Sharks coach: We've been 'beaten up' twice in a row
Cape Town - Sharks coach Robert du Preez admits they were "beaten up" in their 37-14 loss to the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.
The Bulls have been rampant against South African opposition so far in Super Rugby 2019, winning all three of their local derbies comfortably.
The Sharks, meanwhile, now go into their bye week having lost their last two.
It is a case of back to the drawing board for Du Preez and his charges, who started the season with so much promise after hammering the Sunwolves away from home in week one and then returning to Durban to get past the Blues.
But, two weekends ago against the Stormers and then this past Saturday against the Bulls, Du Preez says his side has been outmuscled.
"The derbies are unbelievably physical. The team that is the most aggressive and physical comes out on top and we've been beaten up two weeks in a row now," Du Preez said.
The coach praised the work done by the Bulls so far this year.
"It was another clinical performance from the Bulls. They dismantled us, especially in that first 20 minutes where we just couldn't get going wit those penalties we conceded," he said.
"Guys that have come in like Schalk (Brits) and Duane (Vermeulen) have made a massive difference.
"You can see that Handre (Pollard) is controlling everything in the backline, so I think they're in a good place and they've done really well.
"Coming up here in a local derby is always going to be tough ... it was like a Test match."