2015 Nedbank Golf Challenge

30 of the world's best golfers will descend on the Gary Player Golf Course for this year's Nedbank Golf Challenge!


    Sharks ‘lack imagination’

    2014-07-21 18:11

    Rob Houwing, Sport24 chief writer

    Cape Town – A shortage of subtlety could cost the Sharks in their Super Rugby semi-final against the Crusaders in Christchurch on Saturday, says pundit and former All Blacks scrumhalf Justin Marshall.

    Effectively firing the first salvo in the pre-match “verbals”, Marshall, who spent nine years on the books of the seven-time champion ‘Saders, has accused the visitors of lacking imagination.

    Writing in his column for the New Zealand Herald (www.nzherald.co.nz) on Monday, the now television commentator said the Highlanders had been “the better team over the 80 minutes” in their finals series first round 31-27 loss to the Sharks at Kings Park on Saturday.

    “All the points the Sharks scored, apart from their try through (replacement) wing Tonderai Chavhanga, originated from their set piece. Will that be enough to beat the Crusaders? I’m not sure it will be.

    “I fear for the Sharks’ hopes in Christchurch. They look like a team with a game plan (of) smashing people up front, but little else.

    “They outmuscled the Crusaders in their round-robin match (the Sharks won 30-25 in Christchurch on May 17 – Sport24) and you would think that will be their approach again.”

    Marshall did laud the visitors’ defensive effort in that upset: “It was memorable that night, when they won despite playing with 13 men for a large part of it; it was outstanding.

    “But they lack imagination; they resort to big runners going straight at you – there’s no subtlety.

    “The Sharks were full of pure brutal physicality (against the Highlanders) and I don’t know if that will be enough against what is virtually an All Black forward pack.

    “The Crusaders didn’t ask enough questions last time (the semi-finalists met); they were lured into a game they didn’t want to play and they paid for it ... they won’t be out for ‘revenge’; it’s more about righting the wrongs.”

    Perhaps Marshall’s words will be viewed as a cheeky bait to get the Sharks to adjust their methods and be more expansive in Christchurch, but considering their major scrum and lineout supremacy over the Highlanders, Jake White is considered in South Africa highly unlikely to fiddle with his treasured “knockout rugby” brew on Saturday.

    In ordinary season, where the Crusaders finished second overall, one point ahead of the Sharks, they registered 41 tries and conceded 36, whereas the Sharks notched 29 but leaked only 22.

    So “Crusaders attack v Sharks defence” seems a reasonably likely theme this weekend ...

    *Follow our chief writer on Twitter: @RobHouwing

    Read News24’s Comments Policy

    24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

    Comment on this story
    Comments have been closed for this article.
    Live Video Streaming
    • Blitz
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
    • SS1
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
    • SS2
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
    • SS3
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
    Video Highlights
    Sport Talk


    26 February 2016
    • Blues v Highlanders, Eden Park 08:35
    • Brumbies v Hurricanes, GIO Stadium 10:40
    • Cheetahs v Argentina Super Rugby, Free State Stadium 19:00
    27 February 2016
    • TBC v Lions, Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium 06:15
    • Crusaders v Chiefs, AMI Stadium 08:35
    • Waratahs v Reds, Allianz Stadium 10:40
    • Force v Rebels, nib Stadium 12:50
    • Kings v Sharks, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium 15:00
    • Stormers v Bulls, Cape Town 17:05
    04 March 2016
    • Crusaders v Blues, AMI Stadium 08:35
    • Brumbies v Waratahs, GIO Stadium 10:40


    04 July 2015
    27 June 2015
    20 June 2015
    13 June 2015
    12 June 2015
    06 June 2015
    05 June 2015
    30 May 2015
    29 May 2015
    23 May 2015
    22 May 2015
    16 May 2015
    15 May 2015
    09 May 2015
    08 May 2015
    02 May 2015
    01 May 2015
    26 April 2015
    25 April 2015
    24 April 2015
    18 April 2015
    17 April 2015
    11 April 2015
    10 April 2015
    04 April 2015
    03 April 2015
    28 March 2015
    27 March 2015
    22 March 2015
    21 March 2015
    20 March 2015
    14 March 2015
    13 March 2015
    07 March 2015
    06 March 2015
    28 February 2015
    27 February 2015
    21 February 2015
    20 February 2015
    15 February 2015
    14 February 2015
    13 February 2015


    Rank Team P W Pts


    “Craig Joubert deserves plaudits for making a gutsy call against the home side in the Super Rugby semis, writes Herman Mostert.”

    Opinion Poll

    Super Rugby is a thing of the past. Next up: The Rugby Championship. Who will emerge victorious this season?

    Monday Quiz Madness!

    There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.