KSA Shark ©

Bok boost imminent in Shark Tank

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :Currie Cup, In the news, Sharks on 26 Aug 2008 at 22:14

Sharks head coach John Plumtree is looking forward to boosting his ranks with some Springbok power for the final stretch of the Currie Cup season.

The Tri-Nations will come to an end for South Africa this coming weekend, signalling and end to the mid-year Tests, and after the Johannesburg match against Australia, Plumtree will be counting the days until he can fortify his troops with national players, as the Springboks are released back to their provinces.

“We’re looking forward to getting some Boks back next week with a five-game run into the play-offs,” Plumtree confirmed.

“There is a stand-down period for some Boks, but not all.”

Rugby 365 reports that the coach also revealed that influential Sharks and Springbok skipper John Smit was nearing full fitness, having already moved into the swimming and cycling phase of his rehabilitation of his groin injury.

“He [Smit] is still around three weeks off [full fitness] and Ryan Kankowski will hopefully be available next week,” Plumtree told sharksrugby.co.za.

“If all goes according to plan, we could have six or seven changes next week.”

The Sharks will once again take up the Currie Cup slack on Friday when they meet the Boland Cavaliers in Wellington, after a long break of three weeks in between games.

Plumtree reckoned that the break was good for everyone involved with the Sharks, and that the squad were refreshed and raring to finish their season strongly.

“Everyone has come back refreshed and like me, really enjoyed the break. I’ve been enjoying the coaching this week. The players have come back showing great enthusiasm.”

“I think if you review the season to date, we have to be happy.

“We’ve had a lot of injuries, haven’t been able to select the same side in consecutive weeks and when a lot of questions were asked of the Sharks play, we weathered that storm and came back, winning some useful games.

“I’m proud of the players and of the management squad. In terms of our preparation each week, sometimes it’s felt like we were putting a pub team together late in the week, trying to find fit players. But if we have a good core of leaders and everyone paddles in same direction, we will play well.”

It will be another week of upheaval with regards to Sharks team selection this week, with Ruan Pienaar and Francois Steyn back with the Springboks, and Odwa Ndungane and Jannie du Plessis also coming into the Bok reckoning.

On top of that, skipper Johann Muller is out injured, which means Plumtree will probably have to make at least five changes to his side.

One shred of good news is that scrumhalf Rory Kockott will be available this weekend, despite still suffering effects from his injury.

“He is still in a bit of discomfort, but he’ll play off bench,” explained Plumtree.

“We’ll start with Charl McLeod, he’s been in and out of the squad and this is nice opposition for us to see what he can do.

“He’s an exciting, attacking player, a good defender and an area of his play we will be watching closely is his decision-making.”


  • This little line is due to cause a few people to be upset next week.

    “There is a stand-down period for some Boks, but not all.”

    I expect there will be quite a few of us expecting players to be back and only to discover that some vital players are not being released.

  • Comment 1, posted at 26.08.08 22:17:24 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 1) : I wonder how long the stand-down period will be

  • Comment 2, posted at 27.08.08 07:32:15 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 2) :

    Yeah it will be interesting to find out.

    I find it strange that every union (except the Lions) are releasing individual statements that they will know on Sunday which of their players they are getting back.

    Am I just being cynical or is there some reason behind the lack of any ONE journo writing something regarding the release of bok players after the 3Ns.

  • Comment 3, posted at 27.08.08 07:42:19 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 3) : I find it strange that every union (except the Lions) are releasing individual statements – That’s because they don’t have any Boks 👿

    I assume the guys like Burger, Smith, Bismarck, Beast, de Villiers, Jacobs, JP, guys who have played almost every game will be asked of their Unions to miss a game or two.

    But Odwa, Mujati, Luke for example wouldn’t.

  • Comment 4, posted at 27.08.08 08:00:50 by Baldrick Reply

  • @Baldrick (Comment 4) : Bismarck is the only guy we really NEED to get back at this stage. Kanko too, obviously, but we’ll have him next week anyway.

    Ruan and Frans have played bugger all rugby anyway, so I suspect we’ll have them. Only rally Beast and Adi we’ll have to do without and we have good cover for them.

    Reckon WP might get a bit of a shock

  • Comment 5, posted at 27.08.08 09:10:41 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 5) : Yeah…we’re desperate for Bis…especially for the potentially tough encounters coming up. We can do without Beast and Adi for a week or 2… if the rest period stretches that far.

  • Comment 6, posted at 27.08.08 09:26:07 by blackshark Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!
  • Charl should do what Rory did…play his heart out…and then maybe that will nudge Ruan Pienaar to the right direction.

  • Comment 7, posted at 27.08.08 09:29:58 by blackshark Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!
  • @blackshark (Comment 7) : very keen to see Charl get a start… he’s a promising player and I fear he will be the one to lose out if Pienaar insists on playing 9.

  • Comment 8, posted at 27.08.08 09:35:11 by robdylan Reply
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