Wide-running Bulls worry Sharks

Thu, 03 Oct 2013 07:24
Large visser hand off mvovo.jpg63 Large sean everitt media Large sean everitt piece of paper

The Sharks may be sitting pretty at the top of the Currie Cup table, but they are not about to rest on their proverbial laurels.
 

The Sharks may be sitting pretty at the top of the Currie Cup table, but they are not about to rest on their proverbial laurels.

It is the Blue Bulls' newfound attacking form that caused a few flutters in Durban this week, ahead of the two teams' Round Nine encounter at Loftus Versfeld on Friday.

The Sharks beat the Golden Lions 31-25 last week, when the Bulls thrashed Griquas 52-10 in Kimberley.

Apart from the fact that no team has been able to put that kind of score on Griquas in Kimberley this season, the Bulls also showed a willingness to play a more expansive game.

Given that the Lions, another team keen on taking the ball wide at every opportunity, scored three tries against the Sharks, the men from Durban felt they needed to tighten up their defence a bit.

Sharks backline coach Sean Everitt feels his team's defence has been good this season, given that they have conceded just 19 tries in eight matches. Only Western Province's 18 tries are better.

"We have worked hard on our defence," Everitt told this website.

"However, when we got that lead in the first half [against the Lions] we let ourselves down defensively. We have worked on that this week, to ensure it doesn't happen again.

"You have to give credit to the Lions - they do score lots of tries and score in every game. They do play an exciting brand of rugby," he said of a Lions team that has scored 34 tries in eight starts.

Everitt admitted that against these teams that run from everywhere, if you don't concentrate for the full 80 minutes then you are going to leak tries.

"The Bulls played with a lot of width against Griquas [last week], so the challenge will be the same for us this week."

The Sharks mentor said their defensive lapses last week were the result of a lack of concentration, rather than issues with the system.

"The Lions put you under pressure by going wide," he said, adding: "If you don't adjust accordingly, you tend to make mistakes and everyone looks at the last pass, rather than where the mistake happened at the beginning, which is at the ruck."

By Jan de Koning

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Fri, 29 September 2017
Sharks v Golden Lions 17h00 Durban
Worcester Warriors v Saracens 18h35 Sixways
Newcastle Falcons v London Irish 18h35 Kingston Park
Sale Sharks v Gloucester 19h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Leinster v Edinburgh 19h35 RDS Arena
Glasgow Warriors v Treviso 19h35 Scotstoun Stadium
Scarlets v Connacht 19h35 Parc y Scarlets
Sat, 30 September 2017
Griquas v Free State Cheetahs 12h00 Kimberley
Leicester Tigers v Exeter Chiefs 13h00 Welford Road
Munster v Cardiff Blues 13h30 Thomond Park
Cheetahs v Ospreys 14h00 Bloemfontein
Northampton Saints v Harlequins 14h00 Franklin's Gardens
Wasps v Bath 14h00 Ricoh Arena
Zebre v Ulster 14h35 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
South Africa v Australia 15h05 Bloemfontein
Dragons v Kings 18h35 Rodney Parade
Sun, 01 October 2017
Argentina v New Zealand 22h30 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
Blue Bulls v Western Province 12h30 Loftus Versfeld
CURRIE CUP
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Team P W D L Pts
Sharks 10 9 0 1 43
Free State Cheetahs 9 6 0 3 30
Western Province 9 5 0 4 27
Golden Lions 9 4 0 5 25
Pumas 10 4 0 6 24
Blue Bulls 9 3 0 6 20
Griquas 10 2 0 8 16