Plumtree backs SA sides

2010-05-04 09:01

Stephen Nell

Cape Town – John Plumtree expects the Bulls and Stormers to contest this year’s Super 14 final.

“The question is where the final will be played. Home advantage will be massive,” the Sharks coach told Sport24.

The Sharks’ hopes of still making it to the semi-finals were killed off with their defeat to the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.

And to make matters worse there are doubts about Springbok captain John Smit’s participation after he injured his neck in Pretoria.

Smit injured his neck during a scrum engagement in the match against the Bulls. He said on Twitter that the damage is not serious and that he hopes to be able to play on Saturday.

Bismarck du Plessis is already on the injured list and that may force the Sharks to hand Craig Burden their No 2 jersey.

In another setback it has emerged that lock Johann Muller injured his arm and he will not play in the Super 14 again this year.

Meanwhile, there will be a lot at stake for the Stormers on Saturday.

While it will be a surprise if they fail to secure a semifinal, they are under pressure to ensure that it will be contested at Newlands.

On top of that they still have a chance of topping the log, which will ensure home advantage if they make the final.

As far as the Bulls are concerned, home advantage in the semi-final or final will be of less value than it was in the past as they will play these games at the Orlando Stadium due to Loftus being off limits as it is a host venue for soccer’s World Cup.

Plumtree praised the Stormers as an “excellent side”.

“Their forwards have stood up more with the young players having been together for a number of years. They are more of an all-round side. They were also ambitious with their contracting,” said Plumtree.

He was also fuming on Monday after allegedly being misquoted as criticising flyhalf Andy Goode and Sharks commercial manager Rudolf Straeuli.

“Do you really think an experienced coach like me will criticise a player at a news conference?

“I mentioned that we need to be ambitious in our recruitment and straight away the conclusion was drawn that I was criticising Rudolf and Andy.

“I never said that and totally deny it. I play a huge part in recruitment myself.

“We thought we’d have Juan Martin Hernandez and Adrian Jacobs available this year, but they were injured. At times we are the victims of circumstances.”


  • GVA - 2010-05-04 09:58

    Rudolf Straeuli should be criticised, why take a overseas Flyhalf when there is an opportunity to field and develop a home grown player. What the heck is the Sharks Accademy there for?

  • Koos van die Kaap - 2010-05-04 10:23

    As ons die Sharks onderskat, gaan ons ons gat sien. Behalwe vir heelagter Lambie wat 'n swak skakel is (hy is kak onder hoë balle), het hulle 'n goeie span propvol talent.

  • ELSA - 2010-05-04 10:50


  • sizwe - 2010-05-04 10:58

    Those of us who support the Sharks are disappointed at this season Super 14 perfromance. What has gone wrong to such a good team?

  • Bok Fan - 2010-05-04 12:13

    At the begining of this current S14 season, the Sharks were rated as one of the Favourites to win the S14 2010. Now they sit in the bottom Half of the log. The main thing wrong with the Sharks team is John Plumtree. For a supposedly professional coach with a great team to have a career stat of P22 W11 L11, is unacceptable. The Sharks have a great team and KaK coach, whereas the Lions have a Kak Team and a Great Coach. Since Plumtree took over from Dick Muir the Sharks have gone from Great to mediocore. Plumtree has taken the Sharks from a Top team to a Team of overrated under-performers!!!! Someone please send this Kiwi a one-way ticket back to NZ. He's done absolutely NOTHING for the Sharks and needs to move on!!!! And this weekend will show just how bad the Sharks have become, when they get anihilated by the Stormers!!!!!

  • Hellooooooo Elsa - 2010-05-04 12:47

    Elsa, where do the Sharks players come from???? Their academy??? No, they come from the Lions and Free State, and Jon Smit from the Pretoria. Less than 50% of the Sharks players are home grown. So really, at least comment factually. The Sharks started badly, had a few close losses which cost them, but they progressed well but left to much of a mountain to climb. Go LIONS, MAY 2011 be our year!

  • Sally - 2010-05-04 12:57

    The Lions and Cheetahs are the academy for the Sharks, thats where they get most of their players

  • Sharky Andrew - 2010-05-04 13:47

    @GVA - I reckon it was a smart move by the sharks to get a experienced flyhalf in for a while. They wanted to give Ruan a chance to get some confidence back in his game, and to settle in to the scrumhalf position again, something that would not be so easy if he had a young inexperienced flyhalf to cover for. now that he starting to get back to his best again the sharks can start thinking about bringing in a younger player like guy cronje or pat lambie to make the position their own, and Ruan pienaar can take some of the pressure off them while they do so. having said all this, I reckon Monty dumond would've done just as good a job as Andy goode did. I don't see why we bought him back from the cheetahs, if we didn't even give him a place on the bench the entire Super 14.

  • Claude - 2010-05-04 15:11

    If John Plumtree is expecting the Bulls and the Stormers to contest the Super 14 final then he is saying that the Stormers will beat the Sharks this weekend. Now that's a hell of a thing for a Coach to admit. Maybe he is just trying to lull the Stormers into a false sense of security!

  • Chris - 2010-05-04 16:52

    Agree with GVA. Butch James was shown the door three years ago. In that time, the Sharks academy has failed to produce a replacement flyhalf. Why? I also believe Monty Dumond has been given a raw deal. He's a solid player, and should be given a good run in the first team. As a Sharks supporter, I would like to see more home-grown players in the first team.

  • @Hellooooooo Elsa - 2010-05-05 00:28

    Academy players who have gone on to play for the Sharks in the last nine years: 15 Carl Bezuidenhout, Scott Spedding, Patrick Lambie, 14 JP Pietersen, Cedric Mkize, Dusty Noble, 13 Waylon Murray, Clyde Rathbone, Braden Ferreira, 12 Bradley Barritt, Riaan Swanepoel, 11 Lwazi Mvovu, Luzuko Vulindlu, Howard Noble, 10 Francois Steyn, Steve Meyer, Guy Cronje, 9 Sandile Nxumalo, Thulani Nteta, Ross Cronje, 8 Ryan Kankowski, Justin Downey, 7 Tim Dlulani, Nikolai Blignaut, Michael Rhodes, 6 Keegan Daniel, Conrad Stoltz, 5 Alistair Hargreaves, Johan Snyman, 4 Steven Sykes, Claude Dry, 3 Patric Cilliers, Pompies Wessels, Wiehan Herbst, Julian Redelinghuis, 2 Craig Burden, Jody Jenneker, Jan-Toit van Jaarsveld, JC Strauss, 1 Beast Mtawarira, Sangoni Mxoli, Melusi Mthethwa, Dale Chadwick And John Smit went straight to the Sharks after high-school. Lions are kak.Maybe if they considered developing players for themselves and the country they would win a game, but I wouldn't hold my breath.

  • @last comment - 2010-05-05 11:47 least 50% of the players listed below were placed into the academy from elsewhere 2. Take the Sharks team at any given time and more than 50% will be poached players from elsewhere. Sharks are a great team, they just have ill informed egotistical non factual supporters.

  • THE VOICE - 2010-05-05 14:22

    Credit to "PLUM" for an accurate final prediction! Yet it simply needs to be said ... THE SHARKS ARE SERIAL UBER UNDER ACHIEVERS IN SUPER RUGBY!! It is time that the spotlight be shifted to their senior rugby players ... guys like SMIT, PIENAAR, MULLER, JANNIE DU PLESSIS, PIETERSEN, TERBLANCHE, BOTES et al. If these guys are as good as what is said about them ... WHY DO THEY NOT DELIVER THE GOODS ... year after year after year ... why did the SHARKS lost - almost casually - their first couple of home games. Indeed ... what on earth is STRAULI "staaldraad" doing there? No sir ... in all honesty ... it is time for the SHARK powers that are ... to ask serious and urgent questions and for their supporters to - once and for all - put away their sentiments ... and also start to ask serious questions to the said and other players. Rather face the realities now and come up with solutions (how bitter painful it might be) than ending up like the LIONS - when it is almost impossible to do "damage control" any more!

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