Jaguares perfect prep for Sharks

    2016-03-07 16:30

    Cape Town - The Sharks had to muscle their way to a 19-15 victory over the Jaguares in Durban on Saturday, but in the end it was a crucial win for coach Gary Gold's men. 

    The Sharks have now won two out of two this season, and they now travel to Cape Town for a South African derby against the Stormers on Saturday.

    "It was critical … it’s important to beat the teams that are in our pool. Today would have been a proper banana skin if we had lost at home," Gold said immediately after the match. 

    Gold had said in the build-up to the clash that he was expecting a 'Test match' against the Jaguares, and the physical nature of the affair suggested that he was right. 

    And, according to the Sharks mentor, getting over the line against the Jaguares was the perfect preparation for his side's five fixtures against new Zealand opposition this season. 

    "We’ve got Kiwi teams in our pool and tonight was a good exercise as to how we’re going to have to deal with the Kiwi teams," said Gold.

    "The off-loading game, how hard we’re going to have to work to catch up on the inside and our work-rate off the ball.

    "As long as we keep improving, I’m satisfied."

    Gold added that he expected the Jaguares to be a formidable side this season.

    "I think that if they don’t have too many injuries over the next couple of months they’re going to be a very hard team to play against," he said.

    "They’re a good team. They ask a lot of questions when they’ve got ball in hand.

    "Where these guys are lethal, as you saw tonight, is that if you turn the ball over they can hurt you from their own 22 and run the length of the field."

    The Jaguares, meanwhile, have a bye this coming weekend.

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