Cape Town - A brilliant individual try from wing JP Pietersen has enabled the Sharks to claim a come-from-behind 26-21 win over the Waratahs at Kings Park in Durban.
The Waratahs were in control of proceedings, leading 21-13 midway through the second half, when their fullback Kurtley Beale stepped brilliantly to break the Sharks line. However, he threw a wild pass which landed in Pietersen's hands, and he sprinted almost 60 metres to score in the corner.
Suddenly, the Sharks seemed to have a new lease of life, looking energised as their forwards slowly started to dominate their Australian opponents.
The brilliant Pietersen, was duly awarded with the man-of-the match award.
The Sharks led 13-11 at halftime.
Earlier, in the first half, Sharks flyhalf Patrick Lambie scored a brilliant try similar to the one he scored in last year's Currie Cup final against Western Province.
Lambie converted both tries, and also kicked four penalties in a personal tally of 21 points.
Wing Lachie Turner and flyhalf Daniel Halangahu scored for the Waratahs, while Beale kicked three penalties and a conversion.
This win ensures the Sharks will stay in second position in the South African conference, seven points ahead of the third placed Bulls, who play the Cheetahs at Loftus Versfeld later on Saturday. It also lifted the Durbanites into fifth position on the overall combined Super Rugby log.
The Waratahs are now sixth on the overall log, still second in the Australian conference, eight points behind the high-flying Reds, who host the Crusaders in a blockbuster clash on Sunday.
And, with a clash against the resurging Bulls at Loftus Versfeld looming next week, it will take a monumental effort from the Australians to now reach the play-offs.Teams:
Sharks: 15. Louis Ludik, 14. JP Pietersen, 13. Stefan Terblanche, 12. Meyer Bosman, 11. Lwazi Mvovo, 10. Patrick Lambie, 9. Conrad Hoffmann, 8. Keegan Daniel, 7. Jean Deysel, 6. Jacques Botes, 5. Alistair Hargreaves, 4. Steven Sykes, 3. Eugene van Staden, 2. Bismarck du Plessis, 1. John Smit (captain)
Substitutes: 16. Tendai Mtawarira, 17. Wiehahn Herbst, 18. Gerhard Mostert, 19. Willem Alberts, 20. Charl McLeod, 21. Jacques-Louis Potgieter, 22. Riaan Swanepoel
15 Kurtley Beale, 14 Lachie Turner, 13 Ryan Cross, 12 Tom Carter, 11 Sosene Anesi, 10 Daniel Halangahu, 9 Luke Burgess, 8 Ben Mowen, 7 Chris Alcock, 6 Dave Dennis, 5 Sitaleki Timani, 4 Dean Mumm (captain), 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 1 Benn Robinson
Substitutes: 16 John Ulugia, 17 Al Baxter, 18 Pat O'Connor, 19 Hugh Perrett, 20 Brendan McKibbin, 21 Ben Batger, 22 Atieli Pakalani