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Round 13 - Sharks v Stormers



6th placed Sharks take on the 9th placed Stormers at home.

Stormers are coming off a huge win against the then unbeaten Crusaders, the Sharks however are coming off a disappointing performance against the Bulls which saw them lose there key playmaker for possibly the rest of the season...

Broken Brown out for the season?

Monday May 01 2006

'We're a bit like the walking wounded'
The Sharks are likely to play the remainder of their Super 14 fixtures - against the Stormers and Force - without the services of the main catalyst of their successful season, former All Black fly-half Tony Brown.

It has emerged at the weekend that Brown had apparently suffered fractures in both his hands late in the first half of the team's 34-27 loss to the Bulls in Pretoria.

While the full extent of the damage is still to be confirmed, the initial prognoses suggested fractures sustained during a defensive effort.

"Tony's a tough player, and after receiving attention, he asked if he could go back onto the field in the second half," Sharks coach Dick Muir said. "I asked him how he intended catching the ball with two broken hands! That's the character of the man.

"We have a versatile side and I feel prepared for the eventuality of injuries, but it would be a great loss if he's out," admitted Muir.

Muir praised fullback Percy Montgomery who shifted to fly-half, with Brent Russell coming in at fullback, both players playing significant roles in the second half comeback - with the Sharks turning a 27-3 half-time deficit into the 34-27 full-time score, a second-half scoreline of 24-7..

"Percy [Montgomery] did some wonderful things at fly-half, doing exactly what was asked of him; he was solid in defence as well."

Brown is not the only injury concern for the Sharks.

Springbok and Sharks captain John Smit took a knock to the shoulder.

"We're a bit like the walking wounded," he described his team after the huge battle with the Bulls.

"That's the nature of the competition and we do have the depth though. Our policy has been to grow depth and give opportunities, so the injuries may afford us this opportunity."

Another of the walking wounded was prop BJ Botha. He was sporting a black eye and nasty cut below it.

Muir suggested that the injury was the result of a punch, but the citing officer has decided not to take the matter further.

"BJ took a nasty cut from a punch in a scrum," confirmed Muir. "Even if it is the nature of derby matches to be physical, punching is not on."

Muir also gave credit to the Bulls for their win.

"Hats off to them, they had possession and did well with it. But all credit to our guys - how they came back in the second half. We played the first 35 minutes without the ball; whether it was due to nervous pressure or Bulls' pressure.

"But you have to bounce back. In the first half we went backwards, but in the second we turned it around. What for me was so disappointing was how the Bulls out-muscled us in that first half.

"I thought there was some composure shown, but we wanted to carry the ball and weren't able to; their defence was outstanding and they tackled us backwards.

"What is exciting about this team is that we can score a few tries in 15, 20 minutes. The guys showed lots of character. In the middle of the second half, that try of theirs took the wind out of our sails a bit, but I was happy with the way we came back."

Asked 'where to from now', he said that the Sharks would "play as we have approached all games - we have a process."

The next match is against the Stormers on Saturday. Having beaten the Crusaders on Saturday, they will have their tales up, and with plenty to prove to what has been vocal criticism of their form, another high intensity derby awaits the Sharks.

"The Stormers have a lot to show still," said Muir, "and we are expecting a physical encounter. We will be cautious in our approach."

Every season I always look forward to beating one team... Western Province / Stormers. There's nothing like beating Mountain Goats into submission. ;)

As for Tony Brown, we do have some back-up people. Ruan Pienaar, Percy Montgomery, Brent Russell; and :blink: ... "The Butcher" Butch James is rumoured to be on the bench for this weekend's game. :D

I'll make my prediction later on in the week.
Well, besides the fact that winning vs WP is very important for all SA teams, Sharks still stand a chance for a place in the semis! It`s no doubt that Sharks are the best SA team in the away games this season! They can still make it !
Is there any chance of a 15 on 15 punch up in this game? damn professionalism...

Sharks will take this one.
Mountain Goats XV to play the Sharks

15. Joe Pietersen, 14. Rayno Benjamin, 13. Marius Joubert, 12. De Wet Barry ©, 11. Jean De Villiers, 10. Peter Grant, 9. Neil De Kock, 8. Joe van Niekerk, 7. Schalk Burger, 6. Luke Watson, 5. Andries Bekker, 4. Ross Skeate, 3. Eddie Andrews, 2. Schalk Brits, 1. JD Moller

16. Hanyani Shimange, 17. Neil Fullard, 18. Gerrie Britz, 19. Adri Badenhorst, 20. Bolla Conradie, 21. Naas Olivier, 22. Chumani Booi

Sharks XV to play the Shark Bait

15. Brent Russell, 14. Odwa Ndungane, 13. Andries Strauss, 12. Brad Barritt, 11. Adi Jacobs, 10. Percy Montgomery, 9. Ruan Pienaar, 8. AJ Venter, 7. Jacques Botes, 6. Warren Britz, 5. Johan Muller, 4. Johan Ackermann, 3. BJ Botha, 2. John Smit (captain), 1. Deon Carstens.

Replacements: 16. Bismarck du Plessis, 17. Heincke van der Merwe, 18. Albert van den Berg, 19. Keegan Daniels, 20. Scott Mathie, 21. Waylon Murray, 22. JP Pietersen.
Man i think this will be a hard game to choose from as the stormers are coming off that win against the crusaders and will still be on a high after that so it should be very close too close to call
Ok, time to make my prediction. The Sharks will be battered and bruised by the physical encounter with the Bulls, but also physically hardened by the match. They will come into the game looking to destory the Stormers pack, and hopefully Percy will do the job at fly-half and deliver quick ball to the rest of the backs. Sharks to win by 6 points.

PS. Natal is getting Kees Lensing!!
Sharks have pulled a fast one and BUTCH JAMES is at No. 10!!!! :blink: :eek: :D
HALF TYD!! Briljant Haaie!! 17 - 3. Show those Goats no mercy!! The score line does not show how dominant the Sharks were. Barritt is playing his heart out. :D
:bravo: :cheers: :bana:

PS. Don't worry about me, I'm just talking to myself over here. :unsure:

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