Sharks miss their cutting edge

Sat, 04 Aug 2012 12:30
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After their unlikely charge into the final, the Sharks' Super Rugby fairytale came to a brutal end in Hamilton where they were blown off the park.

After their unlikely charge into the final, the Sharks' Super Rugby fairytale came to a brutal end in Hamilton where they were blown off the park by the Chiefs.

The Durban outfit emerged as the form side in the competition after the June international break, playing some breathtaking rugby to knock the Australian and South African conference champions out away from home on consecutive weekends, but ultimately their gruelling schedule caught up with them and they were handed a crushing 37-6 defeat in the final.

Victory would have made it the most remarkable campaign in Super Rugby history considering the obstacles they faced, but they were shut down by a Chiefs side that reaped the benefits of their impressive consistency this season to clinch their first title.

The Sharks started with their usual vigour and even had the Chiefs under pressure in the early stages, but failed to take advantage of their dominance as the ruthless streak that saw them defeat the Reds and the Stormers deserted them in the slippery conditions at the Waikato Stadium.

Sharks captain Keegan Daniel admitted that his side were simply not sharp enough against a clinical Chiefs outfit that took advantage of every mistake they made.

He said: "I think that is what finals rugby is about, you get so few opportunities to score points so you need to capitalise and although we dominated the game early on we did not convert that into points and when they got one or two opportunities they managed to get on the scoreboard.

"Ultimately what probably lost us the game was our conversion rate," Daniel explained.

The Sharks skipper said that the defeat was particularly hard to take considering his side's tough road to the final, but added that the Chiefs were clearly the better side on the day and deserved their resounding victory.

"It has been an incredible journey from where we were after the loss against the Lions, we clawed our way back into this competition and gave ourselves a chance so it is disappointing that tonight we just couldn't pull it off.

"The hurdle was just a bit too big, but no excuses I thought the Chiefs were outstanding tonight. they have been outstanding all season so they are deseved winners of the competition so hats off to Craig [Clarke] and his boys," he said.

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Fri, 23 March 2018
Connacht v Edinburgh 22h00 Sportsground
Munster v Scarlets 22h00 Thomond Park
Dragons v Cheetahs 22h00 Rodney Parade
Ospreys v Leinster 22h00 Liberty Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Ulster 22h00 Cardiff Arms Park
Glasgow Warriors v Zebre 22h00 Scotstoun
Kings v Treviso 22h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Crusaders v Bulls 06h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Sharks 08h45 Melbourne
Bath v Exeter Chiefs 19h45 Recreation Ground
Sat, 24 March 2018
Sunwolves v Chiefs 04h15 Tokyo
Hurricanes v Highlanders 06h35 Wellington
Saracens v Harlequins 15h00 London
London Irish v Gloucester 15h00 Madejski Stadium
Sale Sharks v Worcester Warriors 15h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Stormers v Reds 15h15 Newlands
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 17h30 Kingston Park
Jaguares v Lions 21h40 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
Sun, 18 March 2018
Waratahs v Rebels 51 | 27
Sat, 17 March 2018
Jaguares v Reds 7 | 18
Wales v France 14 | 13
Lions v Sunwolves 40 | 38
England v Ireland 15 | 24
Stormers v Blues 37 | 20
Italy v Scotland 27 | 29
Brumbies v Sharks 24 | 17
Highlanders v Crusaders 25 | 17
Fri, 16 March 2018
Cardiff Blues v Treviso 31 | 25
Edinburgh v Munster 12 | 6
Chiefs v Bulls 41 | 28
Sun, 11 March 2018
Wales v Italy 38 | 14
Sat, 10 March 2018
Jaguares v Waratahs 38 | 28
France v England 22 | 16
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Rebels 4 3 0 1 15
Waratahs 4 2 1 1 10
Reds 3 2 0 1 8
Brumbies 4 2 0 2 8
Sunwolves 4 0 0 4 2
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Highlanders 3 3 0 0 13
Hurricanes 3 2 0 1 10
Crusaders 4 2 0 2 10
Chiefs 3 2 0 1 8
Blues 4 1 0 3 6
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 5 4 0 1 19
Stormers 5 2 0 3 9
Sharks 4 1 1 4 9
Bulls 4 1 0 3 5
Jaguares 4 1 0 3 4