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    Du Preez praises dominant Sharks defence

    2019-05-03 13:12

    Cape Town - Sharks coach Robert du Preez has praised his side's defensive efforts in their 21-21 draw against the Crusaders in Christchurch on Friday. 

    The Sharks were leading after the hooter, but a try after hooter and then a conversion from Crusaders flyhalf Mitch Hunt secured a draw for the hosts. 

    The visitors endured a period of high-pressure red-zone attack in the closing stages and eventually they buckled.

    It was still a heroic defensive effort from Du Preez's men.

    "We were left heartbroken in the end, but you can't really argue with the three tries that they scored," Du Preez said after the match.

    "We battled to get our hands on the ball in the second half and the territory wasn't going our way either. It was always going to be difficult against a quality team like the Crusaders to keep them out.

    "The bench made a good impact when they came on. The last five minutes was really telling and I was really proud of the boys with their tackling at the end there. We made so many tackles and some of them were really dominant."

    When asked to describe the side's mental state after the match, Du Preez believed they were in a  good space.

    "They're disappointed. To come here and get away with a win is really difficult. They're disappointed, but on the other hand we're happy that we got the two points," he said.

    "The way we played tonight and over the last two weeks just showed the resolve of the squad. It'll be a big confidence booster ahead of Hamilton."

    The Sharks finish their Australasian tour with a trip to the Chiefs next weekend.

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