robdylan

Super Rugby 2015: Round 10


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 17 Apr 2015 at 09:43
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The Bully Boys head to Durban this week, where a wounded Sharks team lies in wait, seeking vengeance after what they considered an unfair reversal against these same foes back in round 3.

Sharks v Bulls (Saturday 17h05)

A lot has changed since that heady day at Loftus back in late February, though; remember, back then it was the Bulls who had lost their opening two matches and were said to be on the brink of a crisis. The Sharks, after their opening blip against the Cheetahs, had recovered to stuff the Lions at Kings Park and headed to Loftus high on confidence, with a big win firmly in their sights. A combination of rather wonky refereeing and even worse pillar defence saw them return with tails firmly between legs and nary even a losing bonus point. While the Bulls went on to win four of their next five fixtures, the Sharks have been to Hell and (almost back), plumbing the depths in their big loss at home to a Crusaders side that was beaten comfortably at Loftus just the week before. Coincidentally, it’s once again the home side in this contest starting at a third successive defeat.

That the Sharks were better against the Lions last week is not debatable. The team pulled together and delivered an encouraging attacking display, while the defensive issues have been identified and worked on during the week. The Bulls come into this match from a rather different place, having put up a big score against the admittedly rather awful Reds at Loftus. The visitors have made changes that strengthen their team on paper, but as we’ve seen, changes in key position like hooker and flyhalf tend to disrupt rhythm a little, at least initially, so we’ll need to see how long it takes for their man to find each other.

It’s certainly a strong pack on paper, though, but then again, so is the one the Sharks have named. I would back the Sharks to edge the forward contest, particularly in the set pieces where their scrum should dominate and their lineout hopefully prove slightly stronger.

It’s unlikely to be one-way traffic for either side up-front, though, meaning the halfbacks will have a fair bit of work to do. Fred Zeilinga missed out on a deserved Junior Bok call-up a few years back when a certain Handre Pollard was picked ahead of him straight out of school. I can’t think of a better opportunity for the quiet Glenwood lad to show Dawie Theron that he may have missed a trick. He’ll need to step up and deliver a far stronger performance than he did last week, though – one can’t see the Sharks winning unless Zeilinga plays out of his skin and controls the game.

I’m going with the heart here and backing the desperate Sharks to continue the upward curve. Sharks to win by 8 points at home.

Sharks: 15 Odwa Ndungane, 14 S’bura Sithole, 13 Waylon Murray, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Fred Zeilinga, 9 Cobus Reinach, 8 Renaldo Bothma, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Marco Wentzel (captain), 4 Mouritz Botha, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Franco Marais, 1 Beast Mtawarira.
Subs: 16 Monde Hadebe, 17 Thomas du Toit, 18 Lourens Adriaanse, 19 Giant Mtayanda, 20 Etienne Oosthuizen, 21 Conrad Hoffmann, 22 Lionel Cronje, 23 SP Marais

Bulls: 15 Jesse Kriel, 14 Francois Hougaard, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Rudy Paige, 8 Pierre Spies (captain), 7 Jacques du Plessis, 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4 Flip van der Merwe, 3 Marcel van der Merwe, 2 Adriaan Strauss, 1 Dean Greyling.
Replacements: 16 Callie Visagie, 17 Morné Mellett, 18 Trevor Nyakane, 19 Arno Botha, 20 Pieter Labuschagne, 21 Piet van Zyl, 22 Tian Schoeman, 23 Jurgen Visser.

My other picks are:
Chiefs by 3
Canes by 6
Highlanders by 9
Brumbies by 4
Stormers by 9
Cheetahs by 5



59 Comments

  • Pollard was still at school when he was picked for and played for the Junior Boks.

  • Comment 1, posted at 17.04.15 09:56:04 by The hound Reply
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  • @The hound (Comment 1) : I think I said that in the piece :)

  • Comment 2, posted at 17.04.15 10:02:14 by robdylan Reply
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  • Saders 3 – 13 Chiefs
    27mins

  • Comment 3, posted at 17.04.15 10:10:51 by JarsonX Reply
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  • no you said Pollard was picked ahead of him straight OUT of school.He was still at school.
    Pollard is quite remarkable playing S.A under 20 ,2012,2013, and 2014.

  • Comment 4, posted at 17.04.15 10:11:25 by The hound Reply
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  • Saders 6 – 13 Chiefs
    36mins

  • Comment 5, posted at 17.04.15 10:20:46 by JarsonX Reply
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  • Saders 6 – 18 Chiefs
    Halftime

  • Comment 6, posted at 17.04.15 10:30:45 by JarsonX Reply
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  • Saders 9 – 18 Chiefs
    43mins

  • Comment 7, posted at 17.04.15 10:40:02 by JarsonX Reply
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  • @The hound (Comment 4) : So regarding Meatloaf’s “Bat Out of Hell”, was said bat summoned from hell or on its way out already?

  • Comment 8, posted at 17.04.15 10:46:22 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @The hound (Comment 4) : well, I know what I meant :) And i guess you interpreted it differently.

  • Comment 9, posted at 17.04.15 10:56:53 by robdylan Reply
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  • This post is coming to you out of my outhouse.

  • Comment 10, posted at 17.04.15 10:59:55 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 8) :” Like a Bat out of hell,I’ll be gone in the morning” kinda like the way Sonny Bill is playing at the moment.

  • Comment 11, posted at 17.04.15 11:05:32 by The hound Reply
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  • You have got to ask yourself…how the heck did the Crusaders not only beat the Sharks, but completely humiliate them!

    What a 1D display of rugby from them (all in all a rather boring game of rugby)

  • Comment 12, posted at 17.04.15 11:19:40 by FireTheLooser Reply

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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 12) : They have been a real Jekyll and Hyde team this year.

  • Comment 13, posted at 17.04.15 11:23:34 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
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  • @The hound (Comment 11) : True :grin:

  • Comment 14, posted at 17.04.15 11:26:22 by vanmartin Reply
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  • Fulltime
    Saders 9 – 26 Chiefs

  • Comment 15, posted at 17.04.15 11:27:55 by JarsonX Reply
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  • Bye bye Grandslam Point

  • Comment 16, posted at 17.04.15 11:28:24 by JarsonX Reply
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  • @Salmonoid the Subtle (Comment 13) : Someone on twitter commented (a while back) that the Crusaders always look more ordinary when they’re reffed well. Obviously take that statement with a pinch of salt but perhaps there is some measure of truth there?

  • Comment 17, posted at 17.04.15 11:40:27 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 17) : Without trying to sound biased, I do think the saders get away with murder more often than other teams do. And speaking of refs, we have Peyper tomorrow…

  • Comment 18, posted at 17.04.15 12:34:46 by Another Nick Reply

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  • @vanmartin (Comment 17) : And will that apply to the all blacks as well?

  • Comment 19, posted at 17.04.15 12:37:48 by coolfusion Reply

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  • @coolfusion (Comment 19) : That’s a can of worms I don’t really feel like opening right this second. Let’s just say they walk a very fine offside line in my opinion ;-)

  • Comment 20, posted at 17.04.15 13:21:21 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 20) : Well considering that the allblacks have always been made up mostly of Crusaders players, by implication….I’ll open up those worms since I have always thought them masters at manipulating and stretching the laws way more than being absolutely superior in terms of raw talent. Of course their strategies have also been better than ours on many occasions but getting around the ref…well that some secret weapon we could sure use…

  • Comment 21, posted at 17.04.15 13:44:24 by coolfusion Reply

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  • I know of a South African team that also gets away with murder most of the time. And that is NOT the SHARKS!

  • Comment 22, posted at 17.04.15 13:57:52 by [email protected] Reply

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  • @[email protected] (Comment 22) : you can’t be talking about the Lions because apparently their “amazing” performance this year (mediocre by any other teams standards any other year) means that they can walk on water.

  • Comment 23, posted at 17.04.15 14:21:36 by coolfusion Reply

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  • @coolfusion (Comment 23) : @[email protected] (Comment 22) : I think she means a little more north… ;-)

  • Comment 24, posted at 17.04.15 15:11:55 by Southern_Shark Reply
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  • Well analyzed Rob. I agree re the forwards. I’m not a huge fan of rotating players between positions and for this game the lock and back row combos are new.

    Du plessis played lock the whole season until this saturday. Plus I feel Flip should have been given another week on the bench – if only to limit the cards in the first half.

    But I think the Bulls may have enough to scrape through a win. But expect my heart to stand still a couple of times on the way.

  • Comment 25, posted at 17.04.15 15:28:49 by Blue Centurion Reply

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  • @Blue Centurion (Comment 25) : Seeing as it is Kings Park, now notorious for yellows and reds, we should realistically bank on a red card for Greyling, and at least a yellow for Flip? :twisted:

  • Comment 26, posted at 17.04.15 15:42:49 by FireTheLooser Reply

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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 26) : Good point. Jannie dup is also due at least one yellow. Been rather quiet this season temperwise.

  • Comment 27, posted at 17.04.15 15:51:07 by Blue Centurion Reply

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  • @Blue Centurion (Comment 27) : Please don’t remind me… :|

  • Comment 28, posted at 17.04.15 15:57:06 by FireTheLooser Reply

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  • I’m NOT talking about the Lions – a bit north – YES

  • Comment 29, posted at 17.04.15 17:40:21 by [email protected] Reply

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  • @[email protected] (Comment 29) : Leopards? :mrgreen:

  • Comment 30, posted at 17.04.15 19:22:15 by Ben Reply
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  • Exactly the same picks as me…

  • Comment 31, posted at 17.04.15 19:32:16 by pastorshark Reply
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  • One thing concerns me deeply! Every prediction I’ve read on rugby sites has picked a Sharks win. Are they all trying to make our cause hopeless?! :mrgreen:

  • Comment 32, posted at 17.04.15 19:39:08 by pastorshark Reply
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  • @pastorshark (Comment 32) : nah, SARugbyMag has picked Bulls

  • Comment 33, posted at 17.04.15 19:49:54 by robdylan Reply
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  • @[email protected] (Comment 22) : Not sure what you mean. We are penalized to death at the scrums for a number of years now and Stegman is a penalty machine.

    Last week we couldn’t protect the ball on the gound before getting blown up – our main weakness last year.

    So if we get the odd forward pass in our favor, when you have Spies, Visser and JJ in your side, refs are just being merciful.

  • Comment 34, posted at 18.04.15 07:10:12 by Blue Centurion Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 33) : Ah…who’d have thought we’d be saved them! :mrgreen:

  • Comment 35, posted at 18.04.15 07:48:02 by pastorshark Reply
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  • @Blue :mrgreen: Centurion (Comment 34) : :mrgreen:

  • Comment 36, posted at 18.04.15 07:49:34 by pastorshark Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 12) : they exposed all the weakness in the Sharks game which is everything but also the golden players from the golden era of Saders rugby are aging and getting past it and the Saders are not eplacing them,reputation you know,hence the results,pretty much the same as the Sharks

  • Comment 37, posted at 18.04.15 09:13:10 by benji Reply
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  • Fulltime
    Hurricanes 24 -29 Waratahs

  • Comment 38, posted at 18.04.15 10:01:53 by JarsonX Reply
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  • Landers 17 – 0 Blues
    24mins

  • Comment 39, posted at 18.04.15 10:02:29 by JarsonX Reply
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  • Seriously worried about Peyper as the Ref today.Don’t think he has the stature or the intelligence to handle this game.
    We need the clear head and calm control of Craig Joubert.
    Bulls going to continue their antagonistic tactics of the first game,and Gold has already made a public statement that the Sharks will not retaliate.
    Pretty stupid statement to make,as this is rugby and not tiddlywinks as Tanna would say.
    They will just carry on stirring and eventually a short fuse will be exposed ,because this is rugby and these are rugby players.
    What is needed is a 99 mentality so that the first time Flippie or Greyling crosses the line,the whole team takes him out.99 sentiment is you can’t card the whole team.
    Still think Peyper is not up to this game.

  • Comment 40, posted at 18.04.15 10:20:35 by The hound Reply
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  • Halftime
    Highlanders 24 – 0 Blues

  • Comment 41, posted at 18.04.15 10:22:49 by JarsonX Reply
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  • @The hound (Comment 40) : I think the ref is the last thing we should be worried about.

  • Comment 42, posted at 18.04.15 10:26:41 by Ben Reply
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  • @Ben (Comment 42) : I think the ref could be the most important person in this game,open playing field 15 against 15 for the entire game,its ours.

  • Comment 43, posted at 18.04.15 10:36:09 by The hound Reply
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  • @The hound (Comment 43) : The most important people in this game are the 23 players wearing Sharks jerseys.

  • Comment 44, posted at 18.04.15 10:40:49 by Ben Reply
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  • Highlanders 27 – 10 Blues

    52 minutes.

  • Comment 45, posted at 18.04.15 10:42:10 by Ben Reply
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  • Highlanders 27 – 17 Blues

    58 minutes.

  • Comment 46, posted at 18.04.15 10:51:07 by Ben Reply
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  • Good fightback from the Blues

  • Comment 47, posted at 18.04.15 10:51:57 by JarsonX Reply
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  • Highlanders 30 – 17 Blues

    65 minutes.

  • Comment 48, posted at 18.04.15 10:59:34 by Ben Reply
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  • Highlanders 30 – 24 Blues

    78 minutes.

  • Comment 49, posted at 18.04.15 11:14:35 by Ben Reply
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  • FULL TIME

    HIGHLANDERS 30 – 24 BLUES

  • Comment 50, posted at 18.04.15 11:17:28 by Ben Reply
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  • Half Time

    Brumbies 5 – 13 Rebels

  • Comment 51, posted at 18.04.15 12:25:50 by Ben Reply
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  • FULL TIME

    BRUMBIES 8 – 13 REBELS

  • Comment 52, posted at 18.04.15 13:23:27 by Ben Reply
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  • Force 3 – 10 Stormers

    10 minutes.

  • Comment 53, posted at 18.04.15 13:55:08 by Ben Reply
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  • Force 6 – 10 Stormers

    37 minutes.

  • Comment 54, posted at 18.04.15 14:25:36 by Ben Reply
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  • Burger’s link play has been quite impressive so far. He has slowed down the ball at least once at second receiver but has otherwise contributed admirably

  • Comment 55, posted at 18.04.15 14:26:33 by vanmartin Reply
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  • Half Time

    Force 6 – 10 Stormers

  • Comment 56, posted at 18.04.15 14:29:39 by Ben Reply
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  • Force 6 – 13 Stormers

    75 minutes.

  • Comment 57, posted at 18.04.15 15:21:22 by Ben Reply
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  • FULL TIME

    WESTERN FORCE 6 – 13 STORMERS

  • Comment 58, posted at 18.04.15 15:31:46 by Ben Reply
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  • ROUND 10 RESULTS

    CRUSADERS 9 – 26 CHIEFS

    HURRICANES 24 – 29 WARATAHS

    HIGHLANDERS 30 – 24 BLUES

    BRUMBIES 8 – 13 REBELS

    WESTERN FORCE 6 – 13 STORMERS

    SHARKS 10 – 17 BULLS

    CHEETAHS 17 – 18 REDS

  • Comment 59, posted at 18.04.15 21:08:40 by Ben Reply
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