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VIDEO: Sharks' roadmap to success

The Sharks, the most successful team never to have won a Super Rugby title, are hoping to get rid of that unwanted moniker in the United Rugby Championship.

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World Cup-winning former Springbok captain John Smit believes the current shiver of Sharks can reach their full potential with the correct ‘management’.

The Sharks, even before the arrival of World Cup-winning captain Siyamthanda Kolisi in 2021, already had a suite of Stirling stars on their books.

Springboks and Boks to be like Thomas du Toit, Sikhumbuzo Notshe, Jaden Hendrikse, Grant Williams, Lukhanyo Am, Makazole Mapimpi and Aphelele Fassi were well-entrenched in the Shark Tank.

Throw in the likes of now Scotland-capped Dylan Richardson and recently capped Bok Ntuthuko Mchunu and you have a well-established and solid squad.

More recent high-profile acquisitions include Wallaby Ben Tapuai and Bok centre Rohan Janse van Rensburg.

It was also with much fanfare that Springbok enforcer Eben Etzebeth announced his arrival at the Shark Tank in Durban just over a week ago.

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Smit said he thought the Sharks signings before 2022 would already give them the edge – but they were knocked out in the quarterfinals in the inaugural URC season.

“A year ago they had a star-studded international squad,” Smit said in URC round table media event.

Despite the most recent ‘big name’ signings, there are still doubters about the Sharks’ ability to go all the way.

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“I have to refer to perspective and reality,” Smit said, adding: “That [those signings] get fans really excited and grows expectations.

“[However,] it does make a coach’s and a manager’s job a lot harder.

“The modern game is all about management and what your Director of Rugby or coach treat the young squad with no big names or a squad with big names and international stars.

“In this day and age, every team has access to information and statistics.

“The analysis is at a different level to where it was when we played.”

He said it is not so much the information, but what you do with it.

“It is the delivery of that information and the management of those characters,” the now-retired Bok skipper said.

“That is the only thing that is going to allow the Sharks to reach their full potential of what that squad looks like on paper.”

– Watch the John Smit interview below –

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