war1

Is there cause for optimism for Sharks?


Written by Warren Smith (war1)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 5 Apr 2017 at 09:18
Tagged with : , , , ,

I went through a few emotions in the wake of the loss to the Lions this weekend. The first was anger at the inconsistent refereeing. Second was despair at another missed opportunity to win at Ellis Park. The game was a huge missed opportunity. Eventually I allowed that most dangerous of emotions, hope, to creep in.

This Sharks team is one that is not short on talent but is a little short on experience. And by this I mean experience as a team. This is the first Super Rugby campaign for this coaching staff and the first or second Super Rugby campaign for many players in this team. The truth is the Sharks came up against a team at the top of their growth curve and came closer to beating them than most would have expected. While it was a disappointing result, the rugby does not stop and I think there is a lot more to come from this team.

I am excited to see how this team develops over the next few years. As the coaching staff learn and grow. As the players become more experienced and that consistency which is the mark of the best becomes part of their games. I am also hopeful of the development of some of those unquantifiable qualities of camraderie and team cohesion that can only come with time spent playing together.

Without looking too far into the future there are some key areas that I would hope the team have been working on. Discipline is one of the most important things. The Sharks cannot afford to be giving away as many penalties as they have been. Another is execution. Big games are won by the team that converts the opportunities that they have created. The game against the Jaguares on Saturday is definitely a big one and I for one am hoping to see the team responding well and showing an improved performance and hopefully securing a much needed win.



45 Comments

  • I am unabashedly optimistic about this team, even more so if we keep this continuity for 2 or 3 seasons. We even have started to slowly build the kind of depth that can handle the yearly migration of players overseas. One thing is clear, we need to keep our coaching team locked in for the next 5 years, whatever it takes.

  • Comment 1, posted at 05.04.17 09:43:15 by KimFurber Reply
    Under 21 player
     
  • Great article, thanks. Mirrors my optimism for this team. They are looking like just that, a team, for the first time since the 2013 Currie Cup. They are playing for each other and are willing to be bold and adventurous on the field. I was gutted at the loss, but for a change it was because I felt we should have won, not at the performance delivered by my Sharks.

    Hats off to Rob Du Preez for not only his coaching, but also for bringing back the vibe and culture which so many of us associate with the Sharks.

  • Comment 2, posted at 05.04.17 09:47:51 by StevieS Reply
    Author
    StevieSSuper Rugby player
     
  • Agreed, our biggest concern is discipline at the moment. A lot happens in the trenches (rucks & mauls) but the players need to be smart about it (Richie Macaw). Still upset about the inconsistent calls made on the weekend, but this team has come a long way from where we were last year! The intent shown is very exciting. Massive defensive effort from the team so far, one comment though would be for the lazy runners…they need to tackle, get up as quickly as possible and fill a gap. The game is all about numbers…to create those 2 on 1′s we need 15 guys on their feet supporting and not a couple of bodies laying on the ground. Extremely excited of what lies ahead, if we continue improving each week we will make a BIG challenge for the title come end of the season!! :smile:

  • Comment 3, posted at 05.04.17 09:48:33 by EugeneVT Reply

    EugeneVTUnder 19 player
     
  • Nice article! You’re right, discipline and adapting to the ref now needs improvement.

  • Comment 4, posted at 05.04.17 09:58:24 by vanmartin Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
    vanmartinAssistant coach
     
  • @vanmartin (Comment 4) : What i would like to know is how complaints on the reffing is done and what procedures, outcomes etc. Would be nice to know if the Sharks lodged a complaint against last weeks useless bunch.i.e. ref and TMO touchtudges dont get much say

  • Comment 5, posted at 05.04.17 10:48:36 by Dunx Reply

    DunxSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Dunx (Comment 5) : The problem with teams or fans laying complaints is it never helps the team in the future… There will always be off the field chatter over “special” decisions… but the last thing you need is to get on a refs wrong side… because then it becomes an uphill battle…

  • Comment 6, posted at 05.04.17 10:59:00 by Warren Harvey Reply

    Vodacom Cup player
     
  • @Dunx (Comment 5) : Not sure how that works and whether it’s even made public. How do you feel your SuperBru picks work out? I missed out on a lot of margin points but somehow I still managed to climb four places on the SW leaderboard which feels nothing short of miraculous.

  • Comment 7, posted at 05.04.17 11:18:16 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @Warren Harvey (Comment 6) : Interesting point.

  • Comment 8, posted at 05.04.17 11:20:02 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @Warren Harvey (Comment 6) :”but the last thing you need is to get on a refs wrong side”
    If this is his good side ,I ‘d hate to see how we would fare if we got on Greef/van Heerden’s his bad side…

  • Comment 9, posted at 05.04.17 11:22:27 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    The houndAssistant coach
     
  • Agreed, our discipline needs a lot of work, we are ranked 2nd in the competition on penalties conceded (43) so far, we are not going to win any trophy if that number continues to grow at its current rate. We are also making a lot of handling errors, 181 so far! That’s a lot! 5th highest of all teams.

  • Comment 10, posted at 05.04.17 11:40:39 by Quintin Reply

    QuintinSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Quintin (Comment 10) : hey at least we’re in the top of the log in some area’s!!! :twisted:

  • Comment 11, posted at 05.04.17 12:50:43 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Author
    JDAssistant coach
     
  • Nice one Rob. Ja must say I also take a lot of optimism out of the performances to date. This is still a growing side and they’re getting better almost every match. Think they used a lot of points scoring opportunities that they had against the Lions. Only started to struggle at the end of the game when they were under pressure. Just hope they’re able to show that that can produce back to back great performances and not slip in intensity as they did against the Kings!

  • Comment 12, posted at 05.04.17 12:57:17 by JD Reply
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    JDAssistant coach
     
  • @JD (Comment 12) : Many teams have had a last 10 min altitude blow out at Ellis Park ,or whatever it is called this week.

  • Comment 13, posted at 05.04.17 13:34:51 by The hound Reply
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  • At home against one of the weaker teams travelling halfway across the galaxy. Only one way this can go.

  • Comment 14, posted at 05.04.17 15:37:23 by McLovin Reply

    McLovinAssistant coach
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 14) : “one of the weaker teams”? You on crack bro? :)

  • Comment 15, posted at 05.04.17 15:54:35 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
    robdylanHead Coach
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 15) : They beat the Kings away ( who doesn’t), then the Cheetahs, Reds and Lions B-team at home. Easy pickings. :mrgreen: :twisted:

  • Comment 16, posted at 05.04.17 15:59:48 by McLovin Reply

    McLovinAssistant coach
     
  • Seriously though, Sharks should take this. By 15 at least is my prediction.

  • Comment 17, posted at 05.04.17 16:01:49 by McLovin Reply

    McLovinAssistant coach
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 16) : LOL. I’ve missed you bro. Any chance you’re in the City tomorrow?

  • Comment 18, posted at 05.04.17 16:04:00 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
    robdylanHead Coach
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 18) : Maybe. What have you got in mind?

  • Comment 19, posted at 05.04.17 16:09:35 by McLovin Reply

    McLovinAssistant coach
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 19) : I’m having leaving drinks (changing jobs)…. but extended a general invite to anyone I know. Liverpool Street Station

  • Comment 20, posted at 05.04.17 16:13:10 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
    robdylanHead Coach
     
  • Optimistic, hell yeah…..Thoma du Toit – 21, Franco Marais – 24, Ruan Botha – 25, Ettienne Osthuizen – 24, Stephan Lewies – 25, The Dup Twins 21 each, Tera Mthembu – 26, Curwin – 19, Inny Radebe – 22, Jeremy Ward – 21, Lukhanyo Am – 23, Andre Esterhuizen – 23, Kobus van Wyk – 25. In effect a very young team but showing signs of lots of maturity (well coahed) Keep this team together for a few years and we are sure to see something special.

  • Comment 21, posted at 05.04.17 16:19:36 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the SubtleAssistant coach
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 14) : Sweet mother of baby Buddha, do you ever let up? :mrgreen:

  • Comment 22, posted at 05.04.17 16:25:18 by Culling Song Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
    Culling SongTeam captain
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 20) : Congrats on the new job. And thanks for the invite but will have to pass unfortunately. I lack the social skills and personality to sucessfully mingle with large groups of strangers. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 23, posted at 05.04.17 16:31:28 by McLovin Reply

    McLovinAssistant coach
     
  • @Culling Song (Comment 22) : I try to. Really I do. But it’s pathological.

  • Comment 24, posted at 05.04.17 16:33:17 by McLovin Reply

    McLovinAssistant coach
     
  • Anyone know what the deal is with private ownership of provincial sides? Since you can now buy 73% or something.

  • Comment 25, posted at 05.04.17 17:40:51 by McLovin Reply

    McLovinAssistant coach
     
  • @The hound (Comment 13) : personally I think it was more the pressure on them to score and score quickly that made them rush things that caused it but yes don’t think the altitude helped the situation.

  • Comment 26, posted at 05.04.17 17:56:03 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Author
    JDAssistant coach
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 25) : why you thinking of buying a team? Bulls might be cheap seeing how they’re doing this year!!! :twisted:

  • Comment 27, posted at 05.04.17 17:57:45 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Author
    JDAssistant coach
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 23) : it’s Rob do you really think a large group of people are going to pitch to say good bye?!?!?! :twisted:

  • Comment 28, posted at 05.04.17 17:59:36 by JD Reply
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  • @Dunx (Comment 5) : The Sharks can obviously lodge a complaint with SANZAAR, Lyndon Bray will respond that they reviewed it and found nothing wrong (or that one or two decisions was wrong)

    Alternatively they can ask WR for clarification on specific decisions, which will then be published as part of the Rugby laws.

    The best the Sharks can hope for is a moral victory on one or two decisions.

  • Comment 29, posted at 05.04.17 18:02:28 by Baylion Reply

    BaylionSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Salmonoid the Subtle (Comment 21) : add Ginger Giant, Coenie, Vermeulen, Andrews, Terra, April, Smith, Nkosi all not pushing pension Sharks looks in good shape but one thing is missing…….. a good quality young scrummy!!!!

  • Comment 30, posted at 05.04.17 18:04:58 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Author
    JDAssistant coach
     
  • The Sharks have some great young talent coming through that should do well for them this year but especially the next few years. Thomas the Tank, Etienne Oosthuizen, Ruan Botha, the Twins, Curwin Bosch, Kobus van Wyk and Lukhanyo Am are real talents to build with. Some of the other youngsters I have seen enough of to comment. And I feel Andre Esterhuizen needs to re-invent himself, an obvious talent but seems to have been cast as a defensive 12 and his attack seems to suffer

  • Comment 31, posted at 05.04.17 18:09:10 by Baylion Reply

    BaylionSuper Rugby player
     
  • @Baylion (Comment 29) : but by doing so piss off a lot of other people that might be officiating games in the future!?!?!? Think it’s better to discuss it with local ref council to show you’re not really happy with the rulings. Personally I think some media already made a huge fuss about it so power that be would know about it, so maybe what needed to be said has been said and time to move on and focus on the future!!!

  • Comment 32, posted at 05.04.17 18:12:43 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Author
    JDAssistant coach
     
  • @JD (Comment 27) : Buy them and close them down. :lol:

  • Comment 33, posted at 05.04.17 18:19:21 by McLovin Reply

    McLovinAssistant coach
     
  • @JD (Comment 28) : Funny. I’m sure there will be plenty of people. Even if only to make sure he really leaves.
    Sorry Rob. Love you really. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 34, posted at 05.04.17 18:21:40 by McLovin Reply

    McLovinAssistant coach
     
  • @JD (Comment 32) : Not really, it’s done regularly although SANZAAR don’t seem to publish the results of their reviews anymore. The WR clarifications are standard stuff

    Obviously these complaints / queries can be taken up with SA Referees for review. Each ref supposedly goes through a peer review after every match anyway.

    Especially now with the stricter application of high tackles/neck contact it could be worth teams’ while to get clarification

  • Comment 35, posted at 05.04.17 18:21:49 by Baylion Reply

    BaylionSuper Rugby player
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 34) : if you love me then why do you leave all the time? :)

  • Comment 36, posted at 06.04.17 08:59:29 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
    robdylanHead Coach
     
  • @Baylion (Comment 35) : yes but must be done in a responsible manner.
    I’m sure we all have that one coworker that when you see them you want to run for the hills and hide as they have nothing positive or good to say all they do is complain and complain and then complain some more!!! Don’t want to be that person or team that is seen as complaining about every thing!

  • Comment 37, posted at 06.04.17 09:18:37 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Author
    JDAssistant coach
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 34) : hahaha Ja that’s also true!!!
    @robdylan (Comment 36) : maybe he’s just admiring you from a distance much like a stalker would do!?!?!? Not that I’m saying he’s one!?!?!? :twisted:

  • Comment 38, posted at 06.04.17 09:21:38 by JD Reply
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  • @Baylion (Comment 29) : Walking off the field, I think the Sharks already had the moral victory, yes they would have been gutted at the loss and a lapse here and there, but they would have known that they were the better team. The video reviews of the game would have just enhanced that. Sadly the moral victory means squat on the points table.

  • Comment 39, posted at 06.04.17 09:46:21 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the SubtleAssistant coach
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 36) : It’s not you, it’s me. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 40, posted at 06.04.17 09:57:35 by McLovin Reply

    McLovinAssistant coach
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 40) : I know

  • Comment 41, posted at 06.04.17 11:12:50 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
    robdylanHead Coach
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 41) : Rob any idea when Rob will announce the team?

  • Comment 42, posted at 06.04.17 11:47:04 by JD Reply
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    JDAssistant coach
     
  • @JD (Comment 42) : should be out in 4 minutes

  • Comment 43, posted at 06.04.17 11:56:06 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
    robdylanHead Coach
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 43) : it is.

  • Comment 44, posted at 06.04.17 12:02:23 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
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    Salmonoid the SubtleAssistant coach
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 43) : thanx Rob quick and efficient as always!!! :lol:

  • Comment 45, posted at 06.04.17 12:19:11 by JD Reply
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