Plumtree: Sharks deserved more

Sun, 28 Apr 2013 07:28
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Sharks coach John Plumtree bemoaned his team's scant return from their much-improved performance against the Chiefs at the weekend.

Sharks coach John Plumtree bemoaned his team's scant return from their much-improved performance against the Chiefs in Hamilton at the weekend.

In a replay of the 2012 Super Rugby Final the Chiefs overcome the Sharks 37-29 in an entertaining encounter at Waikato Stadium.

The victory saw the defending champions stop a two game skid and climb back to the top of the New Zealand Conference standings - as both teams fought hard throughout the contest.

However, the Sharks were cruelly denied an crucial second bonus point when regular captain Keegan Daniel - dropped to the bench for this match - was penalised at the breakdown right on the final hooter.

Aaron Cruden slotted the penalty to take the game beyond the seven-point margin, and deny the visitors a losing bonus point, as they settled for only a four-try bonus point in their first-match of a month-long marathon in Australasia.

Plumtree said he felt the Sharks deserved "something a bit more" from the game.

"We got one [bonus point], we should've had two."

He admitted that going down 0-24 inside the first quarter, as the Chiefs threatened to run riot, was costly.

"Obviously the bad start [let us down], you can't let a side like the Chiefs get off to a start like that and expect to come back," the Sharks coach said.

"But I was really proud of the boys. They had a task and they stuck to it.

"We were critical of our performances over the last few weeks.

"Our attack had got predictable and tonight we got rid of that. In this match we played a lot more so it was good to see that.

"We hadn't scored a try for three weeks and we scored four in this match."

Sharks skipper of the day, Jean Deysel, also praised his players' resilience.

"I'm so proud of the boys for fighting back," he said.

"It was unfortunate we couldn't end with a win."

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Team P W D L Pts
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Force 9 1 0 8 6
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Chiefs 9 8 0 1 37
Crusaders 8 7 0 1 32
Hurricanes 9 6 0 3 31
Highlanders 9 6 0 3 28
Blues 8 4 1 3 20
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
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Cheetahs 9 2 0 7 12
Sunwolves 8 1 0 7 7
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Team P W D L Pts
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Sharks 9 4 1 4 23
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Kings 7 1 0 6 4