Sharks hurting after defeat

    2015-03-10 13:01

    Durban - Despite the frustration at having lost their Super Rugby match against the Stormers on Saturday, the Sharks are determined to take the good and look to build on that ahead of the Cheetahs clash.

    The Durbanites believe they were in the game for large parts of the match, and if it weren’t for a game-changing penalty try, the six point deficit may well have been overturned given the character the side has shown in the past.

    “We’re very disappointed with the result. Everyone is hurting, not just the forwards. We know that our set-piece didn’t function as well as we would have liked and that’s an area we need to get right on Saturday,” assistant coach Brad MacLeod-Henderson told the Sharks website editor Michael Marnewick.

    “But in the first half I thought we played some good rugby, we had a few chances and if we can build on that first half this Saturday, it will go really well.

    Brad MacLeod-Henderson admitted that the penalty try was a big turning point in the game.

    “We were just six points behind after a penalty by Pat, but we didn’t exit from the kick-off, were charged down and they got the penalty try, so it was definitely a big momentum shift.”

    The scrums didn’t always go to plan and something they will be concentrating on in training this week.

    “We struggled at scrum time, but in the first half we had one or two good scrums as well, so we were probably a bit inconsistent. They seemed to get the roll on us and unfortunately we lost that area of the game.

    “Scrummaging is an all-eight effort and we were a bit inconsistent. So on the day we were very disappointed with our scrummaging. But there’s a possibility that Jannie (du Plessis) and Beast (Mtawarira), as well as Mouritz Botha could be available for this week, so there are a few guys coming back.

    “We have three quality tightheads and three quality looseheads so we just need to make sure that the eight who start and the guys who come off the bench are all on the same page and put in a better performance in the scrummaging area than this past weekend.”

    He admitted that there is a lot of obvious disappointment in the camp and with one win from four matches, “It’s not the start we wanted. But we have another game this Saturday which we’re looking forward to.”

    He believes that having JP Pietersen, Frans Steyn and Willem Alberts back for the first time this season marks a positive development for the side.

    The coach expects them to add greater value as they play more.

    “They are quality players, but it takes time to settle back into the team. They’ve got one game under the belt and I’m sure they’re just going to get better and better.”

    Pinpointing what is needed to right the wrongs, he identified two main areas: execution and taking chances.

    “It’s about making sure we go out there and execute against the opposition and we take our opportunities when they come. We’re four games in, there’s still a long way to go, but we need to start making sure we’re more accurate in what we’re looking at doing.”

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