Currie Cup

Anthony defends Sharks kicking

2014-08-27 05:00
Paul Anthony (Gallo Images)

Durban - Assistant coach Paul Anthony has defended the way the Sharks have continued to play the same kicking game they used during Super Rugby in the Currie Cup, insisting they are trying to change.

The defending champions are unbeaten so far and sit second on the log after three games, although have yet to show the attacking intent that had been promised by the Kings Park outfit in recent weeks.

"As we've discussed this week, we've got a different philosophy to the approach from Super Rugby, and hopefully that will not disappear, because there is place to kick, but there's also a time to kick and a time to move it," Anthony said on Tuesday.

"I felt there were times (this season) where we could really launch an attack and then we just kicked it out of the hands aimlessly.

"That has put us under pressure. There has been too much uncertainty at times and we need to protect the ball a lot more when we can."

Anthony revealed the Durban side, who beat Free State Cheetahs 19-16 over the past weekend to maintain their 100 percent record, were trying to move away from the more predictable game they played in Super Rugby.

"What we're trying to do is to play a more expansive game," he said. "We have to get away from the fact that we can't just carry it straight and directly.

"I know it did come to the fore this weekend, but I think that's simply because we are trying something new."

The former junior Blue Bulls coach said that part of the problem why their new game-plan was not being executed was because of over exuberance.

"The guys are really eager, you'll see a lot of forced offloads and things like that. We've just go to settle them down because they want to play, but they're rushing it.

"I think it's a lack of experience in a sense, a new sort of outlook to the way we coached and played in Super Rugby, which is great to have because they're fantastic to work with.

"I think if we can just temper that, calm everyone down, just a few percent, maybe take it back a few knots, I think they can play some outstanding rugby because we got some real pace in the backs.

The Sharks, who face the Pumas at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit this weekend, will be without veteran lock Marco Wentzel, but young lock JC Astle is fit again and expected to replace him.

Centre S'bura Sithole is also expected to be fit after picking up a knock against the Cheetahs.

Read more on:    sharks  |  currie cup  |  paul anthony  |  durban  |  rugby

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