Vodacom Super 14

Sharks need to move on

2010-02-15 17:26
John Plumtree (Gallo Images)

Johannesburg - The manner in which the Sharks conceded a devastating defeat to the Chiefs would have left them utterly gutted on Saturday evening, but there's no room to dwell on disappointing results in a competition as intense as the Super 14.

The Sharks will know that they need to move on, and move on quickly, with a short turn-around this week as they face their bogey team, the Cheetahs, on Friday night at the Absa Stadium.

Unfortunately, they will be without lock Gerhard Mostert who reportedly dislocated his shoulder in Saturday's game and is likely to be out for some time, but the good news is that Ruan Pienaar should be ready to make a return to the starting line-up.

The talented Springbok came off the bench on Saturday, slotting into the flyhalf berth, and is set to get some more game-time in that position after Steve Meyer's shock retirement last week.

Plumtree lamented their one-point defeat after Saturday night's encounter, but said he believed they would "bounce back".

"We can't afford to lose those kinds of games, we had the game in the bag with 15 seconds remaining but we didn't get what we wanted out of it in the end, so it was very disappointing... It's tough, but it's only round one, we'll bounce back. The worst part is possibly losing one of our locks, we were looking forward to Gerhard playing a bigger role in games to come."

Nevertheless, they'll need to regroup and produce something special against the Cheetahs, with the team from Bloemfontein always capable of causing an upset.

"This is going to be a close Super 14." Plumtree commented. "There have been some close games over the weekend and it's going to be hard to pick, anyone can beat anyone else and that makes it a good competition."

Chiefs coach Ian Foster said he felt for the Sharks after their narrow win, but was nonetheless thrilled to have kicked their season off on a winning note.

"The last two minutes were typical in the life of a professional coach. Plum and I went through the same emotions, but in a different order. I was proud of the determination shown from our side. It was tough for the Sharks to lose in that position, but great for us to win it."


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