Can WP contain 'dynamic' Sharks?
Western Province's toughest task in the Currie Cup Final this weekend will be to deal with the Sharks' dynamism.
Western Province forwards coach Matt Proudfoot believes that the toughest task for his side this weekend will be to deal with the Sharks' dynamism.
The Sharks managed to beat Province at home and away in their two Currie Cup clashes this season and Proudfoot admitted that his team, who rely on a more structured approach, battled to deal with the Durban side's fluid style.
"The Sharks are a dynamic side, whatever they do it is dynamic, I think that is where they are a little bit different from us - we tend to be quite a structured side and they are quite dynamic.
"They have got incredible individuals in that side and they use them to apply an extreme amount of pressure on you.
"It is not one aspect of the game that you can say the Sharks are this or the Sharks are that, they tend to be quite a well-rounded side and they apply a lot of pressure in different areas," he explained.
Proudfoot has been impressed with the way the young Sharks tight five have stood up in the absence of their Springboks this season, and expects them to be a formidable prospect at full strength on Saturday.
"They are doing a fantastic job as a group of tight forwards and I am sure that they will look to exert maximum pressure on us this weekend. They have been boosted by the two Springbok props and they have also got Kyle Cooper playing some good rugby so they are really a good tight group of forwards," he said.
However, Proudfoot backed his own young tight five to stand up to the challenge at what is expected to be a wet Kings Park on Saturday, explaining that they have shown impressive development this season.
"I have been very pleased with the way that these guys have developed technically, physically and mentally.
"I think the key for us is to be composed and have resilience, they have got a Springbok front row and we know that they will be determined at scrum-time so I think we are going to have to be resilient and challenge each set phase for what it is.
"I think our line-out has been good all season and I think we have to gain confidence from that and then challenge them when they bring the heat at scrum-time," he said.
Proudfoot said that with quality players in both forward packs, it is likely to boil down to which side manages the pressure best.
"I think it is going to be a very typical final, I think the weather is going to neutralise the two teams and it is going to very much be a game where pressure is the key word," he said.
By Michael de Vries