Sharks celebrating an 'amazing year'

Sun, 21 Oct 2012 14:38
Large daniel plumtree lambie 630 Large patrick lambie 630 Large deysel   daniel 630 Large patrick lambie kicks v bull Large lwazi mvovo try 630 Large kyle cooper charges 630

Sharks coach John Plumtree hailed 2012 as a year he will never forget, after his team reached their third consecutive Final.

Sharks coach John Plumtree hailed 2012 as a year he will never forget, after his team moved a step closer towards a third Currie Cup title in five years.

The Sharks, who won South Africa's premier domestic competition in 2008 and 2010 and will feature in their third consecutive Currie Cup Final, will host Western Province in Durban this coming Saturday - after their 20-3 victory over the Blue Bulls at the weekend.

Springbok utility back Patrick Lambie kicked 15 points to add to a late try by Lwazi Mvovo, as the Durban side dominated against the visitors from Pretoria.

Plumtree's men have already played and lost two back-to-back major finals - last year's Currie Cup Final against the Golden Lions, and the Super Rugby Final, when they were beaten by the Chiefs.

"It's been an amazing year," Plumtree said.

"To be in a Super 15 Final and then three months later to be hosting a Currie Cup Final is really great.

"It's a year that I won't forget. I mean obviously we've got a big week and still need to play 80 minutes, but I'm really proud of everyone in the team, in the squad and management."

Plumtree said he was relieved about securing the victory after he had sleepless nights in the build-up to the match.

The match was largely a kicking contest, especially early on, as both sides seemed reluctant to hold on to the ball.

"It looked like both sides were quite nervous, especially in that first 15-20 minutes," the Sharks coach said.

"I was particularly pleased with that 20 minutes before half time, but after that our line-out didn't function too well and we didn't do too much of attacking in the game."

He praised his charges for their defensive efforts and for remaining disciplined on the night.

"I guess we exerted a bit of pressure and got reward for it," Plumtree said.

"We talk about our defence and discipline being good, not giving away dumb penalties. I think we did that."

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Team P W D L Pts
Sharks 12 10 0 2 47
Western Province 12 7 0 5 37
Golden Lions 12 6 0 6 35
Blue Bulls 12 5 0 7 32
Free State Cheetahs 12 6 0 6 31
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Griquas 12 4 0 8 26