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Lewies to get his big break – Everitt


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Currie Cup, Original Content, Sharks on 24 Sep 2013 at 15:17
Tagged with : , , , ,

Sharksworld caught up with Sharks backline coach Sean Everitt this afternoon, ahead of the team’s big clash with the Lions on Friday. Here’s what he had to say.

Sharksworld: Hi Sean. Congrats on a great win against the Cheetahs. What made the difference this week?
Sean Everitt: Thanks Rob. I think we were a lot more accurate in our execution, from our set pieces all the way through. We kicked well and kept them under pressure with our kick-chase. I think we smothered them a little bit and then forced them to make mistakes, which we capitalised on. There was also just a lot more energy and enthusiasm in the performance than there was the previous week.

SW: Looking ahead to the Lions – any risk of complacency within the squad after such a good win?
SE: There’s always a concern, but with this group that we have now, they know that they’re growing. It’s part of a process and although it did go well against Free State, we’re far from the finished product. Also, there are individuals within this group that are playing on the weekend that need to stand up and perform so that they can come into contention for selection for the run-in to the competition. I don’t think the boys will be complacent – they know what the Lions are about – so it’s just a case of getting out there and repeating the performance. That’s what makes good teams – consistency. We are obviously performance-oriented. We’re not thinking too much about the log points but for the individuals in the team – who want to perform well for themselves – they can only do that within the team structures. So we’re thinking about ourselves – we had a good video session and saw the rewards of working really hard on the field. The guys are in good spirits and they’ll be motivated by that.

SW: The Sharks haven’t won a Currie Cup game at Ellis Park since 2009. Has that had any effect on this week’s preparations?
SE:To be honest, we haven’t spoken about the history of the fixture at Ellis Park and we haven’t looked at any isolated scenarios or log standings. We’re just totally focused on our own performance and believe that if we get it right on the field, the result will take care of itself and in turn, the log standings will improve as well.

SW: What about the Lions themselves? Anything that the Sharks need to do differently when playing against them?
SE:As we know, the Lions have scored some fantastic tries in the tournament and they’re playing with a lot of energy. They put a lot of pace on the ball with their backs and they play with a lot of width. We’ve got to take care of that – you know you can only do all the things that the Lions are doing if you’ve got momentum from set piece. We’re going to have to put a lot of emphasis on our set piece to try and nullify their attack from there and obviously have width on our defence to try and counteract their attack.

SW: There’s obviously been a bit of disruption this week with losing two players to the Bok cause. Pieter-Steph du Toit and Marcell Coetzee probably had the highest work rate for the Sharks against the Cheetahs…
SE:Absolutely – their performances for us on the weekend were huge. At the same time, we’re hugely excited for them and their opportunity to play with the best in the country. There are also opportunities within our squad as well; for example Stephan Lewies comes into the place of Pieter-Steph du Toit and it’s a massive opportunity for him. It just shows – he’s been in the junior ranks for three years and been playing really well and deserves an opportunity. It’s exciting for him and we’re obviously excited to bring those youngsters in, because it motivates them to know that if they perform well they do get opportunities. So it works both ways really, it’s good for the Sharks too in that other players – such as a Kyle Cooper or Wiehahn Herbst, for instance – will now want to try even harder to also get noticed by Heyneke Meyer and get a shot themselves.

SW: Albert van den Berg was spotted taking part in the practice on Monday. It’s Lewies who’s going to play though, right?
SE:Albert’s been helping us out at the line-outs at the Sharks – we’ve been using him as a consultant and on Monday he came in and helped us out. There’s no better way to do that than taking part yourself, so there’s no real need for anyone to get excited – it’s purely from a coaching point of view.

SW: What about other changes – obviously you’ll need to replace Marcell. Any further rotation amongst the forwards?
SE: Justin Downey’s going to come in in the number 6 jersey, to replace Marcell. He was on the bench for 3 games but didn’t get a lot of opportunities, so it’s nice that he’ll get a chance to start. Brynard will stay on the bench, because he started twice earlier in the week.

SW: And otherwise?
SE: No, there won’t be any other changes this week.

SW: Thanks for the time, Sean and best of luck for the weekend.
SE: Thanks very much. Keep well.



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