Beast backs Sharks depth

Tue, 11 Mar 2014 13:36
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After questions were raised about their bench Tendai Mtawarira insisted they have the necessary depth to challenge for Super Rugby honours. 
After questions were raised about their bench Sharks prop Tendai Mtawarira insisted they have the necessary depth to challenge for Super Rugby honours. 
The Durban franchise convincingly beat the Lions 37-23 in the end on Saturday to move top of the competition standings but it must be said that they struggled to assert any dominance in the second half with their replacements in play. 
Sharks boss Jake White shouldered some of the blame, saying he made changes too early and Mtawarira felt it was something which would improve. 
“We've got great depth and it's something you'll see more as the season progresses,” he said. 
“We have guys who are not even playing that can contribute a lot to the team like Keegan Daniel and Jacques Botes so I think we've got depth.” 
JP Pietersen also returned to duty on Tuesday after a spell in Japan and may well be drafted straight in with the Sharks backline facing a bit of a shake-up. 
Speedy outside centre Paul Jordaan has been sidelined for a month with a knee injury and veteran wing Odwa Ndungane has been granted compassionate leave after the sudden death of his father,  however Patrick Lambie is expected to be fit again after withdrawing at the last minute against the Lions due to illness. 
Springbok prop Mtawarira said the season had gone according to plan with the Sharks having won three out of three with two bonus points. 
“We've been working very hard every week and we've had the rewards so far,” he said. 
“A lot of the guys have come of age and we've now got that experience on our side. You can hear on the field that everybody is talking and it's really great to have that.” 
The 28-year-old said White had made a definite impact in his first year in charge. 
“Jake has a certain way he wants to play. I think he's a very clever man and knows exactly what he's doing. 
“For us it's been a good change and one we're really enjoying. We're playing a brand of rugby that everyone is liking.” 
He also felt the pre-tournament favourites had not yet hit peak level. 
“You can feel the confidence is growing. We're not even playing to our full potential yet, so every player has to keep on working hard to get there. 
“Jake is very good at getting that out of players, so I'm sure there'll be further improvements as the season continues.” 
The Sharks face 2011 champions, Australian side the Reds, in Durban this weekend. 
There are currently no matches being played
Fri, 04 December 2015
Cardiff Blues v Connacht 19h05 BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park
Ulster v Edinburgh 19h35 Kingspan Stadium
Gloucester v Sale Sharks 19h45 Kingsholm
Sat, 05 December 2015
Treviso v Scarlets 15h00 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Glasgow Warriors v Leinster 15h00 Scotstoun
Harlequins v London Irish 15h00 Twickenham Stoop
Worcester Warriors v Leicester Tigers 15h00 Sixways
Bath v Northampton Saints 15h15 Recreation Ground
Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 17h30 Ricoh Arena
Sun, 06 December 2015
Dragons v Munster 14h30 Rodney Parade
Newcastle Falcons v Saracens 15h00 Kingston Park
Zebre v Ospreys 15h00 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Waratahs 16 11 0 5 52
Brumbies 16 9 0 7 47
Rebels 16 7 0 9 36
Reds 16 4 0 12 22
Force 16 3 0 13 19
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Hurricanes 16 14 0 2 66
Highlanders 16 11 0 5 53
Chiefs 16 10 0 6 48
Crusaders 16 9 0 7 46
Blues 16 3 0 13 20
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 16 10 1 5 45
Lions 16 9 1 6 42
Bulls 16 7 0 9 38
Sharks 16 7 0 9 34
Cheetahs 16 5 0 11 26