Scrum! Scrum! Scrum!

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 16 May 2014 at 12:54
Tagged with : , , , , , ,

The Sharks have picked something of a behemoth pack for tomorrow’s Christchurch encounter – one that is starting to resemble mission:impossible given not only current form, but also historical results between these two teams.

I’m not one to read too much into history, though – and on paper at least, I reckon the Sharks team picked for this encounter stands about as good a chance of recording that rare first Christchurch win as any we’ve had in the past. There’s no shortage of skill or experience there, that’s for sure, but only a fool would contend that the visitors are anything other than rank underdogs given the respective differences in approach over the last few weeks.

I feel that the Sharks missed a trick against the Brumbies, though. Their set piece was significantly stronger for much of the match, with scrums, lineouts, mauls and basically any other facet that involved pitting “our fatties against theirs” seeming to lean very strongly towards the men from Durban. The Sharks didn’t make enough of that dominance – didn’t force enough set pieces, particularly contestable lineouts – by good tactical kicking and certainly didn’t give the pack enough time, with ball in hand, to grind the opposition down.

That, I sense, is the key to victory over the Crusaders this weekend. Any thoughts of free-flowing, end-to-end counter-attacking rugby must be shelved this week as the Sharks aim to keep the ball as close to the pack as they can at all times. We need to force set pieces – we need to scrum early and scrum often. Let’s hope that by wearing the Crusaders down, we might just expose a chink or two in their armour!


  • Let’s hope that Beast is at his destructive best tomorrow.

  • Comment 1, posted at 16.05.14 12:58:46 by KingRiaan Reply
  • Good article, Scrum only one of set pieces. They will target our lineout, contest heavily for loose ball, discipline as Frans will punish them, SP at the back.

    Another major factor is the ref ?

    JW will certainly have a good game plan. How we execute this will determine the outcome.

    Go Sharks !!!!!

  • Comment 2, posted at 16.05.14 13:05:52 by Observer Reply
  • I do think the key to beat the Saders is the Sharks forwards. They must dominate. Sharks MUST play structured rugby, by playing loose running rugby we will play to the strength of the Saders. Sharks forwards must “hurt and bully” them!!!!

  • Comment 3, posted at 16.05.14 13:39:58 by JD Reply
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  • Makes sense. Would also like to see more rolling mauls particularly in the first half too. Scrum and maul their legs off before bringing in Keegan and Ryan.

  • Comment 4, posted at 16.05.14 13:53:53 by gregkaos Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • We can only hope they underestimate the piss out of us. We can lose here and still win the comp, but win here and we are home free me thinks

  • Comment 5, posted at 16.05.14 14:00:10 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
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    West Indies Cricket Board
  • One more thing. In the event that we’re pushing them on their 5m line and they get a warning for repeated infringements. Please don’t go for poles. I’m not sure why almost all teams have been doing this, as the pressure put on a team that has to work twice as hard to avoid a yellow card and is more often than not worth far more than 3 points.

  • Comment 6, posted at 16.05.14 14:00:52 by gregkaos Reply
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  • Let us just hope that we get a ref on Saturday that doesn’t ping the dominant scrum, as we have seen so many times in the past. It’s of no use scrumming them to the ground, only for the ref to blow his whistle and awarding THEM the penalty. Grinds my gears! 😑

  • Comment 7, posted at 16.05.14 14:06:13 by Another Nick Reply

    Another Nick
  • @Another Nick (Comment 7) : yeah – was actually thinking that as I typed this.

    What’s this Hoffman fellow like as a ref?

  • Comment 8, posted at 16.05.14 14:07:13 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 8) : I have absolutely no idea. He is from SA no? Guess only time will tell..

  • Comment 9, posted at 16.05.14 14:18:15 by Another Nick Reply

    Another Nick
  • @Another Nick (Comment 9) : Just saw is actually from AUS. Rohan Hoffman.. geez, must be an immigrant! πŸ˜†

  • Comment 10, posted at 16.05.14 14:23:02 by Another Nick Reply

    Another Nick
  • @KingRiaan (Comment 1) : “At his destructive beast” some might say πŸ˜‰

  • Comment 11, posted at 16.05.14 14:23:43 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
  • At least there will be no Freuen or Sonny Bill this time around.

    That London affair is still etched into my memory banks.

  • Comment 12, posted at 16.05.14 14:31:25 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • @Another Nick (Comment 10) : I hate it when we get inexperienced refs. They often get very influenced by the home side’s spectators and then all the 50-50 decisions go their way.

  • Comment 13, posted at 16.05.14 14:35:17 by Bokhoring Reply
  • @Seth101 (Comment 11) : Hahaha good one.

  • Comment 14, posted at 16.05.14 14:50:07 by KingRiaan Reply

  • @Another Nick (Comment 10) :
    Although he has an Afrikaans sounding surname he was born in Brisbane 42 years ago; he became a naturalized Portuguese citizen and played for Portugal ( flyhalf and Fullback) between 1994 and 2001) 27 caps in total and according to some was one of the best Portuguese players of his generation, he earned nickname ZΓ© Rohan . I have seen him ref a few matches this season; and while not being great he is not as bad as some I have seen.

  • Comment 15, posted at 16.05.14 14:51:21 by Ragged Reply

  • @Bokhoring (Comment 13) : Ja look, I’m the last person to blame the ref if we perform poor (I leave that to the Bulls supporters! πŸ˜‰ ), but sometimes it’s hard to contain yourself from smashing the tv with your bare hands. If we clearly have the more dominant pack for all to see, how come it’s only the ref that thinks otherwise? Thanks to @Ragged (Comment 15) : it seems this Hoffman guy is not so bad. At least he has played some rugby himself, so hopefully he will understand the player’s point of view.

  • Comment 16, posted at 16.05.14 15:00:58 by Another Nick Reply

    Another Nick
  • @Ragged (Comment 15) : thanx for the info.

  • Comment 17, posted at 16.05.14 15:15:12 by JD Reply
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  • @Another Nick (Comment 16) : ja I really get mad when it seems as if the ref can only point in one direction even if it is obvious that the other team should get the penalty! !!! Hope this week is better.

  • Comment 18, posted at 16.05.14 15:17:00 by JD Reply
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  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 12) : what happened to Freuen?! He was really good especially with SBW and Nonu.

  • Comment 19, posted at 16.05.14 15:18:42 by JD Reply
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  • @Another Nick (Comment 16) : Glen Jackson was a player, and I don’t rate him highly as a ref.

  • Comment 20, posted at 16.05.14 15:21:16 by Bokhoring Reply
  • @JD (Comment 19) : Doesn’t he have some kind of heart problems?

  • Comment 21, posted at 16.05.14 15:31:17 by KingRiaan Reply

  • Leys hope we rip the Crusaders and all the naymobs of negativity on this site a big brand new one tomorrow.
    For me if the Saders need the ref to help them win,then its a victory for us.
    I would just like to see this team play at 80% of it ‘s potential,and where better than in the New Zealand strong hold of Canterbury,if you can win there you can win anywhere.
    I have a strange quiet confidence about tomorrow

  • Comment 22, posted at 16.05.14 15:32:57 by The hound Reply
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    The hound
  • @Bokhoring (Comment 20) : Ja hell that’s true hey! 😯 Here’s to hoping Glen is the exception, rather than the rule. πŸ˜•

  • Comment 23, posted at 16.05.14 15:43:03 by Another Nick Reply

    Another Nick
  • @KingRiaan (Comment 21) : just checked Google you’re correct, seems he had a problem with his heart again. Hope he’s ok and recovers fully! !!!

  • Comment 24, posted at 16.05.14 16:38:02 by JD Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 19) : I’m almost certain he’s with the Chiefs now….probably injured though.

  • Comment 25, posted at 16.05.14 17:05:43 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 25) : yes he’s with the Chiefs now but heart gave problems again in March and he’s still out.

  • Comment 26, posted at 16.05.14 17:59:58 by JD Reply
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  • The key to this game is again going to be the referee and how well he judges the scrums and rucks. The Brumbies got away with murder last week and I expect very little objectivity for tomorrow. Hope I am wrong!!!!

  • Comment 27, posted at 16.05.14 18:14:03 by KILLER SHARK Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter
  • @The hound (Comment 22) : You and everyone, bru. But then there’s the reality of our form, or lack thereof, to consider. A huge pack won’t make much difference to the team dynamic. I’d be ecstatic as you if your dream came true, but the realist im me just can’t see it. Our game and the Crusaders’ are chalk and cheese. Cheese for the win, I’m afraid.

    Our only hope is for us to turn it into a scrap.

  • Comment 28, posted at 16.05.14 20:27:35 by rhineshark Reply
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    Spirit of Rugby
  • @KILLER SHARK (Comment 27) : ja with that said it might be a blessing in disguise that I will once again miss the game!!

  • Comment 29, posted at 16.05.14 21:56:30 by JD Reply
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  • @rhineshark (Comment 28) : drawing the Saders into a scrap is exactly what the Sharks must do!! It would be foolish to try and beat them with an open running game plan as that is what the Saders do best. Go hard at them with that huge pack and be right in their face!!!! GO SHARKS!!!!

  • Comment 30, posted at 16.05.14 22:04:05 by JD Reply
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  • Yes Rob, also think we don’t use our set piece to our advantage, hence I was pissed off at our captain and coaching staff last week. Nic White was allowed to feed the scrum as he liked and no one said a thing about it. Really hope our guys have a plan for this game. A proper plan that will give us a win. Hope the attitudes are also right and that JPP and Jannie actually decide to make a lot of positive contributions.

  • Comment 31, posted at 17.05.14 08:00:30 by GreatSharksays Reply


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