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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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Wed, 31 August 2016
Griquas v EP Kings 15h00 Kimberley
Fri, 02 September 2016
Boland v Pumas 13h00 Wellington
Blue Bulls v Golden Lions 17h00 Pretoria
Ospreys v Zebre 18h35 Liberty Stadium
Leinster v Treviso 18h35 RDS Arena
Ulster v Dragons 18h35 Kingspan Stadium
Gloucester v Leicester Tigers 18h45 Kingsholm
Newcastle Falcons v Sale Sharks 19h00 Kingston Park
Sat, 03 September 2016
Saracens v Worcester Warriors 13h00 Twickenham Stadium
Free State Cheetahs v EP Kings 13h00 Bloemfontein
Scarlets v Munster 14h00 Parc y Scarlets
Northampton Saints v Bath 14h30 Franklin's Gardens
Western Province v Sharks 15h10 Cape Town
Harlequins v Bristol 15h30 Twickenham Stadium
Connacht v Glasgow Warriors 16h15 Sportsground
Cardiff Blues v Edinburgh 18h35 BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park
Sun, 04 September 2016
Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 14h00 Ricoh Arena
CURRIE CUP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Sharks 4 4 0 0 19
Free State Cheetahs 3 3 0 0 14
Golden Lions 3 2 0 1 12
Blue Bulls 4 2 0 2 11
Griquas 3 2 0 1 9
Western Province 3 1 0 2 7
Boland 4 1 0 3 5
Pumas 3 0 0 3 3
EP Kings 3 0 0 3 1