Johannesburg - Sharks coach John Plumtree has made no excuses for his side's 15-22 Currie Cup loss to Griquas in Kimberley on Saturday and laid the loss at the feet of his backline.
The Durban-based side struggled from the get go and never managed to breach the Peacock Blues' solid defensive structure.
The Sharks' only points in the game came via the boot of centre Meyer Bosman, a sad reminder that the visitors just didn't pitch mentally and physically.
"Our backline just played way to lateral. Our forwards made the hard yards, but we let ourselves down. Credit must go to Griquas. They dominated in the first half, and were the more hungry side in the last 40 minutes.
The Sharks last won a Currie Cup game in Kimberley in 2009 and their loss marks the third year in a row that they couldn't best Griquas on home soil.
Plumtree acknowledged how good Griquas are at home, and he sung Bosman's praises for his kicking performance, but as a whole the visitors were left with a lot of work to do before they take on Western Province next weekend.
"Meyer again produced a solid kicking performance. But our backline struggled the whole afternoon. We had some good defence at times, but Griquas countered us. We knew they're a difficult outfit in Kimberley. And they proved it once again," Plumtree said.
Griquas coach Pote Human was a happy man after his side managed their second victory in this year's competition, but admitted that discipline was a real problem.
"We have a lot of respect for the Sharks and the type of rugby they play. We knew that our game wouldn't be a walk in the park, regardless of what happened in the past. They came to Kimberley to collect maximum points and we managed to stop them from doing so. Our defence was simply outstanding," Human said.
The coach was however, not impressed with the penalties his side conceded. The Kimberley-based side's infringements are the only reason why the Sharks got onto the scoreboard.
"Our ill discipline nearly cost us dearly. We gave away to many penalties, especially at the breakdowns. That is something we must remedy before we take on the Blue Bulls next weekend in Kimberley," Human added.