Consistency key for Daniel

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :In the news, Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 16 Jan 2013 at 11:10
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Speaking to Rugby365, Sharks captain Keegan Daniel has put into words what many of us have privately been thinking ahead of the new season; while the Sharks did well in patches last year, there’s very little doubt that a lack of consistency during the regular season made life much harder for them in the play-off stages than it might otherwise have been.

“We were consistent in the fact that we made finals, but in terms of our performances we probably weren’t as consistent as we would have liked,” Dainel told the website. “We slipped up at times in the last competition, which put us under pressure towards the end. We want to be a lot more consistent in the way we perform in the games early on this season.”

Saying that is one thing, of course – and doing it is quite another – but the Sharks do have a few factors working in their favour this year. Among those is a relatively benign injury list at present, with only hooker Bismarck du Plessis currently ruled out of action. Perhaps more telling, though, will be continuity of playing staff, the likes of which hasn’t been seen in Durban for many a year. The Sharks have got used to welcoming scores of new faces into the side each January but this year there will only be two new-comers, with the balance of the team having been there last year, if not for Super Rugby then at least for the Currie Cup campaign.

Of those that have been added to the squad, one is not a newcomer at all, with Butch James himself a veteran of numerous Super Rugby campaigns with the Sharks. Franco van der Merwe, on the other hand, has been around the block a good few times and if you could pinpoint one key area in which the Sharks looked vulnerable last season, it was that lack of a true lineout lock.

“Butch has been around, he’s been here before and will fit back in easily and will add a lot of value. It’s also good to have Franco here, he will add invaluable experience to the second row, ” said Daniel. “You know we struggled a little there in the past. He’s captained the Lions and has been in the Springbok squad recently, so it’s good to have someone like that in the tight five.”

“You can look at any squad and say it’s a great squad with good depth, but at the end of the day you’ve got to put it all together on the field. But we do have some good young players who’ve come through nicely and spent one or two seasons playing Currie Cup or Super Rugby. Then the likes of Butch and Franco are just going to add to that.”


  • The only really “inconsistent” performance last year, was against the Lions in Jhb. At the start of the season we were without the services of many of our best players, such as Beast, Alberts, Deysel and Kanko. We also had to cope portions of the season without Steyn, JPP, Lambie, Bismark, Whitehead, Jordaan, PSdT. Once we had most of our players back, we were serious title contenders.

  • Comment 1, posted at 16.01.13 12:12:12 by King Shark Reply
    King Shark
  • @King Shark (Comment 1) : ja, but any team can point an injury as an excuse for not doing well…. look at the players the Stormers had to make do without and yet they still topped the conference.

    This is the thing that worries me…. we talk about depth, but we also seem very dependant on specific individuals.

    For me, the key question is this: how are we going to cope without Bismarck for the first few months?

  • Comment 2, posted at 16.01.13 12:14:33 by robdylan Reply
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  • One thing i have taken pride in is how our boys never use injury as an excuse, we pulled through players put up their hands, etc. Our youngsters gained some much experience it only benefits us in that how many great young players were unearthed!

  • Comment 3, posted at 16.01.13 12:32:18 by Dunx Reply

  • @King Shark (Comment 1) : Well we don’t have an excuse this year. 99% fit squad and realy great talent and a good mix between youth and experience. Better make it happen this time around.

  • Comment 4, posted at 16.01.13 12:42:16 by Viking Reply
  • @Viking (Comment 4) : I agree with you…. no reason not to

  • Comment 5, posted at 16.01.13 12:47:15 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 2) : I don’t see Burden or Cooper as real replacements, don’t get me wrong I like both of them but last years currie cup made me worry about how good they are. Neither one of them could buy a straight line-out throw never mind throwing one. With all my hart I hope they sorted that part of their game but we will only know after the competion started and they had to do it in a game.

  • Comment 6, posted at 16.01.13 19:02:25 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • @JD (Comment 6) : Cooper has plenty of potential and has a high workrate like Bis, but yes, those lineouts are forking atrocious.

  • Comment 7, posted at 16.01.13 20:59:23 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Maybe when Kanko is back he can once again reform the Sharks line-out just like he did last year.

  • Comment 8, posted at 16.01.13 21:23:33 by JD Reply
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