Sharks keep it steady

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 29 Mar 2018 at 10:10
Tagged with : ,

The Sharks team named to face the Blues in Auckland this weekend features just three changes to the side that took a proper old hammering in Melbourne the week before.

Robert du Preez has opted to give his team a shot at redemption this week, resisting the urge to make sweeping modifications to the lineup. Suspended Jacques Vermeulen drops out of the pack, with Philip van der Walt coming in to wear the number 6 jersey after joining the tour party this week.

The only other changes to the starting team sees Andre Esterhuizen back from injury to start at 12 and Chiliboy Ralepelle come in at hooker.

Marius Louw makes way for Esterhuizen, moving to number 22 on the bench and forcing kobus van Wyk into 23, with Garth April dropping out. Injured Wian Vosloo’s bench spot goes to Tyler Paul in the only other shift.

Sharks: 15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Louis Schreuder, 8 Tera Mtembu, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Philip van der Walt, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Ruan Botha (captain), 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 1 Beast Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16 Franco Marais, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 John-Hubert Meyer, 19 Hyron Andrews, 20 Tyler Paul, 21 Cameron Wright, 22 Marius Louw, 23 Kobus van Wyk


  • Same 8 and 9, seriously

  • Comment 1, posted at 29.03.18 10:13:11 by RuckingFun Reply
  • Mapimpi excluded again? Gosh, he must really enjoy his move to Durban.

  • Comment 2, posted at 29.03.18 10:15:45 by boertjie101 Reply
  • Glad to see April dropped! Was far to good when coming on last week and we cant have someone you know upstaging the coaches son(seriously who gets upstaged by Garth April).

  • Comment 3, posted at 29.03.18 10:20:08 by Byron Wright Reply
  • I’m so disappointed…steady and conservative is good in the right context…Thomas at 3!? Tera and Schreuder starting? One good thing I see is Esterhuizen back. With Philip and Jean-Luc, loose forwards looking better. Lwazi looked like he found himself in the right areas to get over the try line last week, so he’s not a bad option. As ‘Oom Rugby’ alluded to:, the Sharks defensive organisation is shot to poop – aggressive but not organised – and we could concede a lot of points. Could we score a lot of points? With the front row as it stands, not sure we would have dominance or parity to set up go-forward. Same mistakes, at least to my uneducated point-of-view.

  • Comment 4, posted at 29.03.18 10:21:14 by SeanJeff Reply
  • This is the last week where we can potentially turn things around I truly hope we do.

  • Comment 5, posted at 29.03.18 10:22:00 by Byron Wright Reply

  • I would have played Meyer, Paul(for Botha) and had Keegan overseas for Terra( April on the bench because he can be terrible or great and bad teams need those players) . We don’t even have a proper loose forward on the bench but there is no space for keegan? Is this a SANZAAR rule with the number of players in touring sqauds thing?

  • Comment 6, posted at 29.03.18 10:27:17 by Byron Wright Reply

  • Tera and Schreuder again… 🙄 After the last 2 games I can’t understand how those guys are still starting. Tera shouldn’t even be in the 23!

    Well at least Ninja and JLdP are on the field as well. Don’t see us beating this Blues team. They are a very motivated unit this year. Tana’s doing a good job with the so called ‘worst’ NZ team.

  • Comment 7, posted at 29.03.18 10:32:14 by Quintin Reply

  • Seriously….why not start with Cameron?? Tank is really damaging his career at 3…would have put the big red at 8….bench Tera and played Tyler at 6. Hope something starts happening!!

  • Comment 8, posted at 29.03.18 10:38:29 by EugeneVT Reply
  • The Sharks are gonna kak in this game. 😉

  • Comment 9, posted at 29.03.18 10:43:59 by Ben Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • @SeanJeff (Comment 4) : I read somewhere that Nienaber is spending (has spent) some time on tour with the Sharks – normally a very good defensive coach. The defensive display does not seem to allude to that – so maybe those rumours were nonsense.

    3 and to a lesser extent 9 will start the rot that sink the team again.

  • Comment 10, posted at 29.03.18 10:46:22 by Bokhoring Reply
  • Ron Snr said at the start of the comp that there is a lot of competition for spots in the team and players would have to prove themselves. He seems to be rewarding mediocrity with Tera and Shreuder. I would give those guys 30 min to prove they can do something and if not…bench time.

    Akira Ione is going to murder us off the back of the scrum if it moves backwards.

  • Comment 11, posted at 29.03.18 10:50:46 by Keagan_Sharks Reply

  • @Bokhoring (Comment 10) : Everyone can see the Thomas at 3 boondoggle is a mistake. The cognitive dissonance is strong with the guys in charge. And I agree about 9 too…Schreuder kicks from the base of the ruck with the regularity of a metronome. Never runs or passes. Sometimes your tactic can be to kick, but every flipping time I see him doing the kick. Other teams mix it up, if only to keep the opposition guessing.

  • Comment 12, posted at 29.03.18 10:54:45 by SeanJeff Reply
  • @SeanJeff (Comment 12) : His service was a bit better in this last game, but I feel its time to let Cam start (need someone to energize the team) and let Louis regain his form from the bench.

  • Comment 13, posted at 29.03.18 10:56:22 by Bokhoring Reply
  • I wasn’t going to repeat everyone’s sentiments here but I just can not leave this unsaid. Continuing Thomas at 3 has now become ridiculous bordering on the insane. He may not be the only problem with the pack but it is clear Meyer brings more stability. If we must continue the Thomas tighthead experiment we need to do so using him from the bench. Schreuder was sublime in the CC but has offered a poor imitation of that in SR, Wright brings pace and energy and has earned his starting spot. Terra at 8? Vermuelen is banned and Vosloo injured so we don’t have anyone else, that must be it. Surely there is no other reason! Granted we could have flown a replacement in, you know Keegan. Yes he cocked up against the Waratahs but geez, are we now leaving him out of the remainder of the tournament as punishment???
    Last rant is Nkosi at 14. He looks lost there and is an out and out 11. Don’t move him. I’d rather bench Nkosi and play van Wyk at 14 than the other way round.

    Hope the boys do something this weekend. We have a proud history at Eden Park, would love to keep it alive.

  • Comment 14, posted at 29.03.18 11:35:44 by Hulk Reply

  • Tera Mtembu …?????!!! Seriously …? Again …? There are school number 8’s that play better than Tera … he is a passenger in the team and does nothing to deserve his place … I’ve watched him on the field — he runs around (rather slowly), but does very little and contributes nothing …

    Louis Schreuder is either not totally fit yet, or he only had a brief moment of brilliance during the Currie Cup season, but at the moment he is pathetic and does not deserve his spot in the team …

    Thomas du Toit played well since he started representing the Sharks … not brilliant (yet) — maybe because of his young age —- but his rugby career is being damaged tremendously by moving him to number 3 … He is a mere shadow of the player he was during the previous 2 years … Is it fair to him? Is it fair to the Sharks team ? Is it fair to us, the Sharks supporters ?

    We, as the Sharks supporters, have been very patient over the last few years … every year being told that we are in a building phase and that we have a young team, etc., etc. ….. how long must we remain patient ? Does it take 5 years to build a team? I love the Sharks and will keep on supporting the team, but I am getting rather impatient now …. and it does not help (my state of mind) that I live in the Western Cape and that I’m surrounded by Stormers supporters …. 🙄 😆 😀

    When will the Sharks succeed? When will they make us proud again?

  • Comment 15, posted at 29.03.18 11:38:21 by swan Reply

  • @Hulk (Comment 14) : All vaild gripes and as you say not new gripes either. What are your thoughts on April being dropped? I thought he looked good coming on last week.

  • Comment 16, posted at 29.03.18 11:39:04 by Byron Wright Reply

  • Not too sure what to think of this team selection. On paper they are good players but on the field they just arent performing. Players that have looked good on the field have been excluded or benched.

  • Comment 17, posted at 29.03.18 11:43:26 by SheldonK Reply

  • What’s that adage about doing things the same and expecting different results? At least Ninja is in and phew! Glad ole Essie is ok and ready to rumble.

  • Comment 18, posted at 29.03.18 12:01:11 by coolfusion Reply

  • I’m not at all positive about tommorow. Seems Rob will not learn or listen. Tera out Thomas maybe as impact but Meyer should start. How much more must Wright do to prove he is currently better option. Ginger good move not bringing Keegan back bad move. I agree regarding wing placement ffs you have a good weapon in Nkosi but you choose to make it hard for him. Is Rob du Preez even paying attention?

  • Comment 19, posted at 29.03.18 12:06:37 by coolfusion Reply

  • @SheldonK (Comment 17) : Coach seems to have a pecking order based on seniority. It helps to have old hands on deck (although apart from Beast the old hands at the Sharks seem disinterested), however sometimes you need to reward the players that show form right now.

  • Comment 20, posted at 29.03.18 12:09:05 by Bokhoring Reply
  • @Bokhoring (Comment 20) : Coach seems to have a learning impediment. Or maybe he has no clue how to deploy his men. Maybe he is trying to get fired.

  • Comment 21, posted at 29.03.18 12:16:54 by coolfusion Reply

  • @swan (Comment 15) : I feel your pain, it’s tough wearing your Sharks kit to Newlands, or in fact anywhere, particularly when the stormers have racked up a few wins now
    at home and the Sharks are having a dry season, again

  • Comment 22, posted at 29.03.18 12:33:18 by SeanJeff Reply
  • All I can say is that I agree with all of you about Tera and Luis. Wright must start and bring back daniels asap. I thinks I will drown my sorrows with allot of beer like the previous 5 weeks. Cheers

  • Comment 23, posted at 29.03.18 12:43:47 by osbal Reply

  • Same 3, 8 and 9 ….. we most def are in the clueless coach era once again.

  • Comment 24, posted at 29.03.18 13:01:30 by Mephisto_Shark Reply

  • @Byron Wright (Comment 16) :

    Coach would have to be mental to consider starting April instead of RdP.

    What I would change is get Curwin to kick penalties for touch instead of RdP, kicking out of hand is one of the reasons I was excited about Curwin joining the Sharks.

  • Comment 25, posted at 29.03.18 13:33:49 by jonnow Reply

  • Ja well yes!!! The less said the better!!!
    Really not even sure if I’m going to watch the game!!!

  • Comment 26, posted at 29.03.18 14:03:59 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • @boertjie101 (Comment 2) : Mapimpi has played 15 months of rugby with absolutely no break. He could certainly use some time off. Let him enjoy his holiday, and come back stronger.

  • Comment 27, posted at 29.03.18 14:18:37 by Dancing Bear Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Dancing Bear
  • @Bokhoring (Comment 10) : Nieneber is on tour with the Sharks. I just don’t think you fix a frail defence in 4 weeks on the road. So many other things for the Sharks to work on, leaving less time for defence. Glad he is with them, but we need a strong full time defensive coach.

  • Comment 28, posted at 29.03.18 14:22:09 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 28) :

    While you’re about it, we also need a decent forwards coach.

  • Comment 29, posted at 29.03.18 14:28:29 by jonnow Reply

  • @jonnow (Comment 29) : I have been refraining from entering the fray of the Thomas at 3 discussion. However, as an old front rower, I have to make one comment. I was a short tighthead, and that brings all kinds of advantages (Redlinghuis was amazing), but Thomas is tall, and his technique as a tall 3 is poor. If I were to coach him, I would get him to drop his hips very low on the crouch call, he really has to focus on this, weight balanced and crouch low. Right now his feet are too far back, and he falls into the loosehead on the engage., I would like to see him start low, and come up under the loosehead on the engage. If he can keep his right shoulder low, the loosehead can’t get under him like they do now, and anyone is easy to push when upright . Just my opinion.

  • Comment 30, posted at 29.03.18 14:34:07 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 26) : Would like to hear your thoughts on @Dancing Bear (Comment 30) :

  • Comment 31, posted at 29.03.18 14:42:44 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 28) : It seems its not even the full 4 weeks – just a couple of training sessions.

  • Comment 32, posted at 29.03.18 15:42:27 by Bokhoring Reply
  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 28) : Only spent a few sessions with the Sharks. He was at the Lions today

  • Comment 33, posted at 29.03.18 16:47:42 by Baylion Reply

  • @Baylion (Comment 33) : Looks like he’s scouting maybe or assessing. We failed…;)

  • Comment 34, posted at 29.03.18 16:56:38 by coolfusion Reply

  • May have been better to have mvovo on 14 Nkosi on 11. Van Wyk bench for them.

  • Comment 35, posted at 29.03.18 17:24:11 by coolfusion Reply

  • @coolfusion (Comment 34) : Probably assessing and advising

  • Comment 36, posted at 29.03.18 18:03:33 by Baylion Reply

  • @Bokhoring (Comment 32) : @Baylion (Comment 33) : Oh well in that case I feel much better about it. 😯 :mrgreen:

  • Comment 37, posted at 29.03.18 19:31:11 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 37) : Although judging by the amount of territory we lose in each game , to me it points to defensive issues at the front more than the back.

  • Comment 38, posted at 29.03.18 19:42:54 by coolfusion Reply

  • Blues by 20

  • Comment 39, posted at 30.03.18 07:23:00 by Poisy Reply
  • Easter weekend in Durban, beautiful rugby weather, town full of tourists including the country’s best rugby schools and supporters for the Kearsney festival, and once again third Easter in a row Sharks are not playing.
    And the morons running rugby in this province wonder why the brand is fading,.
    if ever there was a golden opportunity to bring people the ground its got to be on this weekend.
    But rest assured Sharks will be doing their bit to pack the crowds into the Easter weekend rugby in Auckland.

  • Comment 40, posted at 30.03.18 07:45:01 by The hound Reply
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  • @The hound (Comment 40) : Would probably be a lovely event for the Durban faithful…its just that 2015 Easter is seared into my memory where the Sharks had a home game against the Crusaders and folded like a cheap suit, 52 – 10. In fact, I’m thinking of it now in the build-up to tomorrow’s game.

  • Comment 41, posted at 30.03.18 11:43:12 by SeanJeff Reply
  • Meanwhile, in proper rugby country, the Hurricanes just annihilated the Rebels 50-19.

  • Comment 42, posted at 30.03.18 12:50:39 by Spirit of Rugby Reply
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  • @Poisy (Comment 39) : Ja I expect them to get close to 40.

  • Comment 43, posted at 30.03.18 13:10:37 by coolfusion Reply

  • @coolfusion (Comment 43) : Will that make you feel happy and vindicated,

  • Comment 44, posted at 30.03.18 13:14:24 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
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  • @The hound (Comment 44) : Now I’ll make it 45. Keep pushing and it will be 50

  • Comment 45, posted at 30.03.18 15:13:31 by coolfusion Reply

  • @Spirit of Rugby (Comment 42) : Cane’s looking dangerous past 2 games. Brilliant finishing. Expect to see them pushing for top spot.

  • Comment 46, posted at 30.03.18 15:30:29 by coolfusion Reply

  • @coolfusion (Comment 45) : What a brutal armchair warrior you are

  • Comment 47, posted at 30.03.18 15:53:37 by The hound Reply
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  • @The hound (Comment 47) : As opposed to you, mighty mover and shaker…..?

  • Comment 48, posted at 30.03.18 15:58:52 by coolfusion Reply

  • @coolfusion (Comment 48) : No just a long time loyal Sharks supporter who always wishes the best for his team, and sticks by them when the chips are down as opposed to a fair-weather supporter who joyfully sticks the boot in at the first sign of a crisis.
    You are so fucken predictable, brave keyboard warrior.
    Please I have nothing further to say to you i will end this conversation here, and I will be hoping i always do when the Sharks run on the field tomorrow for a black and white victory, and if they get beaten by however much I will be hoping for the same thing the next week.

  • Comment 49, posted at 30.03.18 16:23:31 by The hound Reply
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    The hound
  • @The hound (Comment 49) : I think we all wish the best for our team…personally (although probably foolishly) I imagine that somewhere or somehow a Sharks player or coach may read what we write here, and that in times like this when a win seems like hope more than reasonable expectation, that our light criticism or observations may goad them to action, or inspire them to prove our fears wrong. I like to think of myself as a loyal Sharks supporter, but I can’t deny what I see Saturdays week-in and week-out. I take no joy when the Sharks lose, frankly, it messes up my sleep pattern Saturday night going into Sunday morning and messes up my week too.

  • Comment 50, posted at 30.03.18 16:40:41 by SeanJeff Reply
  • @SeanJeff (Comment 50) : There is a very simple solution to the problem stop watching,I honestly don’t think that any player pulls on that jersey believing that the oposition is going to win by 40,and no real supporter can believe that either.
    You cannot profess to being a honest Sharks supporter and believe that the opposition will win by 40,
    only a masochistic arsehole would believe that.
    You have to truly hate the Sharks to want them to lose, and seriously hate them to want it to be by 40.

  • Comment 51, posted at 30.03.18 17:32:30 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
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  • @The hound (Comment 49) : Calm down toppie…just messing with you. Of course anyone still commenting here and watching every game still hopes they will win.

  • Comment 52, posted at 30.03.18 17:40:07 by coolfusion Reply

  • @SeanJeff (Comment 50) : Going by log stats blues are performing almost at our current disasterous level so there might be chance…

  • Comment 53, posted at 30.03.18 17:42:58 by coolfusion Reply

  • Looked like the first time in many years the Ozzie’s had a decent team going with the rebels. But I recon Cane’s will overtake them

  • Comment 54, posted at 30.03.18 17:56:16 by coolfusion Reply

  • @The hound (Comment 51) : Can’t stop watching, I’m a Sharks supporter, remember 🙂 . And no way in ‘h’ ‘e’ ‘double hockey-sticks’ would I ever take joy in watching the Sharks lose. That’s far different from trying to be realistic in evaluating where the team is at right now. Desire and inspiration can only get a team so far. What I’m saying is that there is clearly a problem, and we can’t ignore it. Gary Teichman remarked this week that he believes in the potential of the team, and so do all of us. The potential remains largely unrealized this season so far, which is why we’re crying into our corn flakes, and which explains our frustration, including yours Hound. So, let’s see what happens tomorrow.

  • Comment 55, posted at 30.03.18 18:07:57 by SeanJeff Reply
  • @The hound (Comment 51) : And anyway, 40 was the number that Coolfusion came up with. I have no idea what will really happen tomorrow; the Sharks have often surprised.

  • Comment 56, posted at 30.03.18 18:10:14 by SeanJeff Reply
  • @coolfusion (Comment 53) : That’s probably the only reason we stand a chance.The Blues are about as inconsistent as us and every year looks like things might change but they never do..

  • Comment 57, posted at 30.03.18 18:26:52 by Spirit of Rugby Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Spirit of Rugby
  • someone needs to get off they high horse around here being all judgy all the fucking time.

  • Comment 58, posted at 30.03.18 22:00:05 by Poisy Reply
  • Sharks better find some shape or especially next week is going to be really embarrassing

  • Comment 59, posted at 31.03.18 08:29:19 by Bokhoring Reply
  • @Bokhoring (Comment 59) : I’m expecting vd Walt and Jldp to light a fire. Bow if we only had a competent nr 8 to play with them.

  • Comment 60, posted at 31.03.18 08:49:26 by coolfusion Reply

  • @SeanJeff (Comment 50) : LOL, i doubt that any professional player or coach will be suicidal or desparate enough to look for “advise” or inspiration in any form of media!

  • Comment 61, posted at 31.03.18 10:59:42 by Rienke36 Reply

  • @Rienke36 (Comment 61) : But they could use it to assess the overall mood of the fans.

  • Comment 62, posted at 31.03.18 11:25:00 by coolfusion Reply


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