Adaptation is key for Sharks
Tue, 13 May 2014 12:28
We're the first to admit it
The Sharks defeat against the Brumbies, a Jake White moulded team, has made the Sharks boss realise they need to be more dynamic.
The Durban-based team have centred their game around a solid defence, a polished kicking display and a bruising forward pack.
However, they faced up against a team in the Brumbies that prizes those same aspects, coming unstuck through poor execution.
White's team now faces off against a Crusaders team that is looking back to its championship-winning best and the coach knows something has to change.
"We know we have to change our game, we're the first to admit it," White said
Although the Sharks started off so impressively, winning their first four games, White believes they are still growing under his tutelage.
"I've only been with this team for six months. There is a massive difference to where we are in our progression to where they [the Brumbies] are," he said
"To put it in perspective, they were finalists last year, this is the third year of their development and we've been together for six months, we've basically played together for 11 games."
Although the Sharks left some points in Canberra White is still proud of his teams' efforts over the 11 games.
"We've been together for 11 games as a group, there's a lot to be said for the fact that we're still top of the log," said White.
"We're still comfortably ahead in our conference, there's a lot to be said for where we are at this stage."
The Sharks square off against the Crusaders in Christchurch on Saturday with the most successful Super Rugby team looking in devastating form after thumping the Reds 57-29.
White will want to keep his team's momentum going through a tough tour after picking up four points against the Rebels and a point against the Brumbies.
The Crusaders clash against the Sharks should be an intriguing arm-wrestle as the South Africans look to wear down another strong pack with an attacking backline.
The Crusaders master fetcher, Richie McCaw, is also slowly getting back to his best form while their flyhalf, Colin Slade, has been immaculate.
White is clearly aware of the impact an in-form flyhalf can have.
"One of the things we had to do was back Pat [Lambie] at No.10, but that hasn't worked out with injury," White concluded
"We've had Tim Swiel and Fred Zeilinga and Frans Steyn playing there.
"We've played four No.10s already in 11 games and that doesn't help with the rhythm of your attack nor for cohesion in the backline at all.
"We just have to get through and kick on."
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