Cheetahs coach Naka Drotské feels his team lacks confidence, which in turns leads to 'schoolboy errors'.
The Cheetahs slumped to their seventh defeat in nine matches in going down 8-19 to the Sharks in dour arm-wrestle in Durban at the weekend.
Drotské, who saw his side drop to the bottom of the standings, found some positives from the match - especially he first half when they beat the Sharks at their own game.
"I thought we played reasonably well," Drotské told a media briefing.
"Our defence was really good, but once again on attack we couldn't keep the ball for more than three or four phases and conceded turnovers too easily.
"For some reason, maybe it's a lack of confidence, we played too laterally.
"That put a lot of pressure on our defence, which I thought was outstanding."
He said the lack of confidence is beginning to affect some of the "world class" individuals in his team.
"Willie [le Roux] is a world class player, but at the moment he lacks confidence and nothing is going his way."
He admitted they travelled to Durban with the intention of taking on the Sharks at their own game - playing for territory and kicking more than they have this season.
"We were patient and in the first half it worked very well," Drotské said.
“In the scrum we were under pressure, but out line-outs in the first half went well.
"However, after the break some individuals got the line-out calls wrong - which is unacceptable.
"We sometimes make schoolboy errors - the most basic aspects that are not executed correctly."