AUDIO: 'This team will go a long way'

Tue, 15 May 2018 06:00

SUPER RUGBY REACTION: The Sharks are not the most consistent team and disciplinary lapses remain an issue.

However, coach Robert du Preez believes the Durban-based outfit is going places.

The Sharks, able to comfortably beat New Zealand teams, lost 33-39 to the Bulls in Pretoria at the weekend - after having had to come back from gifting their opponents a 17-0 lead.

The defeat left them in a three-way tie for eighth place - the last play-off spot - with just five league matches remaining.

The Jaguares officially occupy eighth place (with six wins), followed by the Bulls (five wins) and the Sharks (four victories).

All three have 24 points, with two struggling Australian teams the -  Waratahs (26 points, with six matches remaining) and the Rebels (25 points with five matches remaining) - just ahead of them.

"We have two games left before the June break - against the Chiefs at home, then the Jaguares away - and we're very much in the race," Du Preez said.

"It's all to play for and I have every confidence in this team.

"To come back from a 17-point deficit showed massive fighting spirit.

"This is a great team and we're going to go a long way."

Du Preez pointed to the Sharks' fighting as the reason for his optimism.

"I thought the boys, to have come back from a huge deficit, and be in the game right to the death, I have to commend them on that," he said.

He admitted discipline, or rather a lack of it, cost them dearly - with two players, Curwin Bosch in the ninth minute and Lukhanyo Am in the 67th minute, receiving yellow cards.

"That [first] card [to Bosch] was very costly," Du Preez said.

"Discipline let us down, at 17 points down, a deficit like that was always going to be hard to come back from."

"I also thought our exits weren't great early on, not kicking the ball into touch three times put us under pressure. Those two issues weren't great ways to start the game."

@rugby365com

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sat, 26 May 2018
Bulls v Brumbies 13h05 Loftus Versfeld
Exeter Chiefs v Saracens 14h00 London
Stormers v Lions 15h15 Newlands
Leinster v Scarlets 17h00 Dublin
Fri, 01 June 2018
Highlanders v Hurricanes 07h35 Dunedin
Sat, 02 June 2018
Blues v Rebels 05h15 Eden Park
Chiefs v Crusaders 07h35 Hamilton
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Waratahs 12 6 1 5 31
Rebels 12 6 0 6 30
Reds 11 4 0 7 18
Brumbies 11 3 0 8 16
Sunwolves 12 2 0 10 10
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 13 11 0 2 50
Hurricanes 12 10 0 2 45
Chiefs 12 8 0 4 37
Highlanders 11 7 0 4 32
Blues 12 3 0 9 17
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 13 7 0 6 36
Jaguares 13 8 0 5 34
Sharks 13 5 1 7 28
Bulls 12 5 0 7 24
Stormers 13 5 0 8 23