Sharks leave injured stars behind

Sun, 21 Apr 2013 15:36
Large tendai mtawarira injured Large plumtreetraining630 Large andries coetzee injured Large john plumtree points Large john plumtree sharks gestur

It was a bruised and battered Sharks team that left South Africa on Sunday en route to New Zealand, leaving behind a number of injured players.

It was a bruised and battered Sharks team that left South Africa on Sunday en route to New Zealand, leaving behind a number of injured players.

Following their disappointing 6-12 loss to the Cheetahs in  dour arm-wrestle in dire conditions in Durban at the weekend, the Sharks now face a very demanding four-match Australasian trip.

It starts when they take on the Chiefs in a replay of last year's Final, in Hamilton on Saturday (April 27), before they tackle the Highlanders in Dunedin, the Reds (whom they beat in a preliminary play-off match last year) in Brisbane and conclude the trip when they head to Perth to face the Western Force.

However, the encounter with the Cheetahs have come at a heavy cost.

Springbok prop Tendai Mtawarira sustained a calf injury, while Lions loan player Andries Coetzee went off with a suspected dislocated shoulder.

Sharks coach John Plumtree admitted the injuries were not ideal for the struggling outfit.

"It's not looking good for Beast [Mtawarira] and he won't be on the plane," Plumtree told a media scrum in Durban.

"He's probably out for four weeks," the coach added.

"I was really disappointed about Andries [Coetzee], because I thought he played really well too. He could be out for a couple of months."

Also missing the tour with injury are backs Lwazi Mvovo (hand), Tim Whitehead (hand), Butch James (knee), Louis Ludik (shoulder) and forwards Bismarck du Plessis (knee), Jacques Botes (hand) and Willem Alberts (shoulder).

It was not just the injuries that disappointed Plumtree, who felt the encounter with the Cheetahs was a game they should have won.

"We created plenty of opportunities and I thought we played all the rugby," Plumtree said.

"I think the Cheetahs played no rugby. They just kicked the ball away all night. We wanted to be a bit more ambitious and as positive as we could, but weren't entirely accurate.

"Losing [this match] is a big set-back.

"We needed that win big time before going on tour, but didn't quite get it and that puts us under a fair bit of pressure now."

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Fri, 27 May 2016
Hurricanes v Highlanders 07h35 Wellington
Waratahs v Chiefs 09h40 Sydney
Boland v Eagles 13h00 Wellington
Free State Cheetahs v Pumas 13h00 Bloemfontein
Kings v Jaguares 17h00 Ascoli Piceno
Border v Falcons 17h00 East London
Sat, 28 May 2016
Blues v Crusaders 07h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Sunwolves 09h40 Canberra
Western Province v Griquas 10h15 Newlands
Blue Bulls v Leopards 12h15 Loftus Versfeld
Stormers v Cheetahs 13h00 DHL Newlands
Namibia v Griffons 13h00 Windhoek
Golden Lions v EP Kings 13h00 Johannesburg
Saracens v Exeter Chiefs 14h00 London
Bulls v Lions 15h05 Loftus Versfeld
Leinster v Connacht 16h30 Edinburgh
Sun, 29 May 2016
Rebels v Force 06h05 Melbourne
England v Wales 14h00 London
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Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Waratahs 11 6 0 5 30
Brumbies 11 7 0 4 29
Rebels 10 5 0 5 23
Reds 13 3 1 9 16
Force 11 2 0 9 11
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Chiefs 11 9 0 2 42
Crusaders 11 9 0 2 41
Highlanders 11 8 0 3 37
Hurricanes 11 7 0 4 36
Blues 11 6 1 4 29
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Bulls 11 7 1 3 32
Stormers 11 6 1 4 32
Cheetahs 11 3 0 8 16
Sunwolves 11 1 1 9 9
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 11 8 0 3 37
Sharks 12 7 1 4 35
Jaguares 11 2 0 9 13
Kings 11 1 0 10 4