Sharks embracing tough start
REACTION: The Reds have struggled in the last few seasons of Super Rugby, but they will be no pushovers this time around says Sharks head coach Robert du Preez.
The Sharks depart for Australia on Saturday and they will start their Super Rugby campaign against the Reds next Friday in Brisbane.
The Queenslanders have strengthened their squad significantly ahead of this year's tournament and many feel they will be a tough team to beat in 2017.
Wallabies Scott Higginbotham, Quade Cooper, Stephen Moore and Leroy Houston have all returned to Brisbane. They have also secured the services of veteran loose forward George Smith as well.
"They [Reds] have assembled a really good squad," said Du Preez.
"Stephen Moore, the Australian captain, is with them. They also got George Smith and [Scott] Higginbotham and some really good backs. They will certainly be a different proposition this time around."
A two-match tour to Australia is a tough start for the Durban-based franchise, but Du Preez is optimistic that his team can pick up some valuable points on the road.
After their match against the Reds next week the Sharks will travel to Canberra to face the Brumbies before returning to Durban to take on the Waratahs.
"We would like to win both [Reds and Brumbies] games," Du Preez added.
"We definitely want to improve on the previous two [pre-season] games that we had. We will concentrate on our processes and getting two wins out of the tour will be fantastic."