Double duty all in a day’s work for Tera

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 20 May 2014 at 11:41
Tagged with : , , , , , , ,

Asked to play the “Swiss Army knife” role for the Sharks last weekend, loose forward Tera Mtembu found himself covering a lot of ground indeed against the Crusaders, at one point being the only loose forward on the field for the visitors. We caught up with the likable Dalian for a chat earlier today.

“Luckily, if you remember we also got two cards against Saracens in the first half, so I was the only loose forward then too and had a bit of a chance to get used to it!” Tera quips. “Obviously I had to work a lot harder than I was supposed to – it was tough but it was a good experience and I enjoyed it.”

Despite being primarily a number 8, Mtembu has been picked more regularly in the number 6 jersey by Sharks coach Jake White this season. “For me, at the moment, I’ll play wherever I’m needed, ” he tells us. “I have a preferred position, but if I’m needed at open side, blind side, number 8 or even lock – I’ll do anything to stay in the team.”

And does he think that his heroics against the Crusaders were enough to make that opens ide position his for another week? “I don’t know hey – we’ll see what happens! Whether I get two minutes or 80 minutes, I’ll play to the best of my abilities.”

Looking ahead to Friday’s challenge in North Harbour, Tera tells us “The Blues are a different team – they are dangerous, they can beat anyone on a given day. We’ll have to kick well, defend well and take our opportunities. If we don’t play well and slip tackles, they will punish us from unstructured play. We need to be organised this week – we’re preparing well and looking forward to it.”

“It’s been a long four weeks, ” he says, looking back on the tour as a whole, “I remember my first tour last year – we only won our last game. This time it’s a bit different, having won two games out of three so far, so I’m enjoying it a bit more. I’m looking forward to coming home, but it’s also good to get away from Durbs a bit, get to know the players and bond with guys that I’ve never chilled with before.”

One such player is room mate Tim Swiel, for whom Tera has nothing but praise. “Timmy did very well for us on the weekend. He had a bit of a shaky start and was really looking forward to putting in good performance for us – the fact that it came in a place like Christchurch, where we’ve never won before and he was so calm and so good under pressure just made it better. He was great.”

Tera tells us that it was in fact cricket, nor rugby, that first captured his heart. “Since I was about 10 I wanted to become a professional cricketer and that lasted until I was in grade 11 and I played at the Kearsney tournament and was offered a spot at the Sharks Academy. It’s pretty tough to get a professional contract as a cricketer, though.

“I’ve lost it a little bit – ” he concedes. “When we played the Dolphins, I was bowling off a five-pace run up, rather than 20 like I used to! ”

We’d like to thank Tera for his time and wish him and the team all the best for the game on Friday. A big thanks to the Sharks, as always, for arranging the interview.


  • I love this guys, him and Marcel are the future at loosie for the Sharks and Boks.

  • Comment 1, posted at 20.05.14 11:46:34 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
  • I take it there was no need for you to dress seductively or compromise your morals to get this story then, Rob?

  • Comment 2, posted at 20.05.14 11:49:01 by Culling Song Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
    Culling Song
  • @Seth101 (Comment 1) : Agreed. I feel he is our best option at #8 right now. Think our best loosies going into the business end of super rugby are 6) marcel 7) alberts 8) tera

  • Comment 3, posted at 20.05.14 11:58:19 by woody Reply
  • Tera is on fire and deserves another chance for sure.

    I might have missed it somewhere but how long is Marcel expected to be out?

  • Comment 4, posted at 20.05.14 12:03:43 by Pokkel Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Author
  • @Pokkel (Comment 4) : Should be back for the Stormers game

  • Comment 5, posted at 20.05.14 12:05:29 by woody Reply
  • Tera you are a Machine!! Is there a more beautiful thing in sport than when a guy patiently waits for his chance and then GRABS it?

  • Comment 6, posted at 20.05.14 12:06:19 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
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  • Great stuff Tera! Another player who excelled after he got backed by the coach. And not just any coach.. JW! Bok in the making this.. 🙂

  • Comment 7, posted at 20.05.14 12:10:18 by Another Nick Reply

    Another Nick
  • The thing with Jake is, I feel if and when he leaves he will leave us in better shape than when he came. Would we have “found” Lewies, Sbura, Tera, Lwazi at 15 under previous attitude? I think not. Just look how a guy like Chadwick has stepped up suddenly. I dont want to go all cheesy but what Jake and JS are doing now is not simply building a winning team, but a dynasty like what the Bulls and Crusaders had. I ARE LOVING IT

  • Comment 8, posted at 20.05.14 12:11:41 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
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  • @woody (Comment 3) : On current form I agree as well!!!

    However if Kanko pulls finger and plays HIS game and not an ordered style then I would go.

    6. Marcell
    7. Tera
    8. Kanko

    Pace, power, skill, intelligent…and not short on bulk with all over 105kg if not mistaken??

  • Comment 9, posted at 20.05.14 12:15:16 by pienaar111 Reply

  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 8) : Could not have said it better. JS (And BV actually) said repeatedly they want to create a culture outside of rugby that put people first. An environment where players are more than just team-mates on a Saturday. I feel JS and JW are doing just that. You get the feeling when the guys play a game they are playing FOR each other. Not WITH each other. Saturday’s game against the Saders is proof enough. Dare I say we are entering a golden era…? I certainly think so! 😀

  • Comment 10, posted at 20.05.14 12:18:37 by Another Nick Reply

    Another Nick
  • @Another Nick (Comment 10) : I think so too, and it takes balls thats the thing. Backing a guy like Lewies with line out calls, switching Mvovo to fullback, and Sithole to 13. All these moves are now being called masterstrokes, but it could have gone the other way if the culture and trust wasnt there. Oh, and the balls 😎 😀 😀

  • Comment 11, posted at 20.05.14 12:27:16 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
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  • Tera the omnipresent loosie :mrgreen:

    Congrats on a great performance!

  • Comment 12, posted at 20.05.14 12:30:00 by vanmartin Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • @pienaar111 (Comment 9) : You can never leave out Alberts

  • Comment 13, posted at 20.05.14 12:33:45 by woody Reply
  • Im glad he mentions Swiel. I think those few minutes he had will have done him the world of good. Good on JW for having the confidence to give him a sho in such a high pressure situation and good on TS for having the nerve to come through.

  • Comment 14, posted at 20.05.14 12:35:22 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 11) : :mrgreen: :mrgreen: And the balls of course!

  • Comment 15, posted at 20.05.14 12:38:38 by Another Nick Reply

    Another Nick
  • Tera, one of my favorite Sharks players at the moment, he has got all the qualities to go all the way, big, strong, fast, intelligent and great hands.

    Looking forward to seeing more of him in black and white and then green and gold.

  • Comment 16, posted at 20.05.14 12:45:53 by Bump Reply

  • @West Indies Cricket Board(Comment8)Lets not give all the credit to JW with regards to some players you mentioned.
    1.Lewies played in the CC cup last year(discovered by Venter) 😀
    2.Tera already showed his progress in last year’s SR.
    Props to improving Sbura and Lwazi to almost international top quality and Marcel for that matter. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 17, posted at 20.05.14 12:48:03 by Chippa Reply

  • Tera was huge on Saturday hope he can do it again on Friday!!!!!!!

  • Comment 18, posted at 20.05.14 12:48:49 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • @woody (Comment 13) : I just did…all brawn no brain. Not a fan of that approach.

  • Comment 19, posted at 20.05.14 13:00:35 by pienaar111 Reply

  • @woody (Comment 13) : but I wont be too disappointed if he was there

  • Comment 20, posted at 20.05.14 13:08:28 by pienaar111 Reply

  • @pienaar111 (Comment 19) : As good as Tera, Marcel and Kanko are, none of them can tackle players backwards or get the forward momentum with ball in hand that Alberts can

  • Comment 21, posted at 20.05.14 13:11:40 by woody Reply
  • @woody (Comment 21) : When running straight at people then yeah I agree. All 3 of those however, have far superior pace and therefore would be more difficult to shut down.

    I see the value in size make no mistake, but that cant be all they offer. For instance, if you have been watching the Tahs you’d notice that Jacques Potgieter has been exceptional!!! Always had the bulk and physicality, but never been coached the skills of the game. Now he is bending the line and creating for others!!!

    And coming from someone who wrote his Bok career off entirely I cannot believe he was not included!!!1

  • Comment 22, posted at 20.05.14 13:16:46 by pienaar111 Reply

  • I understand what you’re saying. I also never rated potgieter but with the tahs giving him more licence to play, he has been great this season

  • Comment 23, posted at 20.05.14 13:20:49 by woody Reply
  • @woody (Comment 21) : Coetzee does. Possibly the most explosive player in the country.

    I like the idea of Terra, Alberts/Kanko and Coetzee.

  • Comment 24, posted at 20.05.14 13:28:58 by Talent Reply
  • I see Pieter Muller gave Terra a poor rating 🙄
    In a game where we were two looseforwards down, against the worlds supposed best player ever, he stood up well. Richie was nowhere.

  • Comment 25, posted at 20.05.14 13:30:54 by Talent Reply
  • @woody (Comment 23) : Ja so Im including a tactical change in approach in that criticism!! If they want to continue stampcar then by all means pick him

  • Comment 26, posted at 20.05.14 13:37:09 by pienaar111 Reply

  • 6 Tera
    7 Alberts
    8 Kanko

    That trio will do just fine against the Blues trio. Particularly with the tight 5 that played last weekend.

    Its the Blues backs im more concerned about. Their back 3 are far more potent than the Crusaders back 3 so if we kick poorly, they’ll be all over it.

  • Comment 27, posted at 20.05.14 14:02:22 by John Galt Reply

    John Galt
  • @John Galt (Comment 27) : not a bad loose trio, with Keegan and Botes in reserve.

  • Comment 28, posted at 20.05.14 15:04:57 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • I just love how the mood on this site has changed completely in a week. 🙂 We still have A LOT of work to do if we want to win the competition. Hope the work is being put in and that JW is focusing on our weak points during practice. We showed a big amount of character against the Crusaders but that was the first time I’ve seen it this season. We weren’t playing for each other and for the jersey in previous games or that’s how it seemed to me at least. Come on Sharkies, play for that beautiful black and white jersey and be proud to be a Shark – the best rugby team in the world. Sharks forever! 😎

  • Comment 29, posted at 20.05.14 19:26:00 by Ben Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • To be honest, I couldn’t care less what happens to the Springboks with Heyneke Meyer at the helm. Sharks are far more important to me. Here’s hoping Heyneke rests all of the Sharks players during the Springbok games so that none of them run the risk of getting injured. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 30, posted at 20.05.14 19:32:54 by Ben Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • @Ben (Comment 29) : ja how things can change in a few days. Complain complain complain and one game later all is wonderful and JW is king of the world!! Sharks still needs to focus and play well after the great performance against the Saders as a victory against the Blues will give the Sharks a huge edge on the combined log and will surely put them out of reach of the Bulls in the SA conference.

  • Comment 31, posted at 20.05.14 19:50:47 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • @JD (Comment 31) : 180 degree swing on this site. 🙄 😆

  • Comment 32, posted at 20.05.14 20:15:01 by Ben Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • @Ben (Comment 32) : but after a performance like that it’s no wonder, just hope it’s not back to bitching after Friday!!!!!

  • Comment 33, posted at 20.05.14 20:21:34 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • @JD (Comment 33) : I’m sure if we lose on Friday it will be back to business as usual on this site… :mrgreen:

  • Comment 34, posted at 20.05.14 20:37:07 by Ben Reply
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  • @Ben (Comment 34) : ja and I expect nothing less of some of these supporters.

  • Comment 35, posted at 20.05.14 21:01:13 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • 3 week ban for Deysel….up to and including 7 June…

  • Comment 36, posted at 21.05.14 07:01:38 by grant10 Reply

  • @grant10 (Comment 36) : Probably the fairest call SANZAR could make considering his impeccable disciplinary record.

  • Comment 37, posted at 21.05.14 07:18:20 by The Great Couch Shark Reply
    The Great Couch Shark
  • In other news Jordan Taufua has been offered a WWE Wrestling Contract after pulling off a spectacular act of fakery on Saturday. WWE Chairman Gorilla Monsoon enthused: “He looked for all money to have a serious injury, but as soon as the card was delivered, he jumped up to his feet and played out the rest of the game like a trojan!” They say cheaters never prosper, and it certainly looked that way after Taufua knocked the ball on with an open try line waiting for him. But Cheatsader legend, Richie McCaw urged the public to give Taufua time. “Provoking players and then writhing on the floor like a p**sy is just one of the tools of the trade I’ve passed onto the guys. In time Jordan will learn how to constantly be offsides in the rucks, obstruct players chasing up-and-unders, hold onto the jerseys of players at the scrums, whinge to referees so they take your side and of course the All Black favourite: clearing players so far off the tackle area that you create a gap a boeing could fly through!” McCaw says he learnt about sportsmanship from watching the Italian soccer league.

  • Comment 38, posted at 21.05.14 07:36:20 by The Great Couch Shark Reply
    The Great Couch Shark
  • @Ben (Comment 29) : It would have been in bad taste after such a victory to harp about poor play.

    The Sharks conceded 27 turnovers (according to rugbyheaven’s match stats) and still managed to win. Perhaps what was different this time is that some of the few chances they got, they managed to convert.

  • Comment 39, posted at 21.05.14 07:55:53 by Bokhoring Reply

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