Cape Town - The Sharks have a spring in their step this Currie Cup, and it has a lot to do with the emergence of Curwin Bosch and Innocent Radebe.
Bosch (19) has slotted into fullback with Radebe (21) pulling the strings at flyhalf, and the pair has been a breath of fresh air to a side that battled their way to a Super Rugby quarter-final in 2016.
While they were solid defensively in that tournament, the Sharks were often one-dimensional on attack.
That, it seems, has changed in the Currie Cup.
"We had a look at what worked and what didn't work in Super Rugby. We felt we could have still used the ball a bit more. We didn't play what we saw in front of us and that was kind of the mind-shift we had to make," veteran wing Odwa Ndungane said this week.
"It's something that we've been trying to do; keep the ball in hand. I think we've started off quite nicely with that and hopefully we can keep going."
Bosch and Radebe, Ndungane says, have been instrumental in that regard.
"They bring a lot of excitement. Curwin was at school last year and they just play what they see in front of them," Ndungane said.
"They haven't been programmed as much as other flyhalves who have been in the system for long. They play from what is inside of them so that's the kind of special players they are.
"I think we've seen that in the past games they've played. I'm really excited to see what's in store for them and I'm looking forward to seeing them growing."
Ndungane, now 35, says that he has resisted the urge to act as a mentor to the young duo.
"They are young, but I don't want to hold their hands too much," said Ndungane.
"I want to let them be themselves and express themselves. Obviously sometimes when you see things getting out of hand then you'll have to say something, but they are a special bunch of players with x-factor ... I'm just enjoying my time with them."
The Sharks have won four from five this Currie Cup season and are top of the log. That position will come under threat on Saturday when they host the Free State Cheetahs, who are four from four and just a single point behind the Sharks.
"It's definitely going to be massive, tough match," said Ndungane.
"They've won four out of four and they have continuity from Super Rugby, more and less the same team.
"There is a lot at stake but these are the games you want to play."
Kick-off on Saturday is at 17:00.