Sharks player ratings v Waratahs

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 31 Mar 2014 at 10:40
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Bit of a tricky game to rate, this, as again the Sharks scored a big victory over a top side without ever really clicking on attack.

That said, given the disruptions they have to overcome during the week, as well as strong provocation during the game, this was a superb performance from the team – perhaps their best of the year – and worthy of a team rating of a bit over 8/10. Let’s look at the individuals.

1) Beast Mtawarira. A very good game from the loosehead, who scrummed well and was active on the carry. 8/10
2) Bismarck du Plessis. The captain was back with a bang this week and led from the front. He was a menace at the breakdown while his personal standard of discipline was exemplary. 9/10
3) Jannie du Plessis. Probably his best game of the season so far. Stood like a rock at scrum time and was pretty busy and effective otherwise. 8/10
4) Willem Alberts. A good showing at lock. Took some lineout ball and was huge on defence; loses a point due to a few unfortunate fumbles. 8/10
5) Stephan Lewies. For a man coming into this game under a bit of pressure, he stood up and delivered a frankly massive performance. A real hero in the making is this kid. 8/10
6) Marcell Coetzee. Masterful showing from the opensider, who was simply everywhere on the day. 9/10
7) Jean Deysel. Stepped up and delivered the goods in his start of the year. Big on defence and proved a handful for the Tahs when he had the ball. 8/10
8) Ryan Kankowsi. Great lineout work and controlled well at the base of the scrum. Still looking for his “mojo” as a ball carrier this season. 7/10

9) Charl McLeod. One or two early fumbles robbed his team of momentum, but once he got his head into the game he performed very well. 7/10
10) Fred Zeilinga. Looked the part in his first start at this level. Could perhaps have asked for a little more length on some of his kicks, but otherwise, a superb performance. 8/10
11) JP Pietersen. A little quiet on attack this week (it’s been a while since he played on the left) but played his part in a massively important rush defense showing from the back three. 7/10
12) Frans Steyn. Another very good display, with Steyn making up for a few poor tackle attempts with a huge work rate for bulk of the game. 8/10
13) S’bura Sithole. Continues to grow in confidence. Was defensively the best player on the field and always looked to do what he could with the little ball that came his way. 8/10
14) Odwa Ndungane. Single-handedly shut down at least two Waratahs moves that would have been tries if not for him. Loses a point for a few too many silly knocks, though. 7/10
15) Lwazi Mvovo. Not a bad showing at fullback, by any means, but I am still to be convinced that this is going to be his best position going forward. 7/10

16) Kyle Cooper. Not on long enough to rate, but looked superb in his 7 minutes all the same.
17) Dale Chadwick. Another fabulous late-game scrumming performance. 7/10
18) Lourens Adriaanse. Came on at a time when you felt the Tahs were coming back into the scrum contest and nipped that resurgence right in the bud. 7/10
19) Etienne Oosthuizen. Not on long enough to rate.
20) Keegan Daniel. Took a while to get going, then scored a try that no other player could score because he’s just THAT much more aware of what’s going on. 7/10
21) Stefan Ungerer. Not on long enough to rate.
22) Heimar Williams. Not on long enough to rate.
23) SP Marais. Not on long enough to rate.


  • Got to be a 9 for Fred as he put in a flawless performance! This kid has the talent to go all the way 😀

  • Comment 1, posted at 31.03.14 10:45:44 by Greg Reply
  • Very impressed with Bismarck’s captaincy….last week I thought that he did not have the skill-set to captain and play a big game.

    This week, he was in the ref’s ear the whole time, not whinging but bringing the ref’s attention to tantrum-Tahs infringements. Just a few overthrows in the lineout that kept his performance from being perfect.

    THe Beast of old made a much needed return…now that Chadwick has come to the party, I suspect that we’ll see a lot more games like this from Beast, getting subbed at 50mins.

    The Sharks’ individual brilliance came together as a team on Saturday…just goes to show what the right amount of motivation can do for any team.

  • Comment 2, posted at 31.03.14 10:48:01 by FireTheLooser Reply
  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 2) : Bissie is still learning and growing into the captaincy role as JW has pointed out. He’s a natural leader and the best man for the job IMO.

  • Comment 3, posted at 31.03.14 10:52:48 by Greg Reply
  • I would give them all at least an 8 as the Waratahs are one of the best defensive teams this year and it was a gruelling match at pace and a knock here or there is understandable.
    We kept them out for most of the game and that alone deserves an 8 for all. Great spectacle as well! Loved it.

  • Comment 4, posted at 31.03.14 10:53:35 by KILLER SHARK Reply
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  • For me Fred was simply outstanding! He had big boots to fill in the void left by Lambie, but he stood up and made himself count! Keegs also just showed what an impact player he is. Just hope he convinced JW as well…

  • Comment 5, posted at 31.03.14 10:54:22 by Sharkszen Reply

    Another Nick
  • Most of the players reads SW. I’m sure of it 😈

  • Comment 6, posted at 31.03.14 10:55:59 by Son Of Mayhem Reply
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  • Thank you for this fantastic blog Rob!

    ➡ Guys please contribute some required funds to the admin costs of your favourite blog and show your appreciation ❗

    ❗ ❗ ❗ ❗ 💡 💡 💡 💡 😆

  • Comment 7, posted at 31.03.14 10:57:28 by KILLER SHARK Reply
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  • @KILLER SHARK (Comment 7) : will do. Do I get an extra star for every contribution? 😀 😀

  • Comment 8, posted at 31.03.14 11:01:16 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
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  • I think everyone is severely underrating the game Fred Z played on saturday. 20 year old laaitie scores 19 points on debut against one of the form teams?? Fkng amazing!

  • Comment 9, posted at 31.03.14 11:03:29 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
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  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 9) : Not me! (see comment 1 above) How blessed are the Sharks to have him at their disposal now. ❗

  • Comment 10, posted at 31.03.14 11:06:15 by Greg Reply

  • @Greg (Comment 10) : I love how calm and confident he carries himself. He can seriously go places. Maybe its a good thing that the newspapers arent hyping him. Yet.

  • Comment 11, posted at 31.03.14 11:16:07 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
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  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 11) : Agree. The last thing we want is to get caught up in the ‘best 10 for the Boks’ argument that has beset Lambie unfortunately (through no fault of his own of course).

  • Comment 12, posted at 31.03.14 11:18:58 by Greg Reply

  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 8) : close….

  • Comment 13, posted at 31.03.14 11:26:55 by robdylan Reply
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  • Well done to the boys! I thought this game was going to be all about defense at the end of the first half with the Tahs most probably coming away with a losing bonus point. To beat them by the 22 points was amazing. What was especially positive is that we didn’t fall asleep in the first 20 minutes of the second half.

    The spilt balls we’re happening with such regularity on both sides that I wouldn’t read too much into that. Bruising defense + high humidity = poor ball retention.

  • Comment 14, posted at 31.03.14 11:37:22 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 8) : and you get to go to cloud 9! 😆

  • Comment 15, posted at 31.03.14 11:39:20 by KILLER SHARK Reply
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  • Very good performance from the team. Much better commitment from everyone. How good was Alberts to get back and make a try saving tackle after AAC break in the first 10 minutes?

    I estimate the Sharks are now halfway to making the playoffs on log points. You will probably need around 46 to get into the playoffs this year. Must say it has been one of the more competitive super seasons I have seen so far – teams like the Rebels and Force knocking over big name teams.

  • Comment 16, posted at 31.03.14 11:47:30 by Bokhoring Reply
  • Agree with the ratings. Our front row performed bloody well after last week’s showing. We have a lot of injuries but it seems that the replacements knows exactly what is expected and this is exciting to see. If these youngsters can be kept together under JW’s leadership we will dominate the next few seasons :mrgreen: just my opinion though :mrgreen:

  • Comment 17, posted at 31.03.14 11:54:56 by RedSharkUtd82 Reply

  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 9) : Personally I think the points tally is not that important – my argument being what if someone else had the kicking duties??

    But I agree that his performance was underrated. He was brilliant in his decision making and delivered in all areas (Defense, distribution, kicking, etc).

    All I would like to see is an extra attacking dimension from him – his own exciting running game

  • Comment 18, posted at 31.03.14 11:55:45 by pienaar111 Reply

  • A nice change to SR for me would be to get rid of local derbies completely, and make it a “us vs. them” competition.

    This will breathe much needed life back into CC rugby…and we’ll get to really back SA teams against Oz and NZ.

  • Comment 19, posted at 31.03.14 11:57:32 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • @Bokhoring (Comment 16) : Yes Alberts was fantastic with that cover.
    In fact if you review that move and you compare it to the move that the Bulls made to put Bosman close to our tryline, you’ll see that it is a carbon copy and both times we were cleft wide open.
    During both those moves it was Alberts affecting the tackle on our line and on 1 of the fastest opposition, saving the tries!

  • Comment 20, posted at 31.03.14 12:15:14 by KILLER SHARK Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
  • Interestingly, the log for all SA teams at home against foreign teams reads Played 8, Won 7 Drawn 1 Lost 0. This is the longest non losing streak by SA teams against foreign teams at home in the history of the comp!

    SA teams on tour, though, makes for rather dismal reading!

  • Comment 21, posted at 31.03.14 12:20:49 by Greg Reply

  • @KILLER SHARK (Comment 20) : who is Bosman?

  • Comment 22, posted at 31.03.14 12:22:23 by robdylan Reply
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  • Sorry to say but Steyn should only get a 5 for that late tackle. I’m sure that he will be suspended for 2 weeks and that’s something that the Sharks can’t afford as both 10 & 13 is young and needs a senior player to help them settle.

  • Comment 23, posted at 31.03.14 12:46:15 by JD Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 22) : Sorry, sorry everyone, sorry! (Ala John Cleese coming down the castle stairs in Holy grail) I meant to write Basson. Not Bosman!!

  • Comment 24, posted at 31.03.14 12:52:20 by KILLER SHARK Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 23) : no late tackle no suspension no fowl or foul play.

  • Comment 25, posted at 31.03.14 12:53:45 by KILLER SHARK Reply
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  • @KILLER SHARK (Comment 20) : While you are busy reviewing that check out the amount of ground covered, and the vision shown, by Zelinga in getting back to try and make the tackle in the try that the Tahs scored.

  • Comment 26, posted at 31.03.14 13:07:31 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 22) : Any build-up piece to the varsity shield 16:30 final tonight?

  • Comment 27, posted at 31.03.14 13:07:32 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • @Salmonoid the Subtle (Comment 26) : hey I rate that boytjie. He shifted in seamlessly and looked like an old campaigner.

  • Comment 28, posted at 31.03.14 13:21:41 by KILLER SHARK Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 27) : will make a plan

  • Comment 29, posted at 31.03.14 13:25:49 by robdylan Reply
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  • Agree with the ratings, though I might have scored Fred another point. Good to see a 10 willing to play both deep and flat. Pat hasn’t been playing flat enough of late.

    Also big respect to Marcel and Sbura:both keeping their upward trajectory going.

  • Comment 30, posted at 31.03.14 13:44:20 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • @KILLER SHARK (Comment 25) : he’s very lucky not to get at least a week for that tackle. Glad he’s going to play next week.

  • Comment 31, posted at 31.03.14 13:45:11 by JD Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 23) : Sorry bud he received an off field yellow and no suspension. As a matter of interest what would your sanction, for Rob Horne’s cowardly swinging arm tackle to the face of Steyn, then be?

  • Comment 32, posted at 31.03.14 13:46:31 by Bayshark Reply

  • @robdylan (Comment 29) : Thanks Rob, I’m really excited at the prospect of KZN (and by implication the SHarks) finally having an opportunity to possibly have a varsity cup team….how much influence did Smit have on UKZN finally taking their rugby serious?

  • Comment 33, posted at 31.03.14 13:51:13 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • Zeilinga impressed.

    Mvovo found out in positional play, something they should have exploited far more.

    Steyn, despite striking fear into the heart of ball carriers, still lacks commitment to an overall defensive system at times.

    Pillar post defense was non existent in the one Waratahs try’s, an area I guarantee you smarter teams will identify and attack.

    Nice enterprise between the forwards, especially like Deysel and Alberts linking up to create a bit of deception in the tight carrying game.

    Chadwick deserves more than a 10 minute cameo. Proving he has Springbok worth in my opinion.

    Backline only seems to execute set moves off set piece. I would like to see generic planned attacks used from ruck to ruck at times-something teams like the Chiefs and Reds are doing nicely at the moment.

  • Comment 34, posted at 31.03.14 15:15:19 by Talent Reply
  • Oh and Sithole was excellent.

  • Comment 35, posted at 31.03.14 15:16:26 by Talent Reply
  • @Bayshark (Comment 32) : at least 2 weeks as it should have been a red card (a strike to the face of a player), but hey that’s only my opinion. My way of seeing it is how I would have felt if it was a Sharks player that got tackled like that.

  • Comment 36, posted at 31.03.14 15:35:29 by JD Reply
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  • Great team performance against a very good Tahs team ,at the 20 min mark sitting in the stand you just got the feeling ,their demeanor and focus was that of a machine working at its optimum,you just got the feeling they were going to win just by how much.Rob only an 8 for Fred Z,eish now that’s bias.only truly great 10’s have absolute composure and time on the ball when kicking or in play,who needs a DC,QC when you have Fred Z,enough said

  • Comment 37, posted at 31.03.14 19:34:31 by benji Reply
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  • @benji (Comment 37) : must agree, seeing it was his first game on the super rugby stage he performed magnificently. Looked as if he belongs there. Let’s hope he can continue with that form.

  • Comment 38, posted at 31.03.14 20:59:30 by JD Reply
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  • @RedSharkUtd82 (Comment 17) : This is what we wanted and called for during Plum’s days, a system that everyone understands so that new guys to the team especially youngsters can know exactly what the requirements of that position are.

  • Comment 39, posted at 01.04.14 06:37:00 by GreatSharksays Reply

  • @GreatSharksays (Comment 39) : Yeah we are definitely heading in the right direction :mrgreen:

  • Comment 40, posted at 02.04.14 09:24:37 by RedSharkUtd82 Reply


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