Android app on Google Play

recent posts

Like Sharksworld?

We'd love a contribution towards the running costs...
How much do you like Sharksworld?
Message to the webmaster

recent comments

Currie Cup Log

Team Points
Premier Division
Xerox Golden Lions 10 10 48
Vodacom Blue Bulls 10 8 39
DHL Western Province 10 7 35
Toyota Free State Cheetahs 10 3 24
Cell C Sharks 10 4 22
Steval Pumas 10 3 17
Eastern Province Kings 10 2 12
ORC Griquas 10 1 8
Full log

Categories

Archives

Copyright

© 2008-2012 Sharksworld.

Originally based on a design by Upstart Blogger.

Sport Blogs - BlogCatalog Blog Directory My Zimbio

Error: Unable to create directory wp-content/uploads/2019/08. Is its parent directory writable by the server?

Choices ahead of Lions visit


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Currie Cup, Original Content, Sharks on 19 Aug 2015 at 10:18
Tagged with : , , , , , , , , ,

Gary Gold’s Sharks face their trickiest challenge to date, with the table-topping Golden Lions heading to Kings Park for this weekend’s third round Currie Cup clash. While a surprise opening-round loss to the Pumas away is probably something that can be taken in the team’s stride, one fancies that losing home games in this rather short Currie Cup season is a big no-no when it comes to knockout round qualification.

Gold has stated that he’ll back his young team in this competition and continue to invest in promising players despite any mistakes that might be made. One gets the feeling that this week – when the Sharks really do need to field their strongest available outfit in order to stand a realistic chance of winning – is the first time that the coach may have to make some tough choices.

Selections thus far have been mostly consistent, apart from the usual injury-enforced changes. Dale Chadwick appears to be back in training and could potentially replace Juan Schoeman at loosehead, since the Sharks cannot gamble with anything less then their most experienced front row for this clash. Thomas du Toit, as de facto first-choice tighthead, is going to have his work cut out for him and it would be very reassuring to have Chadwick on the other side, with all his accumulated learning in this competition. Francois Kleinhans could and should come in for the injured Jean Deysel at openside flank in the only other change to a pack that needs to discover its mojo blindingly fast.

It’s in the backline, though, that changes could come this week, with scrumhalf perhaps the most obvious of those. Gold has done admirably to back Stefan Ungerer, but can he really take the gamble of not starting the vastly experienced and in-form Michael Claassens in the number 9 jersey against the Lions? Anticipating some up-front struggles, it must become even more vital to have a scrumhalf who has done it all before and shown the ability to control matters behind a pack that isn’t necessarily dominating. Lionel Cronje has probably done enough to keep his spot (in the absence of any real competition), although once again, Joe Pietersen could be considered for a role closer to the action, given his experience.

The midfield also hasn’t exactly fired yet and with Paul Jordaan looking fit again, Gold must surely be tempted to make a change or two. Heimar Williams has been solid, if not remarkable, with his tendency to seek too much ground in contact resulting in a fair bit of lost possession against the Kings. Wandile Mjekevu has looked unsure of himself at outside centre and again, leaving that vital channel vulnerable to the inevitable Lions forays seems unwise. Gold will, I’m sure, look to pair Jordaan with either Andre Esterhuizen (who has been good on the wing) or Williams. A potential return to the side for S’bura Sithole this week again muddies the waters, but could indeed be the catalyst for a return to midfield for Esterhuizen.



88 Comments

Add Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.