Cape Town - Sharks Director of Rugby is backing his young
guns to do the job in this year’s Currie Cup.
The Durbanites have come out the blocks slow in this year’s
event, losing their first game 33-24 to the Pumas in Nelspruit, before earning
a hard-fought 33-25 win over the EP Kings in Durban last week.
But Gold believes his young side will develop as the
tournament progresses - and he will be backing them.
“Throwing the young players into the thick of things is the
only way they are going to develop, it’s all about game-time and either sinking
or swimming,” Gold told the Sharks’ official website. “One such player is 20-year-old Thomas du Toit who is now being developed as a tighthead prop, and a
wonderful prospect for the future.”
Gold said Du Toit simply must be backed.
“Thomas is a 130kg piece of meat and he is going to be a
great rugby player, but he has learning to do. However, I am happy to put him
in the deep end and this is where he must learn because you can’t say you are
going to back youngsters and then chuck them out with the bath water.”
Another youthful prospect is 23-year-old looseheaed prop Juan
Schoeman who Gold rates highly.
“Juan is a fantastic athlete of over 120kgs. He is very
fast, very young and his work rate is very high. He’s had little top class
rugby but his pedigree is there, his brother was SA schools captain and is a
loose forward at the Bulls.
“He, Thomas and Gerhard (Engelbrecht) have the attitude I am
looking for and excited about.”
Backing the youth means Gold accepts that the team cannot
start off as the finished product, but will develop and grow as the players
“I am brutally honest in that we are going to have a tough
learning curve, but in a few months they will have played all over the country;
I back them and they are going to come good.”
In their next assignment, the Sharks tackle the Golden Lions at Kings Park this coming Saturday (17:05 kick-off).