Vodacom Super Rugby
Hargreaves out for three weeks
Gavin Rich - SuperSport
Alistair Hargreaves (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - Sharks lock Alistair Hargreaves will be out of rugby for three weeks as a result of the shoulder injury that he picked up in the Super Rugby clash with the Stormers in Durban last weekend.
Hargreaves went to see a specialist and had his troublesome shoulder X-rayed on Monday and results of the scan were made available on Tuesday morning.
“Alistair has suffered a hairline fracture of the AC joint and will be out for two to three weeks,” said Sharks coach John Plumtree on Tuesday.
The loss of Hargreaves is a blow to the Sharks as he was the main jumper in a lineout formation that did not function well against the Stormers and which the Sharks are looking to improve upon in Saturday’s must-win game against the Lions at Mr Price Kings Park.
“The loss of Alistair is an opportunity for Steven Sykes to step up to the plate as a lineout man. He has been part of our system for a long time and he worked with guys like Albert van den Berg so this is his chance to use his experience and take charge,” said Plumtree.
“Ross Skeate will come back into the squad, but I don’t want to put too much responsibility on him to sort out our lineout problems as he has been out for a while. He will join the 22, and fortunately Gerhard Mostert is there to offer a big target to aim at in the lineouts.”
Plumtree said that after analysing the video of the game, the Sharks had decided that the main problem with the lineout against the Stormers was poor option taking.
“There were some poor options from us at the lineout and there were also some really poor executions. We need a lineout that can win ball, so it is a concern and something we are working on this week. We have just got to execute properly. There are a number of things that go into a lineout - there is the lift, the jump, the throw, and all of those things need to be in sync.”
Hargreaves is the only player from the side that lost 16-6 to the Stormers that is ruled out of Saturday's game. Plumtree said that while flanker Jean Deysel is fit to play again, he wants him to ease himself back into rugby through the Vodacom Cup team at this stage.
"Jean has been out of rugby for 11 months and given his knee problems and the wrist injury he had before that I think it is necessary for him to come back at Vodacom Cup level as an intermediary step before he gets thrown into Super Rugby again. He is happy with that," said Plumtree.