Cape Town - Sharks captain Marco Wentzel and Director of Rugby Gary Gold have apologised to fans after they failed to reach the Currie Cup semi-finals.
After playing to a 34-34 draw to the Free State Cheetahs in Bloemfontein at the weekend, the Durbanites finished fifth on the overall Currie Cup log to miss out on a playoffs spot.
The Sharks appeared to have the game in the bag, leading 34-20 with four minutes remaining, but two late converted tries gave Free State a draw - and a place in the semi-finals at the expense of the Sharks.
Gold and Wentzel apologised to fans afterwards.
Gold was quoted as saying on the Sharks’ official Facebook page: "Going into the 2015 season we were optimistic about our chances, however our performances were well below par and our results were just not good enough.
“I am passionate about the Sharks brand, the rich history associated with the brand, but most importantly I am passionate about this group of players who I have immense belief in.
“It hurts us that we have disappointed you, we will leave no stone unturned in our preparation to come back fighting in 2016."
Wentzel added: “It has been disappointing 2015 season. We are sorry we have let our loyal fans down.
“Our supporters are the heartbeat of our team and we play for you. Sometimes our performances don’t always go according to plan or reflect the pride we have in wearing the black and white jersey.
“2016 is a new year and we are determined to work extremely hard to make you proud once again.”