Runners-up tag annoys Sharks

2013-01-29 22:32

Cape Town - The Sharks are eager to go one step further and finally shed their "chokers' tag by going all the way in this year's Super Rugby competition.

The Durbanites have contested the final of the last three tournaments they've played in but lost them all - the 2011 and 2012 Currie Cup finals as well as last year's Super Rugby final.

“We’ve reached three finals in a row now and haven’t nailed any of them, and the guys are getting a bit annoyed about that," assistant coach Hugh Reece-Edwards told the Sharks website.

The Sharks have also been Super Rugby runners up on no less than five occasions [1994 (in the old Super 10), 1996, 2001, 2007 and 2012] - a record they are adamant to put right.

"We know what we have to do, we know where we’ve made mistakes and that’s a good thing. It’s often those little failures that direct you as to where you need to do better and we’ve identified that, the players know it. The mental preparation we need to put into this is massive," said Reece-Edwards.

The former Sharks fullback stressed what needs to be done in order to realise their dream in 2013, taking note of last year’s campaign which was built off a solid finish rather than a spectacular beginning.

“We can’t start by losing the first few games and then playing catch-up, we have to start by playing positive, winning rugby. And we have to maintain that. We have to look after the players, we have to manage each player. We’re in a situation this year where we have a certain amount of depth and we can do that. The ball is in our court at the moment, we’ve got to use it, and use it well.”

Fortunately for the Sharks, their pre-season is not only on track, but according to Reece-Edwards, one of the better ones they have had in recent years, if not the best.

“We’re happy with where we are. If I look back two years at this time, we were really just starting out in terms of the way we were going to play and trying a few things out. Now the squad is quite settled and there is a good understanding of what we want to do.”

They start their Super Rugby campaign away to the Cheetahs on Saturday, February 23.

HAVE YOUR SAY: Can the Sharks finally take the next step and break their Super Rugby duck this year? Or do they lack that killer instinct when it really matters? Send your thoughts to Sport24.


  • Kobus van Eeden - 2013-01-29 22:47

    geeez lost 5 semi finals and 3 finals in a row? thats bad! stormers wil be better than the sharks tho

      marius.roodt.33 - 2013-01-30 06:58

      Hey, sakkie. A single swallow doesn't make a summer, much like a single cup doesn't make a champion team.... Or so the next 12 year drought will prove.

      raymond.huxley.5 - 2013-01-30 07:13

      Actually Visser, all the SA teams are pretty much chokers in Super Rugby. What the Aussies this year boys, watch the Aussies!

      jac.ferreira.9 - 2013-01-30 07:38

      LOL Raymond.

      wayne.vandriel - 2013-01-30 08:33

      Watch the Aussies get thumbed by the British & Irish Lions? Sure!

      john.comyn.18 - 2013-01-30 08:38

      Unless they have got a lot better in the last few months the Stormers will beat them again. They were beaten by an under strength Stormers side in the CC. So what's changed? The Stormers have recruited a few stars to plug the holes and the Sharks have done very little recruiting. Bismark is the backbone of the pack and as understand it he is still out for a while. Plum is a very good coach but he is going to be up against it versus the Stormers.

      Kykweer - 2013-01-31 10:22

      John, you forget the sharks traveled to australia and back and still outplayed you in every department. Jis you guys and your terrible memories.

  • sean - 2013-01-29 22:54

    Always a bridesmaid,and never a bride is kinda annoying is it not.The Sharks will be a handful this season,so never underestimate them and as always they will be setting the bar quite high for everyone else.

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 01:01

      There will really be only two SA teams in contention this year. No, not the Bulls and the Kings. The Sharks and the Stormers have been setting the standard in SA rugby for a few seasons now, and it would be up to those two to take the S15 trophy to SA.

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 07:47

      The question though is who to support when the Kings play the Bulls. There is no way I can support the product of unfair political ANC wealings and dealings. But every bone in my body will protest when I support the Bulls. They're just not likeable. Maybe I'll support a draw.

      tieno.punzul - 2013-01-30 07:59

      Setting the new standards for choking yes

      tieno.punzul - 2013-01-30 08:04

      Net terloops, die drie grootbek stormers bymekaar, ha ha, watch hoe choke julle alweer. Bulls 3 koppies, stormers 0, en moenie eers try se dit tel nie blah blah blah, julle default julle eie span se paar cc's mamparas!! Jinne, dis is sekerlik die domste ding wat n stormer ooit gese het, en julle kan n klomp snert praat

      tieno.punzul - 2013-01-30 08:10

      Ah, ek sien die " champion" blogger is weer terug, praat net sulke klomp snert soos op sy kamtige blogs, met net stormers wat hom likes gee shame

      stirrer.stirrer - 2013-01-30 10:29

      Tieno, moes jy nie al by die skool gewees het nie?

      tieno.punzul - 2013-01-30 10:36

      Flou stirrer, nes jou span

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 23:40

      I see Tienkie Wienkie changed his name. What were you three times champion of? Putsondergat se bokdrolspoeg kompetisie?

  • - 2013-01-29 23:02

    Well then do something about it! It annoys us fans even more. We SPEND money to watch you EARN money. Time to deliver.

  • chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 00:58

    How many tackle bags are Hugh Rece-Edwards carrying in that photo? 5? Two in the right hand, one in the left hand. One under the left arm. And one stuffed down his shirt? On a serious note though: The Sharks were their worst enemy last year. They ran out of steam because they have been in the worst position on the log when knock-out rugby started because of their slow start. Every year the Sharks start slowly and finish strong, just to run out of steam towards the end. Or they start strong and stop playing at the half-way mark. If the Sharks start off with a bang and keep the level up, they will be in a better position on the log and will not need to play above themselves to get to the final. Remember Sharks, there's 16 round-robin games to play, not just 8. If you do that you might give the Stormers some good competition. Don't think you'll make it past them this year, though. But I would love to see a Shark/Stormer final. On Kingspark. And we know what happens in Stormer/WP vs. Sharks finals in Durban, right.

      BlouMasjien1 - 2013-01-30 07:13

      "But I would love to see a Shark/Stormer final. On Kingspark" Like the stormers will get past the semifinals on Newlands

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 07:48

      That might be a tough game, yes, because the Stormer's won't face the Bulls, unfortunately. The Bulls won't even make the semi's - again.

      tieno.punzul - 2013-01-30 08:06

      They ran out of steam because they trapped your team on newlands ou tjom, moenie eers try om n shine aan jou span se choking te bring nie

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 23:41

      Just like the Stormers klapped your so-called rugby team on Moftus?

  • gary.doyle.520 - 2013-01-30 04:43

    Sharks are pros and will put those losses in finals behind them and tackle season game by game. They will however not want a repeat of last years playoff travel schedule and will be more than motivated for a good start and consistent performances.

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 05:05

      So true. If they can finish higher on the log, they stand a real chance. But like you said, they should play 16 games and not just 8 for that to happen.

      gary.doyle.520 - 2013-01-30 05:25

      Crazy tough season, Im glad Hugh mentions depth, teams definately need it to survive.

      jac.ferreira.9 - 2013-01-30 07:40

      Well said Gary. I agree wholeheartedly.

  • leon.young.9003 - 2013-01-30 05:24

    With the sharks one never knows come final time its very frustrating for me as a supporter that we loose final after final I would like to know why cant we win finals

      paul.armstrong.58367 - 2013-01-30 12:50

      The problem was how much they had to travel before the super 15 final, who wins after going from Brisbane, to Cape Town and then be expected to play well in Waikato the very next weekend! There should be at least a weeks respite so finals are not as badly affected by jet lag and are consequently more evenly contested. As for the curry cup, no excuses, just outplayed on the day.

  • WernerZA - 2013-01-30 06:06

    The reporter should get it right... The choker tag belongs to the Stormers... No doubt!

      Kobus van Eeden - 2013-01-30 09:32

      werner the sharks losing 5 semi finals en then 3 finals in a row but the stormers are chokers?? LOL not so smart are you

      lesbeen - 2013-01-30 11:22

      @jaycee.. If the CC is nothing to brag about... What does any team except the bulls and Lions have to brag about? Even the lowly Lions have won the super trophy once? I reckon it's a tie... Both Stormers and Sharks are equal chockers?

      sheamus.drager - 2013-01-30 14:40

      @Kobus van Eeden, the Sharks are probably the chokers in a final. On the other hand, they at least make the final.

  • ndyeboreginaldmazawule - 2013-01-30 06:40

    They should just play well this coming season nothing is new. Well the stormers were just better that them last year

      paul.armstrong.58367 - 2013-01-30 12:45

      Um.....not in the super 15 semi final boet! Remember!

  • suidlander.vanwyk - 2013-01-30 07:10

    Yho these people should be called the Ultimate Chokers of SA Rugby

      raymond.huxley.5 - 2013-01-30 07:15

      LOL! Saffas bickering with each other, fighting it out for the choker tag. Gotta love it! :)

      jac.ferreira.9 - 2013-01-30 07:42

      They only mention the losses here. But how many did they win in the last 12 Years.

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 07:50

      And the Kings don't choke, they just plainly puke.

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 07:51

      Raymond. Kind of like the Australian parliament, not so?

      tsaneka1 - 2013-01-30 13:29

      Shut up Raymond

  • nico.eksteen.7 - 2013-01-30 07:12

    LOL. Talk is cheap, need to do it on the pitch.

      Raymond Huxley - 2013-01-30 07:18

      But they can't, mate. They just can't! Chokeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeers!

      jac.ferreira.9 - 2013-01-30 07:44

      Says the Ausie. How many super titles does the Ausies have for the last 10 years. Is that 1, or is there a second in there somewhere ?

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 07:52

      Raymond, I remember one of the biggest chokes last season. Sharks vs. Reds in the qualifying finals.

      tieno.punzul - 2013-01-30 08:08

      Brumbies and reds each a cup, stormers and sharks nadda

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-30 23:44

      Tienkie Winkie, the Australlian supporter. So that is what the Threetimeschampions refers to, the three Super Rugby titles Australian teams have won. Ah I see.........

  • jac.ferreira.9 - 2013-01-30 07:34

    Personally I believe the Sharks can do it this year. Last year they did the impossible by just reaching the final. This year they can go all the way. GO SHARKS !!!!!

      tieno.punzul - 2013-01-30 10:42

      As n bul glo ek hulle kan dit doen, begin net beter aan die begin van season, dis lekker om te sien hoe trap hulle stormers op nuweland, maar dit maak hulle moeg vir die finals. Bulls groete

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-31 07:15

      Poor little Bulls supporter has to find joy in other teams beating the Stormers, because his own team is incapable of doing it. Not even on Moftus.

  • john.thelps - 2013-01-30 07:46

    Shame..cry babies!!!

      chrisin.oz.1 - 2013-01-31 07:18

      Jaycee, don't pretend as if the Currie Cup does not count now that it stands on Newlands and the Bulls have not been able to win it since the previous decade. We all know it is even more prized than the Super Rugby trophy.

  • Kykweer - 2013-01-31 10:36

    Choking is when: you finish top of the log to qualify for a home semi-final and possible home final. You have an extra week to prepare to play against a team that has to fly to Australia and play the defending champions. Then lose, actually be outplayed in every single department.

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