Jake's passion drives the Sharks

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 12:33
Large bismarck du plessis media

The Sharks are sitting on the crest of the Super Rugby wave and the driving force behind their success is the Jake White-inspired passion.

The Sharks are sitting on the crest of the Super Rugby wave and the driving force behind their success is the Jake White-inspired passion.

Captain Bismarck du Plessis, speaking to this website ahead of the tricky Round 10 encounter with the Cheetahs in Durban on Saturday, pointed the World Cup-winning former Springbok coach's appetite for success as the key to their improved form this year.

Now the Director of Rugby at the Durban-based franchise, White has lived up to the reputation that saw him take South Africa to World Cup glory and the Brumbies to a Super Rugby Final.

"His record speaks for itself and he has the full backing of the team," Du Plessis said, when asked about White's influence since he moved to Durban from Canberra in the off-season.

"He is very passionate about the game and he is somebody that loves doing analysis.

"Jake always looks at aspects on which we should work and that becomes out focus."

However, White's presence alone is not going to gift the Sharks the win they require to cement their place at the summit of the tournament standings.

The Cheetahs, despite having a nightmare season and hovering just one place above last on the table, have at times been a bogey team for the Sharks.

"They are always a dangerous team, especially when facing the Sharks in Durban," Du Plessis told this website.

And he has a point.

Of their six Super Rugby meetings at Kings Park the Cheetahs have won three, including a 12-6 win last year.

"They have tripped us up in the past, but this weekend we must focus on our own game," the Sharks skipper said, adding that their goal remains to win all their home games to ensure they stay in first place give themselves that vital home ground advantage in the play-offs.

Du Plessis, who has had some interesting debates with referees this season, sees it as part of his job to ensure his teammates always have a clear understanding of what the match officials require.

There has been suggestions that perhaps Du Plessis could tone down some of his exchanges, but he is only concerned with the 'terms' of his job description.

"The captain has to communicate with the referees, it is his job to understand what they are unhappy with," he said.

By Jan de Koning

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Fri, 23 March 2018
Connacht v Edinburgh 22h00 Sportsground
Munster v Scarlets 22h00 Thomond Park
Dragons v Cheetahs 22h00 Rodney Parade
Ospreys v Leinster 22h00 Liberty Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Ulster 22h00 Cardiff Arms Park
Glasgow Warriors v Zebre 22h00 Scotstoun
Kings v Treviso 22h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Crusaders v Bulls 06h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Sharks 08h45 Melbourne
Bath v Exeter Chiefs 19h45 Recreation Ground
Sat, 24 March 2018
Sunwolves v Chiefs 04h15 Tokyo
Hurricanes v Highlanders 06h35 Wellington
Saracens v Harlequins 15h00 London
London Irish v Gloucester 15h00 Madejski Stadium
Sale Sharks v Worcester Warriors 15h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Stormers v Reds 15h15 Newlands
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 17h30 Kingston Park
Jaguares v Lions 19h40 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
Sun, 25 March 2018
Leicester Tigers v Wasps 15h00 Welford Road
Sun, 18 March 2018
Waratahs v Rebels 51 | 27
Sat, 17 March 2018
Jaguares v Reds 7 | 18
Wales v France 14 | 13
Lions v Sunwolves 40 | 38
England v Ireland 15 | 24
Stormers v Blues 37 | 20
Italy v Scotland 27 | 29
Brumbies v Sharks 24 | 17
Highlanders v Crusaders 25 | 17
Fri, 16 March 2018
Cardiff Blues v Treviso 31 | 25
Edinburgh v Munster 12 | 6
Chiefs v Bulls 41 | 28
Sun, 11 March 2018
Wales v Italy 38 | 14
Sat, 10 March 2018
Jaguares v Waratahs 38 | 28
France v England 22 | 16
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Rebels 4 3 0 1 15
Waratahs 4 2 1 1 10
Reds 3 2 0 1 8
Brumbies 4 2 0 2 8
Sunwolves 4 0 0 4 2
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Highlanders 3 3 0 0 13
Hurricanes 3 2 0 1 10
Crusaders 4 2 0 2 10
Chiefs 3 2 0 1 8
Blues 4 1 0 3 6
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 5 4 0 1 19
Stormers 5 2 0 3 9
Sharks 4 1 1 4 9
Bulls 4 1 0 3 5
Jaguares 4 1 0 3 4