Plumtree lauds 'brave' effort

2011-06-19 14:12

Pretoria - Sharks coach John Plumtree summed-up his team's 26-23 victory over the Bulls on Saturday as a courageous team effort against one of the best sides in the competition.

The Sharks now have the daunting task of facing seven time Super Rugby champions the Crusaders in Nelson next week where they will again be underdogs away from home.

"It needed a special performance against a great side, especially at home in front of their crowd it was very brave - the boys were very courageous and we showed for 80 minutes that we can work as a group and that was the most pleasing thing," said Plumtree.

The men from Durban stood their ground as far as the physical exchanges were concerned while at the same time making sure that they deny Bulls skipper Victor Matfield the chance to dictate matters at the lineouts.

Plumtree said that particular set-piece (lineout) is the "heart" and "soul" of Bulls rugby and was happy that his men stuck to the set plan.

"To win up here we needed to complete that plan and it wasn't perfect at times, but you could see what we wanted to do and not giving the Bulls a lot of lineouts was important so we had to kick and then defend," he said.

"There is not one way to beat them, but however we decided to beat them we had to make sure that we were committed.

The decision to start French International Frederick Michalak ahead of regular flyhalf Patrick Lambie also paid off on the night.

"Fred (Michalak) showed his experience out there tonight and that was vital at a big stage like this," said Plumtree.

"A guy like Pat Lambie is going to learn a lot from Fred. His drop-goal was important and so was the way he controlled the game."

Beating a world class side like the Bulls in their backyard should also give the Sharks renewed confidence in their abilities following a few below par performances in recent matches.

"It (winning at Loftus) will give us a little bit of confidence.

"When we go to Nelson and face the Crusaders we are going to need that belief.

"We have won here before but talk is cheap, you've got to back it up.

"Against a great side like the Bulls, a full stadium, you've got to perform and everyone needs to front up and I think that was the big thing for me tonight."

Apart from the rewards the Sharks reaped by awarding Michalak the flyhalf berth, Plumtree would not single out any other players.

"I was really happy afterwards because I couldn't single anyone out," he said.

"Everyone had to dig deep and the Bulls had a lot to play for tonight." The Sharks coach also paid tribute to the Bulls stalwarts that made their final bow in Pretoria.

"Those guys have been great servants for the Bulls over the years and I'm sure they would have been pretty fired up before the game so to counter that is easy to talk about, but to do it is something different," said Plumtree.

Part of the team's success had to do with their decision to train at the Royal Bafokeng Sports Complex outside Phokeng near Rustenburg.

"I don't think there was a lot of people believing that we can beat the Bulls and you need to get away from that and get tight and that's what we did," Plumtree said.

"It worked nicely, but I'm only saying that because we won," he quipped.

The Sharks will be leaving for New Zealand on Tuesday night before arriving on Wednesday evening (local time).

Plumtree said that they will first regroup in Durban to asses the bruises his men picked up in their brutal battle against the Bulls.


  • whitemamba - 2011-06-19 14:38

    Well done Sharkies, now an even bigger effort needed against ' Saders

      Joe Soap - 2011-06-19 15:39

      Pay back time for Twickers....

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-19 17:23

      Sure as hell not going to get any easier, however we played the bulls on fire, just worried about injuries, that was a physical battle

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-19 17:29

      Jut looking back on previous posts on other thread by Sharks fans, saying plumtree has lost his mind, get rid of him, bla bla bla ... so disgraceful some of our fans, now where they, rating their words or pretending they never said that...

      Mike@CapeT - 2011-06-19 17:41

      @Guru....I agree with you about Plumtree but also, some of your supporters had a lot to say about Michalek. He sure proved them wrong - he had a great game!

      Renny - 2011-06-19 17:47

      Yes well done to the sharks, but I think the bulls would have stood a better chance of beating the Crusaders than the sharks, but that's just me.

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-19 18:07

      Erm, well lets put it this way, we beat the bulls at home, we got 4 tries against the saders full strength team with our second rate flyhalf, who isn't even on the bench now, where the bulls got 0.. no I'm pretty sure we have a good chance, as much as it may be difficult for you believe that...

      Russell - 2011-06-19 20:46

      Renny you sound like a bitter bul dude!!!!

      GregandShaz - 2011-06-19 22:25

      agree with Guru and Mike where are all the dooms johan du toit....who,s the retard now??? Well done Sharks a great game and true guts

      Preshan - 2011-06-20 06:58

      @renny the last time Bulls Played Saders, they socred 0 points.

      Rob van den Heuvel - 2011-06-20 08:57

      @Preshan - amaizing how quickly they forget! Not only did the Bulls only manage to score zero points on that day but their form is questionable. As for the Sharks, they could quite easily have come away with a win at Twickers and their form is on the up! I'd rather be sending the Sharks any day. Bulls dont travel well while Sharks do...

      Schweet - 2011-06-20 13:09

      Crusaders are going to take sharks to cleaners with alteast 18 point margin. Sharks backline to old for Crusaders and if Sonny Bill is fit margin will be over 25 points. Go Crusaders - you deserve to be there on merit your opponents who apparently can't win a game on there own as seen in the last to games against the Bulls but more so against the Lions!

  • natalie.wilke1 - 2011-06-19 15:02

    Wonderful effort from the Sharks, who at last seemed like the team that we know and love! What a nailbiter to the end.....

  • bob.vanwyk1 - 2011-06-19 15:09

    The yanks have proven that even teams in in the US who fly west to east stand a good chance of losing because of jet lag so beware sharks get plenty of sleep. I forget the percentages but they were very high.

  • springbokke - 2011-06-19 15:26

    As an avid Bull supporter . Mr plumtree I thank you for the very kind are a true gentleman.......May your team go to greater things in the compotition......Bulle.

      Joe Soap - 2011-06-19 15:41

      @sprinbokke - nice sentiment dude, well done to you and your team for putting on a great match. This site could use a few more like you.

      Collitjies - 2011-06-19 16:40

      Persons like yourself make a real difference, as a Sharks supporter hearing your words makes me and the multitude feel even greater at their achievement. Thank you.

  • Raymond - 2011-06-19 15:40

    I was amazed at how well the Sharks played compared to previous performances this season. I don't know whether a trip to Nelson, New Zealand would encourage me to play like a "tiger" for one game at the far end of the world but it is all about pride, belief & determination and the will to win. The Sharks were monumental, keep up the good work.

  • Ace Ventura - 2011-06-19 15:51

    I still think it was the bee's fault.

      Ace Ventura - 2011-06-19 16:29

      Vrek jou etter. Eenigeen wat my ken weet ek sal nooit so n dom comment maak nie.

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-19 17:08

      Lol :) that was still so bizarre!!! Well at least I can say I watched all of the bulls games bar this last one at loftus... I enjoy the vibe at the stadium, and its always good rugby to watch.. its actually quite a sad end to an amazing ara... Just shows us all time doesn't wait for anyone.. its going to be some years before the bulls will have names like that to talk about again.. then again bason, hougaard, are all lining up, morne will be around for awhile, so I guess there already is new prodigy in the making...

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-19 17:11

      Gooooo Sharks!!! Spoke to one of my friends ex sharks player, he says the difference between watching it and playing againdt the bulls is a whole different cup of tea, he says the nerves in the change rooms, the tackles where you struggle to breath, lambie got one of those, lol.. just nice to remind ourselves how our teams put their bodies on the line for us fans ;)

      Joe Soap - 2011-06-19 17:57

      @Lloyd - sorry about the result, how you guys taking it? After all the trash talk before the game you'd swear the Bulls were going up against the blind school. You underestimate your opponent again?

      Ace Ventura - 2011-06-19 18:08

      @Effel. And anyone who knows me will know that I never use the word 'etter'. Ons weet almal wie jy is.

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-19 18:10

      Joe we all do that, well some of us ;) its fun to mess about, but as long as you can humble yourself in defeat, read my comments on bulls thread when we lost last time...

      WPBEFONK - 2011-06-19 18:20

      Ai ACE aanvaar die reality, julle het VERLOOR en KLAAR.....

      Ace Ventura - 2011-06-19 18:47

      BALSAK, het ek op enige plek sover gestry daarmee?

      WPBEFONK - 2011-06-19 19:58

      Nee ACE(LLOYD), maar jy se dan dit is die bye?

      Ace Ventura - 2011-06-19 21:05

      Dis n grappie gewees jou stupid morg.

      Marcell - 2011-06-20 03:37

      Wie die laaste lag, lag gewoonlik die lekkerste. Al probleem met die papsakbrigade, jy weet nie of hul lag of huil nie!

  • Rygar - 2011-06-19 17:44

    GO STORMERS !!!!!!! sharks not good enough to go all the way, wont get past the Crusaders I bet anyone who dare !!

      Joe Soap - 2011-06-19 18:05

      What odds you offering?

      Frik - 2011-06-19 18:05

      Stoffers het net 1 game oor...Go SAders!!!!

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-19 18:12

      Dude go troll your stormers thread.. no need for that, the way we played this weekend we could beat any team with that team work and intensity .. now run along and go bad mouth someone else, sheesh, honestly ..

      SAFFA-CAT - 2011-06-19 19:46

      @Rygar - take your right arm, swing it round a few times, then give yourself an uppercut to the jaw. Take 2 Synap Fortes, then come back and read what you have written. Dankie. PS: I am a Stormer fan, who is ECSTATIC about the Sharks win.....(you sound like a Bulls fan, NOT a coastal team (Stormer) fan mate)

  • topamax - 2011-06-19 18:04

    End of an era for the Bulls, beginning of another for them. Anyway 'nuf about them, they will be back next year. Well done to the Guppies and Plumtree. They finally played the best combo for #10 and #15. Guppies also won the battle of Loftus amongst the forwards. I think it is also time John Smit rather moves into management, before he stuffs up our WC campaign. Anyway, should be interesting how far SA teams can go this year. Home ground does play an advantage (Crusaders are travelling around due to the quake, but they will always get support, even at Newlands). Good luck to Sharks and Stormers from here.

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-19 18:14

      Tx bro.. at least we have the trinations and wc for us to see your bois for the last time...

      Dowwe Duane - 2011-06-20 06:56

      good luck to the saders! hope they nail the arrogant scum from CT

  • CPII - 2011-06-19 18:17

    Will support S&S...but sheez, beat the Cruzzies in NZ and I will believe in you...period!

  • WPBEFONK - 2011-06-19 18:19

    Go Sharks Go!!!!! We are behind you, the STORMERS FANS WILL support you....

      Logoll - 2011-06-19 19:12

      I agree this weekend I am again supporting the Sharks. But help me out here, they say the Reds will face the lowest qualifier so does that mean if they win the Sharks will play the Reds ?? If that is the case it could still mean an all SA final at Newlands :)

      Ace Ventura - 2011-06-19 19:12

      Go Crusaders Go!!!!! We are behind you, the BULLS FANS WILL support you....

      CPII - 2011-06-19 19:31

      Ace....get lost please. This is the RSA supporters' website fool!

      Frik - 2011-06-19 19:38

      S A D E R S ! ! !

      Ace Ventura - 2011-06-19 19:44

      CPII, I am a RSA supporters, just not a Sharks or Stormers supporter.

      Marcell - 2011-06-20 03:40

      Hallo Lloyd. Eish, ons span was maar knakerig. Maar nou ja, in die gees van nasiebou is dit ons voorreg om iemand anders ook 'n kans te gee alhoewel ons weet dat die vermoens nie regtig daar is nie. Crusaders by 11.

      Joe Soap - 2011-06-20 05:54

      @Marcell - oh, how so arrogant. Find me one member amongst the squad of 22 who lost in order to give another team a chance, you wont! It's just you lame bulls supporters who find solace in giving other teams a chance, best you can do it face reality that you lost and get behind the remaining SA teams. The teams who deserve to be in the play offs, they earned it!

      richard.vonschumann - 2011-06-20 09:03

      It is really sad to hear South Africans supporting NZ teams. No man guys! Go Sharks and Stormers!!!! Bring the Super rugby trophy back to SA. It has to be mentioned, the Bulls vs Sharks game was a cracker. I recon there are some sore players from those teams. It doesn't get more physical than that. Only thing that was not good about that game were the mistakes from the referees!

  • Babba x - 2011-06-19 19:29

    Is this going to be moderated too, news24?

  • SAFFA-CAT - 2011-06-19 19:41

    @Guru - Once again CONGRATS!!!!! I hope we have now seen the END of Dave the Bul? That would give me just as much joy as the Sharks and Stormers wins did.

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-20 07:23

      Na the messages he sent me on BBM, lol, what a tool, typical saw looser, no ways his 'Bulls' team can lose unless they where cheated... He lives on another planet..

  • Papbal - 2011-06-20 00:27

    Aan al die Blou Bul ondersteuners!!! Julle speel rugby met jul mond en op die veld nie. Die Sharks het julle `n behoorlike les laat opsê. As snor julle manne gaan kies vir die wêreld beker is ek bevrees dus presies dieselfde wat met julle gaan gebeur. Viva SADERS!!!!

      Marcell - 2011-06-20 03:41

      Jy het 'n gepaste naam.

      Joe Soap - 2011-06-20 05:55

      Exactly what happened in last years 3N, very sad!

      Marx - 2011-06-20 07:11

      Papbal, ons speel ongelukkig nie, ons ondersteun ons span, laat les opsê?, watse game het jy jou verbeel kyk jy. Die Shêks het basies met daai dropgoal gewen !!

  • Greenpoizn - 2011-06-20 04:26

    As a supporter of one of the best contact sports in the world i believe some of you guys remarks rather childish Ace your name suits you the best comedian here ( i am a bulls supporter and wont support another team well my friend why are you still commenting on this page your team lost and not because of the Ref they were out played and out gunned by the sharks this time round, Was one of the better games this year well done to both teams for putting on a great show

  • frans.visserdsb - 2011-06-20 05:27

    I am a Stormers fan, so i watched the game as a neutral. it was a great game and a fantastic ad for SA rugby. The Bulls were good, the Sharks were better. The Sharks are probably the best travelling side in SA, with clever management skills. I hope they beat the Saders, this weekend, and believe they are peaking a the right time to do it. I will be wearing Black this weekend...

      Dowwe Duane - 2011-06-20 05:58

      @frans.visser Ek lag myself in 'n metabolies asidose in elke keer as ek jou posts lees. Kyk jy's nou nie 'n brein chirurg nie, en dan daai fototjie. Nou nie exactly Brad Pitt nie

      Joe Soap - 2011-06-20 05:59

      SA rugby is strong! Let's just hope we dont have too many players from one union in the Bok squad like we did last year. The Blue Bulls brand of rugby we played in last year's 3N cost us dearly. Nice to have supporters from other unions behind the SA teams. Thanks.

      frans.visserdsb - 2011-06-20 07:23

      @Duane. Ek is jammer - is my foto die topic of conversation? Het ek ooit voorgegee ek is Brad Pitt? Ek het n comment gelewer oor die rugby, het nie jou span afgekraak nie. Ek het in fact gese dat hulle goed gespeel het. En metaboliese asidose is n goeie beskrywing vir jou toestand, aangesien dit n oormatige suur afskeiding in jou liggaam is wat nie deur die niere uitgeskei kan word nie.. maw suurgat...

      frans.visserdsb - 2011-06-20 07:24

      @ Duane - en ja, ek is nie n brein sjirurg nie. Ek is n Ingenieur.

  • Dowwe Duane - 2011-06-20 05:55

    He should laud Jonathan Kaplan for handing them the game on a tray

      Philip - 2011-06-20 07:46

      And you probably spent half the night thinking about that comment.... The ref (one Kaplan) was ludicrous throughout the game. His calls were totally unfair, and I wouldnt even score him 5/10 on overall performance. But like a typical platkop blue bull, you can only see blue. I wonder what would have happened if THAT high tackle got the yellow it deserved. Or if Bakkies got the yellow he deserved (three times his prayers were answered on Saturday). Or if Kaplan took a scrumming lesson and actually blew properly in the front row, there where Bizzie and co smoked your bulls. Just face it Duane, the better team won. In 2007 the ref handed the game to you on a tray. Remember that day? I was at Kings Park that day, and felt pretty screwed over, by Vodacom buying half the tickets for the Bulls at my home ground because of some stupid sponsor agreement, all the way through to Habana scoring from that knock on. Now THAT would be handing the game, wouldnt you agree?

  • Willem Swanepoel - 2011-06-20 06:44

    As a Bulls supporter, I have to say that I would rather see my team lose against the Sharks than any other team. What a great game, it really felt like a Super Rugby Final. Now I have to take of my Bulls jersey and put on the Sharks one, no pressure Sharks ;-) You guys better make sure that the Super 15 Trophy STAYS IN SA!!

      Philip - 2011-06-20 07:42

      Spoken like a true supporter... I remember donning on some horns and blue for the final against the Chiefs and hating every moment of loving watching the Bulls win. Good luck to your team in the Currie Cup....

  • Gandolf - 2011-06-20 07:17

    The sharks do't have what it takes to take it all the way. "Well" done on beating the Bulls but that is all you will have to take home champs. You DON"T have what it takes and history has proven this on manyoccassions. Enjoy the momentary bliss for it will only last a moment. You will all be wondering what happened and scratch your heads to try to figure out how to break this inability to do what is required to actually make it through to the real rewards. Have a great week sharkies.

      Philip - 2011-06-20 07:23

      Like the Sharks didnt have what it takes to beat the Bulls at Moftus? Oh Gandolf, build a bridge and be South African for a change. Week in and week out we hear how we supposed to shout for the Bulls against overseas teams because its the South African thing to do. The Sharks to travel to New Zealand and score more points against the Saders than the Bulls did. Thats the easy part. The Sharks to beat the Saders in a semi in New Zealand. Thats the immortal part... And yes, the Bulls have 3 trophies. Foei tog. Lets not forget that at least 1 of those 3 actually belong to the Sharks. The other one we were beaten by the eventual champs. Was a bitter pill to swallow. But we did that. Now run along to the Curry Cup and wait for us there...

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-20 07:28

      You right, like the knock on and forward pass that let the Bulls beat us in 2007... You right, history can be unwritten or even if you don't call it forward the knock on was as real as it gets... As usual the Bulls have 16 men and if that wasn't the case, the record would show first SA team to win the Super 14 would be the Sharks, and then what would history say? Ja I thought so...

      Philip - 2011-06-20 07:37

      Guru, there is no way history will ever be unwritten. I just take offense to how many times a Bull can throw 3 trophies around when they lose an argument. Fact is they have won 3. Congrats. Stuff of legends. Team filled with legends. Why cant they simply be gracious in defeat, say the better team won (we won, fair and square, and dont get me started on the ref who seems to think the Sharks all Springbok front row who owned the Bulls front row cannot scrum - Chilliboy aint gonna get outta that icebath until the finals). And why for peetsakes not hope that our incumbent Springboks get as much game time as possible. That would mean BEATING the Crusaders, not just competing. Oh well, I suppose thats why Loftus is called "Lente Hardeware Orkes" (15 tappits op 'n blom wat liefling kan sing)

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-20 08:20

      Philip 100% I didn't mean can be I mean can't be.. But the fact of the matter no way knows who will win this compo, but to make a bold statement that the Bulls are the only team with a chance against the Crusaders is honestly the biggest load of toot I have ever heard, when last has the Bulls beaten the Saders at Christ Church? Well lets think about that? But the Stormers have beaten the Saders overseas, so why would the Bulls be the one to start a chance? The only SA team to be able too? Yet we scored 4 tries against their full strength team, and a second away from scoring the 5th and with Lambie that could have even been more on our side and less on theirs.. We have a strong hope, we played a full strength Bulls team, and we played 80 minutes rugby, we made so few handling errors, we played like the team in the Currie Cup, and if we can do this again this coming weekend it will be a good game.. And hopefully we will get our revenge on the Saders as we did against the Bulls at Loftus... GOOOOO SHARKS!!!! If anyone is willing to sponsor me a ticket to watch the match, i'll be for ever in debt to you :D

      Philip - 2011-06-20 08:41

      Well stated guru. Would be nice if there was some kind of rule which would reverse decisions and reverse where trophies are held. Imagine how empty that trophy cabinet in Pretoria would be then... I think if you asked each and every south african team who screwed them over most in tight ref decisions, the vote would be decidedly blue. I knew at the end of the first half already that the fellahs from North of the Jukskei would blame it on Kaplan. Not on ALMOST achieving the impossible and winning so many games in a row and therefore not being able to pick themselves up once again. Not on having too many chiefs and no indians, nor on the image consultant required to manage so many egos and so many people who think they are greater than rugby. Not on being outplayed in every facet of the game. But simply on the ref. Now if you manage to get a ticket, I would quite happily fit in your suitcase and would be even more quiet that Loftus after losing...

      Rob van den Heuvel - 2011-06-20 09:03

      I remember reading on this very blog that the Sharks would not be able to beat the Bulls, last laugh n all. Let's get behind the SA teams. Sharks are on the up, have good player mgmt, travel well and have new found belief in themselves. Will it be a mountain to clime? Sure, but I'd rather have the Sharks representing the SA effort in Nelson than the Bulls....

  • Philip - 2011-06-20 07:19

    To all the Blue Bulls (including the ones who wrote us off and believed they just had to pitch to win the game), I would just like to extend my sympathies on the death of an era. Surely you will miss your legends. Lets hope that you have enough depth not to go another 10 years without silverware. To all the Black and White supporters I have one thing and only one thing to say: YOU FAAAAARQIN BEAUTIES :):):):)

      rugby_guru - 2011-06-20 08:37


      Rob van den Heuvel - 2011-06-20 09:04

      Always nice to beat the Bulls in Pretoria.

      Gandolf - 2011-06-27 09:00

      Whoe are the beauties now champ? Bunch of Mullets that cannot perform when it is actually required of them to perform. I said it above and have been vindicated in full and I quote myself: "The sharks don't have what it takes to take it all the way. "Well" done on beating the Bulls but that is all you will have to take home champs. You DON"T have what it takes and history has proven this on manyoccassions. Enjoy the momentary bliss for it will only last a moment. You will all be wondering what happened and scratch your heads to try to figure out how to break this inability to do what is required to actually make it through to the real rewards. Have a great week sharkies."

  • Gandolf - 2011-06-20 07:22

    @ Russell, rugby_guru? and Preshan ....... Renny is 1000% correct. The sharks (mullets) have not got what it takes to actually perform. I'm with you Renny. There will be lots of silence as there unfortunately is for us Bulls supporters from the mullets next week when they geta hiding of note. Hahahahahahahaaaa!! Bulls know what to do and how tohandle the big stage. Go Stormers. Bring it home for SA.

      Philip - 2011-06-20 08:20

      With that kind of Bulls mentality (already beaten at Moftus before you run onto the park), the "mullets" wont win. With the kind of mentality you will see, its gonna be great to get more points on the scoreboard than the Bulls could manage. Not once. But TWICE....

      Rob van den Heuvel - 2011-06-20 09:06

      As under dogs Sharks pulled one over the Bulls. I think the Sharks will go into the game in Nelson as under dogs again which seems to suit them fine! Lets all get behind the SA teams still flying the flag.

      Gandolf - 2011-06-27 09:03

      @ Philip: So................................... More Points where?????? and TWICE??????? Those mullets ended up on a hiding to nothing. And they got one handed to them as well.

  • MB1810 - 2011-06-20 08:33

    The big test still lies ahead. They had a great game against the Bulls, but they need to back it up with a great performance against the Crusaders. If they play well and lose, I can probably live with it, but there is nothing worse than expecting a similar performance to the previous week and then losing spectacularly without much of a fight. Good luck to the Sharks, lets hope they are fired up and ready to go!

  • Sharky6606 - 2011-06-20 09:12

    Well done Sharks. Great result. I just hope that Smit stays off the field. He is sadly not in that league anymore. If he starts, he will cost the Sharks

  • JustinD - 2011-06-20 09:12

    Bulls are kak

  • Omungwalume - 2011-06-20 09:28

    I think we have to acknowledge that the Sharks has got a brilliant coach, someone who had a Plan A & B and could "read" the game. We don't seem to have much of that kind of expertise in this country.Most of the times we lack the vision and play one dimensional rugby without the ability to "read" the game at half time and come back with Plan B. The Sharks deserved to win. Viva the Sharks!

  • GT - 2011-06-20 09:47

    Go Sharks if you could do it last week you can do it again this week

  • StBad - 2011-06-20 11:15

    I hope this wasn't our final... good luck boys!

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