Currie Cup

Botes happy with Sharks blend

2014-08-19 14:02
Jacques Botes (Gallo Images)
Durban - Sharks flank Jacques Botes says the Sharks have the perfect blend of experience to do well in this year's Currie Cup.

According to the MyPlayers website, the Sharks, along with the Golden Lions and Western Province, have emerged as the only unbeaten teams in this year's Currie Cup campaign after two rounds. 

Despite the loss of several key players to Springbok duty, the defending champions have won both of their opening games against Griquas and the Pumas with a squad made up of mostly young players. Botes believes the Sharks have the elements to do well this season.

"It's definitely a young and exciting squad overall. There's some great talent in the team," Botes told MyPlayers. "We can also depend on experienced guys like Odwa Ndungane, Tonderai Chavhanga, Matt Stevens and Marco Wentzel, who all boast international experience.

"This year's Currie Cup will provide a challenging season, but if we stick to our guns, we will do well. We have a lot of pace, so we'll be looking to do well on attack."

He added that new captain Tera Mtembu has done a good job in his new role.

"Tera has made an excellent step-up this season. He took his opportunities during Super Rugby, so the call to make him captain is an exciting one. He's doing well so far, and has a few experienced players around him to help him with the leadership responsibilities."

From a coaching perspective, Botes believes that director of rugby Jake White, who still works with the team during the domestic season, has had a great influence since his arrival.

"Since the start of Super Rugby, Jake has brought a lot of attention to detail to the Sharks game plan. We have also done more when it comes to match analysis. Jake's a very astute coach," explained Botes.

"Under the mentorship of Jake and [consultant] Brendan Venter, head coach Brad Macleod-Henderson has learned a lot and is making a name for himself this year. It's an exciting season for players and coaches."

The Sharks next play the Free State Cheetahs in Durban this weekend as they look to record their third consecutive Currie Cup win.

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