robdylan

The Currie Cup is not won in July


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Currie Cup, Original Content, Sharks on 19 Jul 2011 at 09:41
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Is it just me, or has an alarming tendency surfaced after just a single round of the 2011 Currie Cup? I’ve lost count of the number of articles I’ve read just in the past two days claiming that the Sharks have all but won this year’s trophy. After one game? Ridiculous!

The Sharks pasted a very poor Blue Bulls team this weekend, let’s make no bones about that. The win was pleasing in a number of respects, not least the way in which a huge number of debutants (or near-debutants) stood up to the challenge and played superbly. Getting the campaign off to a good start, with a home win and a bonus point to boot was critical, but we really shouldn’t take things any further than that right now.

For one thing, nobody saw the Cheetahs play and we have no idea whether they were more or less impressive than the Sharks in round 1. It’s very easy to take a good result (against admittedly poor opposition) and turn it into a trend, but any talk of the Sharks being “favourites” to retain the cup is simply nonsense. There are far too many rounds still to go and many, many other factors still to come into play before the final destination of the Currie Cup is decided. For one thing, the entire competition will change from round 4 onwards, when a huge influx of surplus Bok players will come in to strengthen certain sides – mostly the Bulls – quite substantially.

Injuries are already starting to take their toll and while the Sharks have fortunately escaped (relatively) unscathed for now, a long-term injury to a lock, prop, scrumhalf or wing could have a potentially campaign-derailing impact, just as the injury to yet another WP flyhalf looks likely to do.

The Sharks, though, need to control the controllable and right now, that means winning in Nelspruit on Friday night. The young guns in the side will find that it’s actually quite easy to get motivated and play well when it’s your first cap, at home, in a big match in front of a partisan crowd. Playing in front of 10 okes and a dog on a freezing Friday evening in Nelspruit is quite a different prospect, especially up against a battle-hardened Pumas outfit who simply love to take down the “big names” in this competition. For the youngsters in this Sharks team, the trip to Mbombela is simply the next phase they need to go through to earn their stripes and any talk of “legendary” (or, in fact, even “competent”) status should be withheld until they show that they can come through this sort of test with their heads held high.


18 Comments

  • An observation, Nelspruit and freezing dont go so well, Nelspruit has a climate not too dissimilar to Durban so that should actually favour the Sharks (as opposed to a bone hard, freezing Witbank field). Another observation, Pumas played the Blue Bulls in Nelspruit last year and they won but the game was played in front of an almost full house so I expect that there will be a good turnout.

    Pumas have missed a trick by playing the Sharks in Nelspruit, maybe that is why there was confusion about the venue for this game, I wonder if the Pumas were not trying to get the game moved to Witbank when they realised that Nelspruit would suit the Durban based side the best.

  • Comment 1, posted at 19.07.11 09:59:59 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • Hallo Naas, oh its u Rob 🙂

  • Comment 2, posted at 19.07.11 10:05:01 by Franshark Reply
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  • And let’s not forget more than half the Bok team announced to take on the Aussies are Bulls, those Bulls will be back in the Bulls team when the RWC squad leaves RSA.

  • Comment 3, posted at 19.07.11 10:12:36 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
     
  • @Salmonoid (Comment 1) : I also thought…freezing cold / Nelspruit does not go hand in hand! 😉 Nelspruit’s climate is also more ‘tropical’so I also thought it would suit us better than Witbank.

    Rob’s right though – loads of continious hard work needs to be put in week in week out. We need to get as many points as we possibly could to counter for when other teams might be strenghtened by returning suprplus boks!

  • Comment 4, posted at 19.07.11 10:33:51 by Ice Reply
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  • one thing I learnt as a Sharks supporter – one week you’re up and one you’re down and so it goes so one may very well enjoys the ones one is up and make the most of it 😀

  • Comment 5, posted at 19.07.11 10:59:04 by rekinek Reply
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  • @Ice (Comment 4) : yip. and there will be lots of Bokke coming back but fortunately the best ones will be kept for WC. I hope that our boks don’t just walk into strating line if the youngsters keep performing as they did last saturday.

  • Comment 6, posted at 19.07.11 11:01:09 by rekinek Reply
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  • As far as my limited climate knowledge goes the nights might be freezing in Nelspruit – the Friday game is late.

  • Comment 7, posted at 19.07.11 11:01:51 by rekinek Reply
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  • @Ice (Comment 4) : I can vouch for them putting in hard work. Kette is at the morning practice at KP and she says the boys are working hard. she has camera in hand but nobody is taking their shirts off. 😉

  • Comment 8, posted at 19.07.11 11:04:46 by KSA Shark © Reply

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  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 8) : 😀
    perhaps they are not sweating enough after all :mrgreen:

  • Comment 9, posted at 19.07.11 11:07:53 by rekinek Reply
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  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 8) : Tjit tjit tjit!!! Lucky lady!! tell her to be patient…it gets hot in Durbs! 😆

  • Comment 10, posted at 19.07.11 11:08:43 by Ice Reply
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  • Come clean Rob – this article was written to placate opposition fans who frequent this site, wasn’t it? Who are we really kidding? That cup is as good as ours! 😈

  • Comment 11, posted at 19.07.11 11:11:11 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 11) : Odds on WSB is 5/2 for the Sharks to win! 😆

  • Comment 12, posted at 19.07.11 11:31:19 by Ice Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 11) : you know me too well 🙂

  • Comment 13, posted at 19.07.11 11:36:10 by robdylan Reply
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  • @rekinek (Comment 7) : Nelspruit might get cold but not nearly as cold as Witbank.

  • Comment 14, posted at 19.07.11 12:32:13 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 14) : ja ja… lucky this isn’t frikken perfectweatherpredictionworld.co.za 🙂

  • Comment 15, posted at 19.07.11 12:45:22 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 15) : :mrgreen:
    maybe its just me but having had to travel and work in both places in winter I know which one I would rather be at.

    Now lets predict the crowd. I say a good crowd will attend.

  • Comment 16, posted at 19.07.11 12:57:01 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • Many youngsters can have a good day put then play kak the next game. A quality player will stand the test of time. Hopefully our youngsters are quality players.

  • Comment 17, posted at 19.07.11 19:12:55 by The Sharks Sharkie Reply
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    The Sharks Sharkie
     
  • Well we only need to look at last years first fixture when griquas klapped us and we then went on to win the competition, so we shouldnt look to far ahead at present, although things are looking promising

  • Comment 18, posted at 20.07.11 00:39:23 by RuckingFun Reply

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