15:13:30 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • @SheldonK (Comment 5) : Just want to say one thing, I honestly think the Sharks have a very similar game plan to the Crusaders, the difference is they execute it so much more efficiently, every kick is either in touch, space or contestable and they all sense exactly the right time to move the ball.

  • Comment 7, posted at 30.07.14 15:16:56 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 6) :
    So you are saying that the Sharks players have the skill sets to play a more dynamic gameplan as opposed to the static break-down to break-down gameplan we currently do?

    I find that hard to believe. Perhaps they have the ability – THAT is something that is developed at lower levels of rugby. But a skill is a learned competency to perform a task or activity at consistently high level. And there are clearly a number of areas where this does not hold true for the Sharks.

  • Comment 8, posted at 30.07.14 15:23:16 by Big Fish Reply
    Administrator
    Big FishTeam captain
     
  • @Big Fish (Comment 8) : BF, if they don’t they should. Do you really think the NZ SR coaches are teaching skill sets? Their players already have them. That is why I said if a coach is teaching skill sets at this level he is already behind the competition. Personally I believe the Sharks players have the skill sets, they are just suppressed by an overly constrictive game plan. The Crusaders players are allowed the freedom to react on the field, I believe the Sharks, like the Boks are much more restricted by the coaches.

  • Comment 9, posted at 30.07.14 15:25:48 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • If you look at each player in our backline individually, I have seen the skills, I believe they have them, they just aren’t given the freedom to exhibit them on a regular basis.

  • Comment 10, posted at 30.07.14 15:28:07 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • If you take our kickers, they have the skills to kick the ball pretty much to wherever they want with several different types of kicks, I have seen it. Sure they miss every now and then, but everyone does. So when they kick it directly at a player, that is where they wanted to kick it. The question is why would they want to do that? Seriously, do you think that every time they kicked the ball directly to someone they really meant to kick it somewhere else but didn’t have the skills and missed the kick? As I have have said over and over, kicks should be to touch, space or contestable.

  • Comment 11, posted at 30.07.14 15:38:08 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • If I look at this season, and ignore for a moment the immense physical ability and skill the guys show in winning the confrontations, then I must say that clearly we lack the skill sets you refer to.

    Our kicking and handling was very poor for the last 2 weeks in a row, and our handling and running skills looked poor all season. Again, I believe that the players may have the ability, but no, they do not currently have the skill.

    But lets not forget that skills are not just a matter of learning – they are also a matter of practising/ using. If the gameplan does not require the use of certain skill sets, than why expect that they players will develop/ maintain them?

    I think that your assumption that if a player does not currently have a skill set means that he either isnt capable of having it or hasnt learnt it, is incorrect. It may simply be that he simply isnt currently maintaining it, and may instead be focusing on other areas of his game – as dictated by the gameplan.

  • Comment 12, posted at 30.07.14 15:45:23 by Big Fish Reply
    Administrator
    Big FishTeam captain
     
  • Dancing Bear,

    Long time fella! Hope you’re well.

    On the subject of skills, your view holds water.
    However, only if skilled players are picked. But when contracts are being offered to the likes of Hoffman and Cronje it sort of goes out the window.

  • Comment 13, posted at 30.07.14 15:46:32 by VinChainSaw Reply
    Author
    VinChainSawSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 7) : Yes u are right to an extent. The game plans are similar except the new zealanders execute it more accurately. They also kick with an attacking purpose more than just to get the ball out their half. There is nothing wrong with a kicking game…providing you do it with attacking purpose and do it accurately. I one for prefer the balanced game plan as always kicking or always running is predictable and easy to defend and counter.

  • Comment 14, posted at 30.07.14 15:53:52 by SheldonK Reply

    SheldonKSuper Rugby player
     
  • I agree you have to work to maintain the skill sets, but teaching them at the professional level….At the professional level the coaching focus should be on implementing the skill sets into the game plan and reading the situation and reacting accordingly.

    Did you see the dressing room cameras at half time of the Crusaders match? McCaw and Read were doing all the talking to the Crusaders and Jake all the talking to the Sharks. Jake should be preparing the team and then on game day, let the players do their thing as the Crusaders did.

  • Comment 15, posted at 30.07.14 15:54:01 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • I’m an accountant :shock:

  • Comment 16, posted at 30.07.14 15:58:16 by ChrisS Reply
    Author
    ChrisSCurrie Cup player
     
  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 13) : Howzit Vin. I suppose I am in something of a dream world since clearly the discussion of the skills of SA players vs NZ players at the Junior level have always concluded that SA players have inferior skill sets. It is a problem since I think size is really focused on at junior levels, resulting in bang and bash rugby and little chance to develop the skills. I am not saying the SA SR coaches don’t have to teach skills, it is just that having to do that puts the SA teams behind right from the start.

  • Comment 17, posted at 30.07.14 15:58:55 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 6) : I hear you, and want to retort in the following manner:

    1) This article was a hastily written opinion piece largely aimed at expressing my frustration at the current style/standard of play. A comment like “focus on developing skill set” was written with less consideration than your response ;-)

    2) I do actually think that, rightly or wrongly, coaches (or at least Sharks/SA coaches) are in fact working on developing skills sets. Contrast the Marcel Coetzee of 2013 with the current iteration; his breakdown skills have improved immeasurably. I for one am not convinced that was all due to his own doing (although he certainly played a significant role!). Ditto for S’Bura, Lwazi’s kicking game, etc. etc.

  • Comment 18, posted at 30.07.14 16:02:33 by Culling Song Reply
    Author
    Culling SongSuper Rugby player
     
  • @ChrisS (Comment 16) : Yes, and your point is…? :mrgreen:

  • Comment 19, posted at 30.07.14 16:03:03 by Culling Song Reply
    Author
    Culling SongSuper Rugby player
     
  • @SheldonK (Comment 14) : Like I said, kick to touch, space or contestable. But I agree, there always has to be a level of unpredictability introduced, but it has to be done in low risk situations.

    My feeling is since the game plan for the Sharks is more structured, the kicker does not feel he has an option but to kick. When he reads the field and sees there is no open space to kick to, and no opportunity to launch a contestable kick, then perhaps it is a good opportunity to run or pass the ball and have the freedom to do so.

  • Comment 20, posted at 30.07.14 16:03:36 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Culling Song (Comment 18) : I agree, SA coaches do have to focus on skill sets, I suppose all my comments have been lamenting that torturous fact. ;-)

  • Comment 21, posted at 30.07.14 16:05:49 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 21) : But in all honesty, I do believe that this fact does place SA teams at an immediate disadvantage in SR. Which is why I suppose that when we do well in the comp it is usually a result of superior physicality and aggressiveness.

  • Comment 22, posted at 30.07.14 16:09:18 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • I saw a few instances on Saturday where the Sharks were passing and catching the ball on levels unseen by SA teams….levels that even the kiwis would be jealous of.

    Sadly, our boys hadn’t played this style the entire season, so they ended up making some brain dead mistake instead of punishing the Saders with a 7 pointer.

    Our coaches are unable to utilise this sort of playing style into a winning formula….sad really, ’cause they make our players seem like a group of talentless chumps. :oops:

  • Comment 23, posted at 30.07.14 16:15:50 by FireTheLooser Reply

    FireTheLooserTeam captain
     
  • We had everything needed to tie the room together, but somehow managed to piss on it. Again. That’s the closest TBL analogy to Sharks rugby.

  • Comment 24, posted at 30.07.14 16:28:44 by rhineshark Reply

    Spirit of RugbyTeam captain
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 23) : Have you ever seen Frans get a backline going the way Butch James could? When you look at each backline player for the Sharks, including first line replacements, they all seem to have the requisite skill sets for their position, but are not given the freedom often enough to utilize them. Also, while Frans is a superb rugby player and athlete, a world class 15 and 12, he is limited at 10. He did admirably filling in for so much of the season, but we have to admit the backline was hampered by his less than adequate ability to get a backline off and going. His skill set at 10 is limited, but he is not and should not be a 10 full time.

  • Comment 25, posted at 30.07.14 16:32:07 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 25) : I think Kanko showed more vision and ability in getting our backline away, with his passing from our own goal line than Steyn.

    Sadly, when Zeilinga got to step up to the plate, he injured himself, and after that JW tried his Swiel experiment again.

    Zeilinga would have offered far more than Steyn, and I trust that he’ll be given his deserved starting spot during the CC.

  • Comment 26, posted at 30.07.14 16:36:42 by FireTheLooser Reply

    FireTheLooserTeam captain
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 26) : You’re right, but remember Steyn didn’t pick himself at 10, and he is much better at 12 or 15. He really worked hard at 10, and honestly kept us in some games we were able to win. Let’s not be too hard on Frans, surely the blame lies with JW for continuing to select him at 10 over Fred when he was available.

  • Comment 27, posted at 30.07.14 16:40:07 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 27) : Definitely not a Frans basher, I think he is a phenomenal sportsman….but not a 10, I prefer him at fullback.

  • Comment 28, posted at 30.07.14 16:44:06 by FireTheLooser Reply

    FireTheLooserTeam captain
     
  • I don’t think there is a Sharks player that gave more than Steyn did this season, and we know he had a sore knee for most of the season. He deserves our full respect, he had not played 10 in a very long time, he was out of position.

  • Comment 29, posted at 30.07.14 16:44:45 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 28) : I agree with you completely there, his best position is 15. He can really make an opposition consider their game plan when he is at 15. I actually like his 60 meter drop attempts when he plays 15.

  • Comment 30, posted at 30.07.14 16:46:17 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • I wonder if the ongoing knee problem will hamper his game at 15, he may end up being forced into the 12 role.

  • Comment 31, posted at 30.07.14 16:49:34 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
    Dancing BearSuper Rugby player
     
  • There are actually two things that according to my knowledge the Sharks haven’t tried:
    1. Move to Moses Madiba (which I doubt would magically fix things)
    2. Appoint a mental coach (which I think would help greatly)

    The Knave abideth.

  • Comment 32, posted at 30.07.14 16:53:25 by vanmartin Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
    vanmartinTeam captain
     
  • @vanmartin (Comment 32) : I think the move will make a significant subconscious contribution.

    A beautiful environment adds significantly to the psychology of people.

    A certain court house in Oz was completely redesigned, with the intention of improving the work environment of the judges, as well as giving those due in court a less stressful experience.

    Most interviewed claimed that the design of the courthouse had the desired calming effect.

    Different studies were also done on school children, where they completely removed the windows from the classroom, as well as the creative illustrations normally found on the walls.

    The aim was to improve the concentration of the students. Initially they had succeeded in their aim, but soon found that the students’ performance drastically dropped.

    I’m sure we’ll be able to find many more examples such as the above….the SHarks will make for a great case study. :grin:

  • Comment 33, posted at 30.07.14 17:04:18 by FireTheLooser Reply

    FireTheLooserTeam captain
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 30) : An his line kicks from the back is what the JW/HM gameplan requires…nay, in fact it is the only way that it can be effectively executed.

  • Comment 34, posted at 30.07.14 17:05:34 by FireTheLooser Reply

    FireTheLooserTeam captain
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 34) : @vanmartin (Comment 32) : I agree wiyth you both but state again the most important and in line with this article in changing the mindset/culture is a KOP dr.A winning culture/killer instinct/mental grit leading to complete composure on the field no matter what ,is first point that needs addressing,after that the rest can follow

  • Comment 35, posted at 30.07.14 17:22:45 by benji Reply

    Currie Cup player
     
  • @benji (Comment 35) : The two should go hand in hand….I’ll be furthering my learning on the subject of environmental psychology, so hope to give further insights into how a move to Moses Mabhida will IN FACT improve the Sharks chances of winning more regularly and ultimately winning SR. :grin:

  • Comment 36, posted at 30.07.14 17:37:06 by FireTheLooser Reply

    FireTheLooserTeam captain
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 36) : look I agree and would say the Sharks are in a discomfort zone,the discomfort of losing all the key games all the time,,all is stale, even down to the dancing girls,and this stale mindset has to influence the players ,so a move across the road might be one of the factors that kicks up the bum to a change and winning ways

  • Comment 37, posted at 30.07.14 17:51:59 by benji Reply

    Currie Cup player
     
  • @benji (Comment 37) : A move of venue has done wonders for the Pumas, moving from the dilapidated Witbank stadium to the wonderfully designed Nelspruit (can’t remember the new name) stadium.

    Both built environment as well as natural environment would have been contributing factors to a fresher more exciting Pumas team, able to now perform at top level CC.

  • Comment 38, posted at 30.07.14 18:10:20 by FireTheLooser Reply

    FireTheLooserTeam captain
     
  • @vanmartin (Comment 32) : Why am I under the impression that the Sharks did employ a mental coach during Dick Muir’s tenure?

  • Comment 39, posted at 30.07.14 18:38:07 by Culling Song Reply
    Author
    Culling SongSuper Rugby player
     
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 38) : I say move them to the Woodburn stadium and tell them they can move back if they win a SR title.

  • Comment 40, posted at 30.07.14 18:42:30 by rhineshark Reply

    Spirit of RugbyTeam captain
     
  • @rhineshark (Comment 24) : Pretty much sums it up…

  • Comment 41, posted at 30.07.14 19:07:05 by Culling Song Reply
    Author
    Culling SongSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Culling Song (Comment 39) : Entirely possible but not something I was aware of.

    @rhineshark (Comment 40) : Now that could actually work :D

  • Comment 42, posted at 30.07.14 20:19:37 by vanmartin Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
    vanmartinTeam captain
     
  • @Culling Song (Comment 39) : yes I think Dr. Henning Gericke was involved.

  • Comment 43, posted at 30.07.14 20:30:12 by JD Reply
    Author
    JDTeam captain
     
  • @Culling Song (Comment 18) : I remember the team of the 90′s, the reason I’m a Sharks supporter today. But even then there were frustrating times. But is was entertaining, with the likes of Joubert, Small, Cabous, Thompson, Honniball, Teichmann, Fyvie, Andrews, Ollie and so I can go on and on… MacIntosh… The Sharks have always produced the players or at least the teams over the years, but failing to win the ones that really matters have always been a problem

  • Comment 44, posted at 30.07.14 22:22:23 by pierre_mackie Reply
    Author
    pierre_mackieSuper Rugby player
     
  • @pierre_mackie (Comment 44) : sad but true, so many championship / finals that should have been but never quite happened. The Super rugby nightmare started in 1994 against Queensland and just never stopped.

  • Comment 45, posted at 30.07.14 23:30:07 by JD Reply
    Author
    JDTeam captain
     
  • @JD (Comment 45) : Exactly,but when does enough become enough?

  • Comment 46, posted at 30.07.14 23:46:43 by benji Reply

    Currie Cup player
     
  • @pierre_mackie (Comment 44) : just for interest sake I googled Super rugby a bit and realised that in 1994 EP was the fourth SA team to play in Super rugby even before WP and Free State. All but forgotten but interesting indeed.

  • Comment 47, posted at 30.07.14 23:48:02 by JD Reply
    Author
    JDTeam captain
     
  • @benji (Comment 46) : boet I don’t know?!?! Everyone will have his own answer to that question. For me it will be never as I’ve supported the Banana boys/Sharks for as long as I can remember, even in the dark days of playing B-Section rugby. I will never change teams and win or lose I will wear my Sharks jerseys with pride!!!!

  • Comment 48, posted at 30.07.14 23:56:01 by JD Reply
    Author
    JDTeam captain
     
  • Love the article, love the layout and the paragraphs. Also starting to think that we will never win Superugby… we also seem to fork things up in SR and make up for it in the CC….I for one am getting sick of it. But hey I agree, let’s rather focus on a brand that will get fans back to the stadium and most importantly, make better use of ball received from our powerful forwards. Not difficult to achieve at all, remember how well were playing when Brendon was coach? We were a very complete team and were even able to put 50 points on the Cheetahs and made a joke of the unbeaten WP team in the final….John should have a long conversation with Jake and if Jake isn’t prepared to acknowledge his limitations and get outside help from rugby guru’s like Brendon Venter so as to develop a complete playing style..he needs to submit his resignation with immediate effect. It is a real pity that Brendon isn’t based in Durban. Really believe we would have won this thing had he been coach. John Mitchell is also one such rugby guru and is based in Durban. John Mitchell needs to be brought into the system, I would even make him our attack coach. Jake White has serious limitations and is at his best when partnered with a strong attack minded person..eg. Eddie Jones, Larkham…maybe the Sean Everitt Jake White combo is the problem. Maybe Sean doesn’t have the voice or respect from Jake and is seen as a glorified waterboy that is clueless as we have not seen his influence on the game at all. We need to recruit more x type players that have BMT, not the soft cocks we currently have.

  • Comment 49, posted at 31.07.14 05:15:07 by GreatSharksays Reply

    Super Rugby player
     
  • WTF Big Fish !!!! Enjoy Rocket From the Crypt on game days. You are more in tune with music than with modern rugby. RIP

  • Comment 50, posted at 31.07.14 05:33:37 by DaveB Reply

    DaveBUnder 21 player
     
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 6) : If you had been coached ‘the skill sets’ in high school, it surely means you can do it, but if you don’t continue practicing those ‘skill sets’ you will become less and less competent at those ‘skill sets’.

    The Waratahs don’t play the way they do, because they have a team of players who were coached a certain why as school boys. They play that way because their coach focus on those things now.

  • Comment 51, posted at 31.07.14 07:41:59 by Letgo Reply
    Author
    LetgoTeam captain
     
  • @Big Fish (Comment 12) :

    Exactly!

  • Comment 52, posted at 31.07.14 07:45:02 by Letgo Reply
    Author
    LetgoTeam captain
     
  • @JD (Comment 47) : if not mistaken I think they made the CC play-offs that year

  • Comment 53, posted at 31.07.14 08:08:44 by pierre_mackie Reply
    Author
    pierre_mackieSuper Rugby player
     
  • Proof that skills are poor – 17 turnovers on average per game.

    One sees glimpses of awesome skills – e.g. the breakout run that SP and Kanko started. However the guys seem to struggle to maintain consistency.

    I think the decision making is the biggest problem, and that comes from a playing in a straight jacket playing style. You can only improve decision making through playing, and if you have a no-play playing style – there you go.

    The kicking game problems seems to be more of a lack of thinking that a lack of kicking skills. Crusaders kicked to regather the ball / gain territory. Sharks seem to kick because they don’t know what else to do.

  • Comment 54, posted at 31.07.14 08:19:25 by Bokhoring Reply

    BokhoringTeam captain
     
  • @Bokhoring (Comment 54) : The problem isn’t that we can’t make line breaks; rather that we have a pathetic conversion rate afterwards.

    Far too often there is no support, which leads to turnovers. When there is support, players don’t pass. When we do pass it’s often piss poor. Sometimes the ball is kicked away. Not to mention the number of balls lost in contact.

  • Comment 55, posted at 31.07.14 09:16:13 by rhineshark Reply

    Spirit of RugbyTeam captain
     
  • Great article. There is no reason the Sharks can’t play all-out rugby. We scored some marvellous tries (Jordaan’s inside pass to Chavanga at full speed to set up a try being a stand-out) and there’s no reason we can’t score more.

    The Crusaders tackle and attack, no reason not to do both, but in SA we focus on either one or the other e.g. Stormers and Cheetahs.

  • Comment 56, posted at 31.07.14 09:25:11 by StevieS Reply
    Author
    StevieSVodacom Cup player
     
  • Great article and agree with your points whole heartedly.

    In fact two things happended in our (supposedly fervent sharks fan) household this S15 season that reinforces these points:

    1. I starting really enjoying the watching the Lions games, officially making them my 2nd team, just cos they had the guts to go out and give it a go, even though it didn’t translate into many wins.

    2. Both my sons starting supporting other teams – one the Waratahs and the other the Chiefs, just because they enjoyed the kind of rugby that these teams were playing.

  • Comment 57, posted at 31.07.14 10:33:20 by stevovo Reply

    stevovoVodacom Cup player
     
  • @stevovo (Comment 57) : While I won’t move away from supporting the Sharks, I’m looking forward to this weekend’s final because of the quality of rugby likely to be on offer. Probably more so than if the Sharks had been in it. As a Sharks supporter, that’s a pretty crappy place to be in. :cry:

  • Comment 58, posted at 31.07.14 11:28:39 by Culling Song Reply
    Author
    Culling SongSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Culling Song (Comment 58) : Also looking forward to this weekend’s final, just to get a proper rugby fix…will be enjoying two very exciting teams, both able to bring it up front, and mix it up at the back.

  • Comment 59, posted at 31.07.14 11:41:06 by FireTheLooser Reply

    FireTheLooserTeam captain
     
  • @stevovo (Comment 57) : I don’t blame them. If I wasn’t such a die hard supporter I would have left them ages ago cause that is what you do when you are in an abusive relationship…..What the Sharks have done to their fans in Superugby history can only be explained as spousal abuse.

  • Comment 60, posted at 31.07.14 11:44:56 by GreatSharksays Reply

    Super Rugby player
     
  • @GreatSharksays (Comment 60) : Agreed.

    Being a sharks supporter is not for the faint hearted.
    And lets be honest we can t really defend the boys in any serious rugby discussion.

    If Super rugby is the topic of discussion around the fire we have to shut up cause even the down and out Lion supporters point out that they have a super rugby title and are therefore more successful than us. I won t even mention the haughty bulls…
    Change the topic to the Currie Cup, and wp supporters tells you they ve won it more times than the sharks ever will in my lifetime …

    So all we really have are the ” small victories ” here and there.

  • Comment 61, posted at 31.07.14 12:10:13 by Original Pierre Reply
    Author
    Original PierreSuper Rugby player
     
  • @GreatSharksays (Comment 60) : :lol:

  • Comment 62, posted at 31.07.14 12:32:47 by stevovo Reply

    stevovoVodacom Cup player
     
  • @pierre_mackie (Comment 53) : yes think they have a really chance to make the playoff again this year.

  • Comment 63, posted at 31.07.14 23:02:30 by JD Reply
    Author
    JDTeam captain
     
  • @Original Pierre (Comment 61) : that’s true but for me it’s still better than supporting any other team!!!! SHARKS4EVER!!!!!!!

  • Comment 64, posted at 31.07.14 23:06:47 by JD Reply
    Author
    JDTeam captain
     
  • @GreatSharksays (Comment 60) : maybe they should change their colours from Black and White to Black and Blue ;-)

  • Comment 65, posted at 31.07.14 23:08:02 by JD Reply
    Author
    JDTeam captain
     
  • Some punks from San Diego over Mozart :roll eyes:

    no wonder then.

    so goes the team, so goes the fans.

  • Comment 66, posted at 01.08.14 02:41:10 by fyndraai Reply

    fyndraaiSuper Rugby player
     
  • @fyndraai (Comment 66) : What you say is true; so sad, but still true. In fact, us Sharks fans are probably only one or two notches above the Bulls fans with their deification of Steve Hofmeyr :mrgreen:

  • Comment 67, posted at 01.08.14 05:03:41 by Culling Song Reply
    Author
    Culling SongSuper Rugby player
     
  • Am I the only one that is feels we are under strength for this Currie Cup….we are light light light…..especially at loose forward. How are our guys meant to keep up with the loose forwards from all the other unions?? Just feel we have lost the plot. Let’s hope our recruitment improves going forward.

  • Comment 68, posted at 01.08.14 09:42:18 by GreatSharksays Reply

    Super Rugby player
     
  • @GreatSharksays (Comment 68) : ja really hope they prove me wrong but this group does not really fill me with confidence! !!!

  • Comment 69, posted at 01.08.14 11:33:30 by JD Reply
    Author
    JDTeam captain
     
  • @Culling Song (Comment 67) : you say what?!?!?!?!

  • Comment 70, posted at 01.08.14 11:34:22 by JD Reply
    Author
    JDTeam captain
     
  • @Culling Song (Comment 67) :

    good one.

    But I think you are wrong about dudeism being a new religion. It sounds suspiciously like the ideas of Epicurus, circa 300BCE.

    Now there’s an idea…

    If the Sharks were genuinely classic…. as in Mozart ….or the original dudes….back in Greece……rather than the recent cheesy Californian imitations……

    even I, might become a Sharks fan then.

  • Comment 71, posted at 02.08.14 01:39:05 by fyndraai Reply

    fyndraaiSuper Rugby player
     
  • @fyndraai (Comment 71) : You’re absolutely right; it’s not really a new religion. It has it’s roots in Chinese Taoism, but has been influenced by Epicurus and Heraclitus, Buddhism and pre-ecclesiastic Christianity, to name a few. Really, if you want to be nitpicky, it’s actually just humanism dressed up in a threadbare bathrobe, smoking a joint and experiencing the occasional acid flashback.

    Which, getting back to my original point, means it’s still way more entertaining than the current state of Sharks rugby.

  • Comment 72, posted at 02.08.14 07:33:35 by Culling Song Reply
    Author
    Culling SongSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Culling Song (Comment 72) : :lol:

  • Comment 73, posted at 02.08.14 14:41:44 by Pokkel Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
    Team captain
     
  • @Culling Song (Comment 72) :

    The part I’m nitpicking about is whether it would be more entertaining than Mozart.

    I think not.

    Take that final match just played this morning. Was that how dudes and punks would play?
    No way.

  • Comment 74, posted at 02.08.14 19:51:10 by fyndraai Reply

    fyndraaiSuper Rugby player
     
  • As for life philosophies, Stoicism seems more useful to me.

  • Comment 75, posted at 02.08.14 19:53:48 by fyndraai Reply

    fyndraaiSuper Rugby player
     
  • I have so many thoughts in my head re: Kopdokter, game plans, execution, etc. I think I need to sort it all out in my head and then write an article!

  • Comment 76, posted at 04.08.14 11:49:57 by pastorshark Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
    pastorsharkTeam captain
     
  • In other good news: I see that at least I managed to win the Sharksworld Super Rugby Fantasy League pool. Woohoo!!

  • Comment 77, posted at 04.08.14 11:51:36 by pastorshark Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
    pastorsharkTeam captain
     

Add Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.