Back in Action – Featured Durban Blog

Back in Action:

The Cell C Sharks have enjoyed a well-deserved break following a gruelling eight day period that involved three tough clashes, with three victories to propel us to second spot on the log, just one point behind the Free State Cheetahs.

But there is no time for resting on laurels and this week’s Currie Cup clash against Western Province at Newlands presents the ideal opportunity to maintain our march towards the knock-out rounds.

“Things are sitting really well for us at this stage and the break came at the right time after the three games; the boys needed both physical and mental rest and now they’re ready for the next challenge where we’ll hopefully maintain the momentum we’ve built up,” explains Cell C Sharks forwards coach Jaco Pienaar.

Defence is an important component of the game and something the Cell C Sharks pride themselves on. It reflects the players’ attitudes – both collectively and individually – and as the best defensive side in the competition, we will look to continue in this vein.

“Our defence was tested during that period; playing the Lions and Bulls, both of whom are attacking teams, it was a big challenge for us but I think we came through nicely,” he admits.

Western Province have lost a number of players to the Springbok cause but Pienaar is adamant that they still have a potent pack of forwards.

“It’s also not like they have all of a sudden lost their forwards to the Boks, the pack we will face has been together for the whole Currie Cup,

“Province have a really good pack, a good scrum, good set-piece and quality players, it’s going to be a massive challenge for the forwards.”

But it’s not only about upfront, although that’s where the game is won and lost

“They are dangerous from counter-attack and turn-over ball, they will feed off any scraps that come their way so you have to be clinical and accurate in your execution.

“But for us, it’s all about momentum, about getting better and improving each week, and playing good rugby. That way the results will take care of themselves.”

With more than half of the pool stages of the competition remaining, the Cell C Sharks’ depth will be tested, but to date, has proven worthy of the challenge.

“I am happy with our depth; playing a double round in this Currie Cup means your depth is going to be tested, you need a healthy squad.”

And having lost player to the Boks ourselves, this presents opportunities for others.

“Someone like Jacques Vermeulen has jumped at the chance and he’s playing great rugby. Two man of the match awards in a row tells a good news story and the Currie Cup always presents opportunities for the young guys to gain selection and step up to the plate.”

The post Back in Action appeared first on Sharks Rugby.

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