robdylan

Lions batter Sharks in one-sided affair


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Lions, Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 9 Apr 2016 at 23:39
Tagged with : , , , , , , ,

The Lions scored two tries to zero in a dominant victory over the Sharks at Kings Park on Saturday; the 24-9 win for the visitors saw them leapfrog their hosts at the top of the Africa 2 conference in Super Rugby and Johan Ackermann’s side must now be favourites for the conference title.

Gary Gold’s men came out like they meant business, with the opening five minutes seeing no fewer than three near try-scoring opportunities go a-begging, mostly due to good Lions defence. That pressure was to be short lived, however, as the Lions built on a dominant scrum platform to gain the ascendency, with Elton Jantjies’ unerring tactical boot and sound game management ensuring that the visitors stayed on the front foot. With referee Angus Gardner blowing all of the early calls the Lions’ way, it wasn’t long before that pressure turned into points. Jantjies struck a penalty, before lock Andries Ferreira burrowed over for the side’s first try on the 14-minute mark. The conversion and a further penalty saw the visitors suddenly 13 points ahead and with the Sharks committing the most basic of errors whenever they did manage to get hands on the ball, the momentum simply never swung back.

Joe Pietersen – who had an afternoon he’d want to forget – did manage a penalty half an hour in, but that respite was to be brief, as Lionel Mapoe scored at the other end just five minutes later to stretch the lead again. It was perhaps telling that the Sharks opted to again take the three when awarded a rare penalty on the half-time hooter; one would have thought that a line-out drive would have been a better option at 15 points down, but on a day when the Lions pack had the clear upper-hand, even this was not to be risked.

That the visitors battled to build on their 18-6 half-time lead was perhaps a credit to the Sharks – although one did have to look hard for any positives if you were a fans of the black and white on Saturday. Pietersen struck another penalty not long after the resumption, but Jantjies cancelled that out and added another later on to make the result safe. The Sharks defended valiantly throughout that second period and – perhaps tellingly – prevented the Lions from scoring a bonus point try. There was also an exciting almost-genesis of their thus-far stillborn attacking game when Pietersen was finally yanked in favour of Garth April; the young pivot attacked the line with bravery and brought a little panache and inventiveness to a back division that had appeared rather staid up to that point.

Other than that briefest of of bright lights, there was little to shout about for the Sharks and their fans and they will leave for their tour battered and bruised – but under no illusions as to just how much work they still have to do if they’re to become Super Rugby title contenders.

Sharks (9): Penalties Joe Pietersen (3)
Lions (24): Tries Andries Ferreira, Lionel Mapoe. Conversion Elton Jantjies. Penalties Jantjies (4).



103 Comments

  • Spot on summation.
    Coenie, Reinach, Joe and Esterhuizen had games they would prefer to forget.
    Willie at least tried to spark something.
    Pity about Marcel, I hope he isn’t too seriously injured.

  • Comment 1, posted at 10.04.16 00:01:31 by nortie Reply
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  • @nortie (Comment 1) : It’s bad, I’m afraid.

  • Comment 2, posted at 10.04.16 00:05:54 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 2) :
    Damn, that’s not good.
    He was really playing some great rugby, huge loss for the Sharks and the Boks if he is out for a long time

  • Comment 3, posted at 10.04.16 00:12:00 by nortie Reply

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  • I must add, and this is not a critisism, Beast needs to taper down when it comes to the refs.
    The first few games of the season he seemed to have a good rapport with the refs, today he seemed to lose it at times.
    Coupled with the Gold incident, a team can very easily get the “wrong” reputation. We all know the refs are a laager minded group, they look out for each other.
    The Kiwis had already started their mind games with some reports about the Gold sanction, they will continue to harp on it when the Sharks reach their shores, anything to win the mind games, you don’t need them to start questioning your captain’s backchat, whether right or wrong, as disrespect as well.
    Having said that, it’s not just Beast, too many players lately are starting to act like soccer players and challenge calls too easily.
    The advent of the big screen and replays have opened up a can of worms IMO. Players demand replays and question almost every second call lately.

  • Comment 4, posted at 10.04.16 00:21:23 by nortie Reply

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  • Better team won. Not sure about the ref. He didn’t help matters, but the Lions certainly out muscled us and any help they did get from the ref, I really don’t think they actually needed.

  • Comment 5, posted at 10.04.16 00:22:21 by Letgo Reply
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  • @nortie (Comment 4) : The same problem I picked up with beast tonight, it seemed as thought he was panicky in trying to get his message across to the ref, and I do think that this started to irritate the ref, and that is why he told him not now not now, at the end of the game, I just hope that you guys can smack them next weekend to keep us close to them on the log now

  • Comment 6, posted at 10.04.16 00:37:53 by Henkb Reply
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  • @Henkb (Comment 6) :
    i hope we can, huge game for us. Bulls are breathing down our necks, and the win from the Reds today notwithstanding, they should beat the Reds at Loftus.
    So we can’t afford a loss, they will go past us.

  • Comment 7, posted at 10.04.16 00:53:42 by nortie Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 2) : would be a pity if he’s out for a long time as he’s in really good form.

  • Comment 8, posted at 10.04.16 01:12:01 by JD Reply
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  • To me Coenie should take a backseat to Adriaanse. Keegan should probably be moved to 8 and the dupreez brothers on flanks. I think April held up very nicely under pressure and hope to see him in more often.

  • Comment 9, posted at 10.04.16 09:10:57 by coolfusion Reply

    coolfusionSuper Rugby player
     
  • @coolfusion (Comment 9) : I would leave Keegan at open side. He did manage to slow down some Lions ball.

  • Comment 10, posted at 10.04.16 11:19:43 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • Maybe I am alone on this, but I am not disheartened by the game.

    Firstly, hats off to the Lions. Its great to see a well-coached SA team that actually play a flowing style of balanced rugby. They dont have too many world-class teams, but the results speak for themselves, and they show that SA players certainly have the “talent” to play balanced rugby.

    With regard to the Sharks, we really struggled with Joe P stalling the game again, while the scrums were awfully reffed – surely you smell a rat when the scrum collapses and the tighthead’s legs are facing the touchline? :roll:

    What I saw was that especially in the second half we played some good attacking rugby, but the twin plagues of young teams dragged us down – discipline and over-eagerness (leading to handling errors and the likes). But all those who said they cared more about the manner of play than the result should be crowing right now.

    I thought Beast did the right thing in the circumstances; he needed to make the ref understand that the scrums were a mess. Emotion is not always a bad thing. The ref certainly showed his weakness when he also didnt want to acknowledge that he was wrong on the early tackle on Willie.

    Indicative of the dichotomy for me was Esterhuizen. He made far too many handling errors, but he defended very well and he really got himself into some good positions and ran good lines – it bodes well for the future. I was also very impressed with the Willie/ April play at 10 – such a revelation with regard to how we can play. The Twins also won lots of ball at the breakdown, despite some other errors – again, an area that we did not really see them shine in before.

    So, while I still expect lean pickings on this tour, I am fully on board with what the coaches and players are trying to do, and I can see some of the work starting to glimpse through the grey.

  • Comment 11, posted at 10.04.16 12:14:27 by Big Fish Reply
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  • @Bokhoring (Comment 10) :
    I thought he was excellent – as good as 4/ 5 seasons ago.

  • Comment 12, posted at 10.04.16 12:14:54 by Big Fish Reply
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  • @Big Fish (Comment 11) :I agree with a lot of what you said,if only Pat was steering this ship.
    I cannot for the life of me understand Gold’s reluctance to get Claassens on the field for longer than 5 minutes.
    We have been waiting for the second coming of Reinarch the whole seasoned trust it ain’t going to come.

  • Comment 13, posted at 10.04.16 12:22:06 by The hound Reply
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  • @Big Fish (Comment 11) : Agreed on pretty much everything. One other thing I’d like to hear your thoughts on is the reffing of the offside line. I saw a number of instances where it wasn’t well watched and the Lions (to their credit) made wonderful use of it. A lot of the Sharks momentum was halted or reversed because the Lions seems to pushing the offside boundaries after each phase. To a lesser degree the same was true at our offensive rucks, a lot of ball seemed to be slowed down there. Once again credit must go to the Lions though for playing to the ref. They’re a smart team.

  • Comment 14, posted at 10.04.16 12:40:44 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @The hound (Comment 13) :

    I am far from a Reinach hater, but despite him having a better game, I also still don’t get why he is starting. Our young backline is crying out for better direction at half back.

    @vanmartin (Comment 14) :
    Must be honest; didn’t notice it. Wouldn’t be surprised though – well-coached teams push the boundaries. For example, it’s no coincidence that the Lions have 2 short props alongside a tall hooker. Redelinghuis is a good prop – not a great one, but they are well-coached in the dark arts.

    Anyway, I think one reason they seemed to catch us on our heels on our attack was pure lack of variation and static running. Once April and Willie started running the show they made metres at first receiver – and I think one reason is that both tend to receive the ball at pace and run at the gap with the ball in both hands.

    I appreciate that Joe is taking on a tough gig, but I imagine it’s only goal kicking that’s keeping him there. Maybe better to switch him and Willie in the starting line up.

  • Comment 15, posted at 10.04.16 14:13:36 by Big Fish Reply
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  • @Big Fish (Comment 15) : would like for a player like rhyno smith to be added to the squad.brings goalkicking ability and attacking skills.tackles.could perhaps be an option on the wing?dont think there must be “wholesale changes”,though.jpp tried to get involved.mvovo too looked dangerous.handling errors disrupted any rhythm on attack.

  • Comment 16, posted at 10.04.16 14:45:02 by 50shadesofshark Reply

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  • @Big Fish (Comment 11) :

    I agree regarding Beast. His argument with the ref did not look good, but from then on, the scrum rulings changed to favor the Sharks a bit.

    But to me, as a neutral Saffa, the game was a bit painful to watch. Both teams were poor and it remains to be seen whether the Lions brand of play can be effective against the better Kiwi or Aussie sides. I think not.

  • Comment 17, posted at 10.04.16 14:47:29 by fyndraai Reply
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  • @fyndraai (Comment 17) :
    We had an interesting discussion a few weeks ago regarding talent versus gameplan. I still feel that we under-utilise and under-sell our own talent by playing a style of rugby which generally forces players to play static, predictable rugby.

    I agree that the Lions didn’t exactly shine, but what they do well is switch pretty seamlessly from attack to defence or conservative to expansive depending on the situation.

    Not too many world-class players in that team – in my opinion it’s evidence of the fact that even the average SA player is capable of playing a more dynamic game.

  • Comment 18, posted at 10.04.16 14:57:04 by Big Fish Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 14) : I noticed that.

  • Comment 19, posted at 10.04.16 14:59:09 by robdylan Reply
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  • Back in 2007 the sharks lost at home to the brumbies 21-10.first ever home defeat to the brumbies.only a late try made the scoreline look a bit respectable.was a “flat” performance that day.did not need to drop the whole team after that result to make the final.need to keep a level-head.

  • Comment 20, posted at 10.04.16 15:02:01 by 50shadesofshark Reply

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  • @Big Fish (Comment 18) :

    It will be interesting to see. Now that the Bulls are committed to more running and the Stormers are paying lip service to it also. If it works for the Bulls, I may even become an advocate. :)

    I think a large part of the difference between these Lions and the shamble Lions of a few years ago is the scrum (and how it’s now refereed). Being able to score points off of your own mistakes is a bit of a blight on rugby but a huge advantage for the team with the dominant scrum.

  • Comment 21, posted at 10.04.16 17:35:14 by fyndraai Reply
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  • When it comes to scrums, I think most people pay too much attention to the front rows. Look at the Bulls yesterday. They had the dominant scrum until they lost a lock and then they were lucky not to concede a penalty try. The modern scrum is an eight man play. From this image taken just before the ball went into the 1st scrum one can see that the Lions flank is in a position to support his prop and the Sharks flank is not.

    http://imgur.com/msgC66I

  • Comment 22, posted at 10.04.16 17:44:09 by fyndraai Reply
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  • @Big Fish (Comment 15) : Sharks have a couple of issues (scrums, protecting ball in contact, cleaning and presentation at rucks, handling under pressure, decision making). I believe many of these you can improve by working on them in practice sessions, but something like improving decision making comes with experience by making decisions under match conditions. The Lions players are a lot further than the Sharks down that path, e.g. Lions prop with only Kriel next to him realises Kriel is outnumbered and rather cuts back in field towards his support and retains the ball. Most Sharks back line players would have passed to Kriel and the team would have lost the possession.

    I am heartened by the intent shown by the Sharks in this game, and the difference April made with Willie suddenly also involved.

    The team needs to keep this intent (obviously kick when appropriate) to improve – not go back to kick, hope and defend rugby though.

  • Comment 23, posted at 10.04.16 21:39:40 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • I think the lack of calmness coming from the top is a real problem. The team seems to be getting over tense which is leading to poor decision-making and lack of confidence to express themselves. Gold’s blow up last weekend could be taken as very indicative. It contrasts with Ackermann’s cool but tough demeanour.

  • Comment 24, posted at 11.04.16 07:39:24 by MikeSebMatt Reply

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  • Just a few thoughts from watching live…the sharks had a really bad day at the office, i cant think of too much they got right apart from a semi decent defense in 2nd half. The players looked jaded and lethargic. The Lions players were a lot hungrier and explosive. On the technical side…our scrums are a problem-its a technique issue. Lineouts were pretty good. Sharks biggest problem is how many players we require to secure our own ball…at one stage we needed about 6 players when only 2 lions players were competing, and they only needed 1 or 2 to secure their ball- and we wonder why their attack is so much better. Then our handling is terrible…Esterhuizen is a problem at 12- big guy but his hands are shocking and nothing happens outside of him because of it. Get Heimar Williams at 12 and watch things change. Same at 10…Joe Pieterson is a great kicker but he is a 15 playing 10 and doesnt have any deception in his running or passing. April made a big difference and combined well in tandem with Willie…if only we could create better ball from the rucks.

  • Comment 25, posted at 11.04.16 08:13:24 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @The hound (Comment 13) : GO look at Reinach’s first pass, that pretty much sums up the type of no9 we are using.

  • Comment 26, posted at 11.04.16 08:28:11 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • Interesting that i dont think anyone has yet mentioned how the Sharks tried to play a much more ball in hand game with very little kicking….
    And well we all saw how well that worked out…

  • Comment 27, posted at 11.04.16 08:30:13 by SheldonK Reply

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  • The problem was that there was no plan on attack. Forwards and backs were just bundled up on attack. If a forward does find himself in the backline on attack, he must drop back to just behind the backs in order to be there in support or to be ready to secure the ball once the back gets tackled, no trying to be a centre. The only two forwards we have had in the past few years that does that was Botes and Keegan.

  • Comment 28, posted at 11.04.16 08:38:47 by KingRiaan Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 27) : Joe kicking away vital possession doesn’t really count as more ball in hand play. April definitely made a huge difference to the manner in which the backline got the “whip” going.

  • Comment 29, posted at 11.04.16 08:41:07 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 27) : @Uli Boelie (Comment 29) : FYI

    Sharks vs Lions Stats

    115 Carries 92
    12 Clean breaks 6
    20 Defenders beaten 19
    421 Metres run 255
    8 Offloads 5
    144 Passes 134
    112 Tackles Made 137
    19 Missed Tackles 20
    18 Kicks from Hand 24
    11 Kicks caught 14

    The Sharks ran more, passed more, tackled less and kicked less than the Lions.

    The Errors is the one area where it went south

    26 Handling Errors 15
    13 Penalties conceded 6

  • Comment 30, posted at 11.04.16 08:44:55 by Baylion Reply

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  • @Baylion (Comment 30) :
    Thanks for sharing that. Most of the guys seem too bummed by the result to objectively note what actually happened in the game.

    The Lions were just more clinical – the sign of a well-coached and stable team. The Sharks will get there.

  • Comment 31, posted at 11.04.16 08:55:41 by Big Fish Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 29) : April did make a difference but Joe didnt kick much at all unless he was clearing the lines. The Sharks clearly played more ball in hand rugby on Saturday than they have since prob the French tour. The difference April made was that he ran different angles at the line and was a bit deceptive with his passing. Although that didnt really matter as Esterhuizen still kept dropping the ball or dying with it in contact. When April came on he and Willie interchanged a lot but when Pieterson was on that never happened.

  • Comment 32, posted at 11.04.16 08:56:03 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @Baylion (Comment 30) : Handling errors and the resultant penalties is what cost the Sharks.

  • Comment 33, posted at 11.04.16 08:56:45 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 33) : We lost that game in the scrums IMO, handling errors second.

  • Comment 34, posted at 11.04.16 09:03:36 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • Every week Gary Gold talks about the game plan not making it to the field. This week again

    “It was also not part of the game plan to attack from 60 metres out. Yes, we wanted to have a more ball in hand approach but you also have to be in the right areas of the field to attack. We played into the hands of the Lions at times.”

  • Comment 35, posted at 11.04.16 09:03:36 by Baylion Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 32) : Sure, JW was not all wrong wanting him to rather focus on flank. We have the best back 3 in the country and we unable to unleash them….our centres is a big issue.

  • Comment 36, posted at 11.04.16 09:06:10 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @Bokhoring (Comment 34) : Sharks caught the Lions unaware and almost scored – decision making (Marcel and Willie) letting us down, and then handling. No issue – still the Lions defending a scrum 5m from their try line. Lions milk the penalty and get out of trouble plus having the line out.

    Another chance with a scrum (our ball) near the Lions 22. For some reason no-one hooks the ball (probably due to Lions pressure). Reinach decides to dig the ball out from under the locks’ feet – another penalty to the Lions.

    For me the priority should be to fix the scrums once and for all. It does not matter what game you play (kick and defend / more ball in hand), your set pieces should at least be able to secure your own ball. Kiwi teams when struggling in the scrums hook the ball very quickly and often negate a stronger scrum.

  • Comment 37, posted at 11.04.16 09:13:17 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 36) : I think he does play like a flank yes…but he could be a good wing in my opinion as well. Sharks are lacking distribution and deception at 10/12. And April/Williams combo would rectify that. Outside of them i dont see anyone else in the Sharks setup barring real youngsters.

  • Comment 38, posted at 11.04.16 09:13:37 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 27) : handling errors did not help either.way too many to build any pressure on the lions defence.though,the sharks should have had a penalty early in the 2nd half,when a lions players lifted mvovo up off his feet in the ruck about 10m out from the line

  • Comment 39, posted at 11.04.16 09:13:44 by 50shadesofshark Reply

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  • @Bokhoring (Comment 34) : Id say handling errors first as thats what led to all those scrums at which we then conceded penalties…

  • Comment 40, posted at 11.04.16 09:14:25 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @Bokhoring (Comment 34) : yes,the scrum penalties put the team on the back foot on the score board,and the handling errors stopped the attack play to erase the deficit.

  • Comment 41, posted at 11.04.16 09:17:34 by 50shadesofshark Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 40) : The Crusaders (and Lions to a lesser extent) could get away with handling errors, as they would just regain the ball at the next scrum.

    The handling errors is an issue for sure, but for an SA team that is usually takes a lot longer to correct. A creaky scrum should be quicker for an SA team to fix.

  • Comment 42, posted at 11.04.16 09:18:31 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • @Bokhoring (Comment 37) : Easy, just start Adriaanse in place of Coenie, drop Coenie to the bench to cover loosehead, and bring Thomas on the bench to cover 3. Coenie is a useless 3, but a pretty good loosehead.

  • Comment 43, posted at 11.04.16 09:18:42 by KingRiaan Reply

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  • @KingRiaan (Comment 43) : Agreed 100%

  • Comment 44, posted at 11.04.16 09:19:53 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • @Bokhoring (Comment 37) : how “straight” is the scrum put-in by the kiwi teams in those instances?they always seem to be a bit more “street savvy” than sa teams.

  • Comment 45, posted at 11.04.16 09:22:49 by 50shadesofshark Reply

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  • @KingRiaan (Comment 43) : yes.beast is also clocking up way too many minutes due to his captaincy responsibilities.

  • Comment 46, posted at 11.04.16 09:24:36 by 50shadesofshark Reply

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  • @50shadesofshark (Comment 45) : They are masters at getting every extra inch out of the ref’s interpretation.

  • Comment 47, posted at 11.04.16 09:27:40 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • What is interesting is that the Bulls are now leading the Lions on log points after 6 games (although Lions top the second conference), and only 4 behind the Stormers.

  • Comment 48, posted at 11.04.16 09:36:01 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • @Bokhoring (Comment 48) : where is the lions vs bulls game?

  • Comment 49, posted at 11.04.16 09:43:03 by 50shadesofshark Reply

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  • Jeeper but the Lions were poor on the weekend.

  • Comment 50, posted at 11.04.16 09:48:48 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
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  • @50shadesofshark (Comment 49) : Loftus, although that result will matter more for Lions i.t.o. staying ahead of the Sharks (home QF), and catching up with the Stormers (home semi).

  • Comment 51, posted at 11.04.16 09:50:10 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • @KingRiaan (Comment 43) : not sure Thomas will be better at 3?! Should start with Adriaanse and then Coenie can replace him with 20 odd min to go.

  • Comment 52, posted at 11.04.16 11:47:37 by JD Reply
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  • We have to start Adriaanse from here on. But refs also need to improve their scrum interpretation.

    Handling and discipline will improve with time on the field – it’s really just a symptom of this young team.

    Personally I would consider switching Joe and Willie from here on. Other than that and the props, I would also start Classens with no other changes.

  • Comment 53, posted at 11.04.16 11:57:12 by Big Fish Reply
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  • Interesting not much mention has been made of the Sharks running the ball a lot more on Saturday than they did vs the Crusaders….perhaps falling into the trap of trying to play like the Lions and them being better at it. People have asked for a more ball in hand approach and have said they dont mind losing if thats the case…well that happened. If you do keep the ball in hand more you do become susceptible to handling errors and the resultant scrum penalties killed the sharks. Also interesting to note that the attack or lack thereof is directed at Gold yet Rob DuPreez was signed as attack coach and no mention made of him. Personally i thought the Sharks intent was a lot better but execution was a lot worse than previous weeks.

  • Comment 54, posted at 11.04.16 12:00:53 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 54) : the attacking intent was there,yes,but unfortunately so too were the handling errors.it was just “that kind of game”.the injury to marcell had me wondering: haven’t i seen all this before ending with something like this?nothing went right for the sharks on the day.handling,kicking.or the ref’s scrum’s interpretation.

  • Comment 55, posted at 11.04.16 12:21:34 by 50shadesofshark Reply

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  • @50shadesofshark (Comment 55) : Yeh thats pretty much my thoughts…the intent was there but execution was way off. I also couldnt help thinking the whole game how lethargic the players looked as well.

  • Comment 56, posted at 11.04.16 12:26:33 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @50shadesofshark (Comment 55) : @SheldonK (Comment 56) : it almost seems to me as if the team that started the year with a jump in their step a smile on their face transformed into this lethargic unhappy 2015 clones!?

  • Comment 57, posted at 11.04.16 12:41:32 by JD Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 57) : Fitness? Tiredness? Motivation?

  • Comment 58, posted at 11.04.16 12:43:17 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 58) : no idea wish I knew?!

  • Comment 59, posted at 11.04.16 12:50:01 by JD Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 59) : Its probably a combination of all 3

  • Comment 60, posted at 11.04.16 12:53:30 by SheldonK Reply

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  • We played badly. When we had the ball to attack there didn’t seem to be any plans. Joe had a shocker, the worst I’ve seen of him. I’d start the next game with April for sure. Esterhuizen should have realised pretty fast that the lions targeted the ball when he had it, seeing as he tried to run over everyone in an upright position with the ball not protected sufficiently. He should have changed his gameplan to at least drop the shoulder with the ball in the other hand. The scrums were ridiculous, firstly Coenie folding like a limp pretzel, and then the ref giving them penalty after penalty even though some of those calls were 100% wrong. Coenie got bossed, the lions started to scrum in, and the ref blew us up. This really took the wind out of our players sails, and that’s why Beast really lost it and the players heads started to droop. Pretty sure they knew by the 30th minute the game was lost, seeing as the lions could play ball on the ground, stand waaay offside and do what they want in the scrums with impunity. And then our best fetcher and to the ball player got injured which didn’t help at all. That’s why we couldn’t build momentum, and when the guys started chasing the game in desperation we saw crap passes and handling errors.

    It was awful to watch, but at least it’s over.

  • Comment 61, posted at 11.04.16 13:22:10 by Dragnipur Reply
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  • @Dragnipur (Comment 61) : very spot-on .

  • Comment 62, posted at 11.04.16 13:51:05 by 50shadesofshark Reply

    Team captain
     
  • @SheldonK (Comment 60) : must say the players looks fit it just seems as if they lost confidence and/or motivation. The enjoyment that they seemed to have at the start of the season seems gone.

  • Comment 63, posted at 11.04.16 14:24:56 by JD Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 63) : That lethargic look often is a result of tiredness or lack of motivation.

  • Comment 64, posted at 11.04.16 14:29:16 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 64) : somehow I think something is wrong mentally instead of fiscally.

  • Comment 65, posted at 11.04.16 14:58:52 by JD Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 57) : @SheldonK (Comment 58) : So what I hear you guys saying is…now the boys need to start showing character… :grin:

  • Comment 66, posted at 11.04.16 17:29:00 by pastorshark Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 25) : sorry bru but I’m defending esterhuizen here , yes his handling was bad ,but the problem is 10 , Apart from those silly handling errors he is my star backline player this season as I don’t only look at his ability when he has the ball but the difference he makes of the ball , when he cleans rucks he totally dominates and tend to get the turnover plus most of his tackles are offensive tackles . If he gets his hands right which he should , he ads value on attack (any coach will tell you how valuable go forward ball is ) .Heimar is a good player but not better as AE imo

  • Comment 67, posted at 11.04.16 17:35:06 by ettas Reply

    ettasUnder 21 player
     
  • @pastorshark (Comment 66) : hahaha ja exactly!!!

  • Comment 68, posted at 11.04.16 19:31:21 by JD Reply
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  • @ettas (Comment 67) : not saying Andre is a bad player. I just think it’s time to change a bit and see what other players can bring. But anyway seemingly Gold & co does not share my view as Andre is the only pure 12 on tour.

  • Comment 69, posted at 11.04.16 19:35:32 by JD Reply
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  • @ettas (Comment 67) :
    I fully agree. I think he’s a special talent.

    People forget he is just 20. The veterans of SW will tell you how everyone and their dog called for JP (amongst others) to be dropped at that age for similar kinds of mistakes.

  • Comment 70, posted at 11.04.16 20:01:19 by Big Fish Reply
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  • @Big Fish (Comment 70) : 22… :grin: but your point is very valid…there is just not patience in the world anymore… :grin:

  • Comment 71, posted at 11.04.16 20:07:13 by pastorshark Reply
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  • IMO the Lions were just really good from the moment they superbly defended an almost certain try. Once got some momentum and never let it up throughout the match. Every set piece, ruck, or play we tried they were all over us like a rash. I thought they pushed the offside boundaries a bit far but nevertheless it worked. There was obviously something not right in the scrums for Beast to get that frustrated. I don’t fully understand scrums so hoping someone can provide some expert opinion on that… Hint hint dancing bear…

    When you’re under that much pressure and losing your set pieces mistakes are going to happen.

    Also Lions broke so much of any small momentum we did have by tackling to hold the player up. Even if it let us get a yard extra ball coming out was slow or ended in a lions scrum which too often ended in a penalty.

  • Comment 72, posted at 11.04.16 20:25:54 by gregkaos Reply
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  • @pastorshark (Comment 71) :
    Thanks. :wink:

    I agree. He’s a raw talent taking his first steps at this level; let’s give him a chance to settle.

    It goes for the whole team really. I remember talented players like Quade Cooper, Beale, O’Connor and Frans Steyn often making silly errors as youngsters. Cooper especially was often ridiculed for his error rate. Who would turn any of them away now? Patience is needed.

  • Comment 73, posted at 11.04.16 20:27:46 by Big Fish Reply
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  • @Big Fish (Comment 73) : Every time someone says “patience” I feel guilty that I haven’t yet finished my promised article! Just super hectic here right now…I’ll get it done…

  • Comment 74, posted at 11.04.16 20:34:16 by pastorshark Reply
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  • @pastorshark (Comment 74) :
    I guess us eager readers must just show a bit of… patience…

  • Comment 75, posted at 11.04.16 20:44:49 by Big Fish Reply
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  • @pastorshark (Comment 74) : @Big Fish (Comment 75) : ja well I quess we really have no other option than to wait patiently for your article! ;-P

  • Comment 76, posted at 11.04.16 21:04:43 by JD Reply
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  • @Big Fish (Comment 75) : @JD (Comment 76) : :mrgreen:

  • Comment 77, posted at 11.04.16 21:55:02 by pastorshark Reply
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  • @pastorshark (Comment 77) : it’s OK Pastor we know in your business you don’t always have control over your schedule. Best of of luck.

  • Comment 78, posted at 11.04.16 22:43:54 by JD Reply
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  • @ettas (Comment 67) : I have no problem with anyone defending a player as everyone has different opinions. And i cannot argue with all those points you have raised about Esterhuizen…BUT what you have described is a flank not a centre….just a thought

  • Comment 79, posted at 12.04.16 08:21:12 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @SheldonK (Comment 79) : Is that not what most SA coaches want from their centres – flanks who operate in the backline?

  • Comment 80, posted at 12.04.16 08:39:33 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • @ettas (Comment 67) : @SheldonK (Comment 79) : @Bokhoring (Comment 80) : rather than argue who is the better player,should we not ask: is the choice of no12 an indication of preferred style of play?so it is about which player at no12 suits the style the best?

  • Comment 81, posted at 12.04.16 08:47:10 by 50shadesofshark Reply

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  • Would like to see ae develop a seriously strong hand-off to go with his size.

  • Comment 82, posted at 12.04.16 08:52:17 by 50shadesofshark Reply

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  • @Bokhoring (Comment 80) : And then we wonder why we show no creative attacking ability…the players we pick suit a defensive approach.

  • Comment 83, posted at 12.04.16 09:04:01 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @50shadesofshark (Comment 81) : i kinda answered that in my other comment but yes you are right. In Sa we seem to love a 12 that has a flanks attributes which serves a defensive gameplan very well. But then when we try play a ball in hand, attacking gameplan we wonder why we come up short…

  • Comment 84, posted at 12.04.16 09:07:13 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @gregkaos (Comment 72) : this post needs more love. Thanks for the insight!

  • Comment 85, posted at 12.04.16 09:29:30 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 79) : @Bokhoring (Comment 80) : @50shadesofshark (Comment 81) : Andre can be a very good 12 but he needs to work on distribution skill. For me personally he takes to much contact whereas he could draw and pass thus opening space for runners next to him.

  • Comment 86, posted at 12.04.16 09:40:55 by JD Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 85) : Yeh i agree…good summary

  • Comment 87, posted at 12.04.16 09:40:57 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @JD (Comment 86) : The thing is he is picked because he tackles well, cleans rucks, and crashes over the advantage line. He isnt picked for his deceptive distribution etc…

  • Comment 88, posted at 12.04.16 09:42:16 by SheldonK Reply

    SheldonKAssistant coach
     
  • @JD (Comment 86) : Andre can become devastating, he just needs to be coached to run with the ball in two hands, and to get his arms out of the tackle, then with someone like Keegan or Paul running on his shoulder to grab the pop pass. Because Andre will almost always draw at least two defenders, which creates holes in the defensive line, but he needs to be coached better. The Sharks needs a skills coach, someone whose job it is to only coach the players skills. These days you can’t leave that to just the 3 main coaches as their plates are already full up, same reason why you need expert dedicated coaching for the lineouts, scrums, defense and fitness.

  • Comment 89, posted at 12.04.16 09:46:08 by KingRiaan Reply

    KingRiaanTeam captain
     
  • I personally think that Willie at 10 to start on Saturday will be a good move. Give him some more responsibility. I also think with Willie at 10 he creates alot of space for players around him and if AE could learn to run of his shoulder, or even Jordaan. Also think Coenie and JPP needs a couple of splinters aswell as Reinach. When Willie played 10 for Boland a couple of years back he was devastating. Also for Griquas. I also believe that Keegan should be starting on Saturday along with Dup brothers.

  • Comment 90, posted at 12.04.16 09:48:19 by Fox Reply

    FoxCurrie Cup player
     
  • @Fox (Comment 90) : Yeah I think Keegan would be starting, I also feel that April should be given a start at 10, him and Willie in tandem looks like it can be great to watch, then as they did on saterday, they can switch between 10 and 15 depending on the play and field position

  • Comment 91, posted at 12.04.16 09:54:00 by KingRiaan Reply

    KingRiaanTeam captain
     
  • @KingRiaan (Comment 89) : Firstly i must say that i agree with the skills coach point (although i did think that was part of Rob DuPreez job). In terms of Andre needed to improve his skills…how long do we let a player continue to make errors and hamper the backline because he just needs time to learn the skills? Should we not try someone different? Im just using Andre as the example here but same goes for all players….how long does a coach let a guy continue to try and make errors before he gets yanked and replaced. Tough one i think

  • Comment 92, posted at 12.04.16 09:57:57 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @KingRiaan (Comment 89) : Sharks needs a good mental coach as well as a good skills coach maybe Campese and Dr Gericke?

  • Comment 93, posted at 12.04.16 09:58:28 by JD Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 88) : I know but I can hope for more ;-P

  • Comment 94, posted at 12.04.16 09:59:08 by JD Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 94) : You can…but should a coach pick a guy and hope or rather try someone else better suited to a ball in hand approach should thats what they want.

  • Comment 95, posted at 12.04.16 10:02:07 by SheldonK Reply

    SheldonKAssistant coach
     
  • @Fox (Comment 90) : @KingRiaan (Comment 91) : @SheldonK (Comment 92) : sorry to say but I do not see a lot of changes for Saturday just Deysel in for Marcell.

  • Comment 96, posted at 12.04.16 10:03:02 by JD Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 95) : I’m with you 100% I personally think it’s time to give Heimar a chance but seems as if the coach does not agree.

  • Comment 97, posted at 12.04.16 10:06:41 by JD Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 96) : Keegan in for Marcell?

  • Comment 98, posted at 12.04.16 10:08:55 by robdylan Reply
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  • @SheldonK (Comment 92) : Officially I understand us to have two attack / skill coaches – Rob du Preez and Sean Everitt.

  • Comment 99, posted at 12.04.16 10:09:07 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 98) : For sure.

  • Comment 100, posted at 12.04.16 10:09:41 by Bokhoring Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 96) : I think Keegan will start at 6 with Deysel on the bench.

  • Comment 101, posted at 12.04.16 10:14:07 by KingRiaan Reply

    KingRiaanTeam captain
     
  • @Bokhoring (Comment 99) : Ah yes you are correct. Forget about good ol Sean

  • Comment 102, posted at 12.04.16 10:26:09 by SheldonK Reply

    SheldonKAssistant coach
     
  • @KingRiaan (Comment 101) : I think so too.

  • Comment 103, posted at 12.04.16 10:26:33 by SheldonK Reply

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