I think the Sharks like making things tough for themselves
Sharks No.8 Ryan Kankowski believes that a convincing start is essential if his team are to beat the Stormers at Newlands on Saturday.
The Sharks built their surge into the semifinal on some convincing first-half performances and Kankowski is adamant that if they are to become the first team to beat the Stormers in Cape Town this season then they need to take control from the first whistle.
"A fast start is massive," Kankowski said. "I think it's very important how you start a game and that's something we've been concentrating on during the later parts of the competition.
"When you let any team in at the beginning, it's very hard to come back at the end. So we've really been focusing on building pressure on the beginning and keeping it."
The speedy loose forward who has been in superb form recently believes that the Sharks' late revival this season is due to the fact that the team thrives on pressure.
"I think the Sharks like making things tough for themselves - we only play (well) when we are under a bit of pressure and that's the way it's worked out for us.
"So we just have to keep building on that for the rest of the competition," he said.
Kankowski has been impressive at line-out time in the last few weeks, and he said that although his team have their work cut out for them up against the imposing Stormers locks they have done their homework and are confident of being able to put them under pressure.
"They've got the tallest line-out and have been going really well in the competition. Eben (Etzebeth) and Andries (Bekker) are both brilliant line-out options.
"We've been watching some footage of some of their games and come up with our own plans, so hopefully we can execute them on the weekend," he said.