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Round 7. Sharks v Hurricanes



The mighty ‘never seem to leave home’ Sharks take on the ‘what the?’ Hurricanes at surprisingly ‘home’.
Last week the Sharks beat the Cheetahs and the Hurricanes went down in a close on to the Force.
The Canes will be without power house Ma'a Nonu for this tour due to injury and are definitely missing their 4 All Blacks. Although players have stepped up, missing a crew like Jerry Collins and Rodney So'oialo is going to cause issues (very hard shoes to fill).

The Sharks (like the Blues) are true class at the moment and should take this one without raising a sweet BUT with the Canes â€" you never can tell.
the canes seem to be struggling now without their big guns, who perform week in week out
A couple of the Sharks young guns are really starting to come to the fore at the moment, and as Dumbo rightly points out, together with the Blues, the Sharks have been the class of the field in 2007.

Their confidence at home is huge at the moment, and the Canes will still be a bit ring-rusty after the long trek to the African coast. Also, the humidity factor in Durbs in March should not be underestimated- I reckon that the Sharks should come out on top, but not by much more than 5 points.
The Canes has really been disappointing. People should quit saying that they're losing because they're without their ABs....I say Bullshit. Look at the Highlanders, they've got no big game breakers yet they are 5th on the table and playing well.

:ranting: :ranting:

The Canes skill level against the Stormers and the Force were pathetic to say the least. Balls not goind to hands, fumbles, knock-ons, forward passes, missed tackles, etc... I would expect this from a School 2nd XV but not from a group of 'Professional' players playing top level competition.

[Rant Over]


The Sharks should win this easily as they have been playing tremendously well with a bunch of upcoming talents. Watchout for Barritt at 12. He is going places this guy.

Sharks by 10.
Head to Head:
15 Francois Steyn,
14 Odwa Ndungane,
13 Waylon Murray,
12 Brad Barritt,
11 JP Pietersen,
10 Butch James,
9 Ruan Pienaar,
8 Jacques Botes,
7 AJ Venter ©,
6 Warren Britz,
5 Johann Muller,
4 Johan Ackermann,
3 BJ Botha,
2 Bismarck du Plessis,
1 Deon Carstens.
16 John Smit,
17 Tendai Mtariwara,
18 Albert van den Berg,
19 Keegan Daniel,
20 Bob Skinstad/Ryan Kankowski,
21 Rory Kockott,
22 Adrian Jacobs.

15 Cory Jane,
14 Hosea Gear,
13 Conrad Smith,
12 Tana Umaga ©,
11 David Smith,
10 Blair Stewart,
9 Alby Mathewson,
8 Thomas Waldrom,
7 Serge Lilo,
6 Luke Andrews,
5 Bernie Upton,
4 Paul ***o,
3 Anthony Perenise,
2 Tone Kopelani,
1 Neemia Tialata.
16 Mahonri Schwalger,
17 John Schwalger,
18 Brad Mika,
19 Hayden Hopgood,
20 Chris Smylie,
21 Jimmy Goppert,
22 Tamati Ellison.

Looking forward to this one. I'm going against the grain and am backing the Hurricanes (not just due to there week in week out winning policey) but mainly due to they would have had a major kick in the arse by going down last week to the Force and will rise for this game no end. They know that the Sharks are right up there on the ladder and as I said will be pulling finger to knock them off
Strangely enough I'm going for the hurricanes myself. I have to say they have looked incredibly lazy out there and it seems like they have a very poor defensive pattern and they always seem to be scrambling after their line is broken over and over. Both their flyhalves have been pretty underwhelming and I've got to say that many of the problems with the 'canes feel like coaching problems i.e. lack of organisation, poor basic skills, stupid game plans and worst of all some incredibly shitty selections, particularly in key positions. I mean Nili Latu, come on, even I could have told Cooper this guy was crap and lo and behold he almost never features in the team anymore. The only positions where they made good selections were in positions where they already had a wealth of talent, i.e. wing and fullback. Hmm I've just about managed to talk myself out of backing them, but some misguided sense of loyalty means I just have to back them, for no particular reason. They are just that kind of team :p
Agree with ozzy, Latu was a stupid selection - the guy is out of place in this leauge.
Also it's obvious that there has been no control over the backline in defence with more often than not the forward pack having to tidy up for the backs (last week was a shocker though, what the f&*k was ***o doing on the wing and where the f&*k was the full back, I'll tell you... he was hanging around the fringe for f&*ks sake - not happy).
Tana should add the control required for the backline and young Blair Stewart in 10 will change the dynamic of the Canes due to having a 10 thats prepared to run at the line (fingers crossed he's improved on his kicking game).
Plus more importantly the Canes will be trying to beat the big boys.
So should the Blues... there would have been a good home for him in the Waikato
i disagree with you juggenaut..f*** the highlanders,theyve always had that grind game without super duper stars..that has always been otago..hurricanes are the worst with out there allblacks..

look at last season..only one looseforward trio taught everyone else a thing or two and that was the combo of collins,rodney and masoe...THEY COMPLETELY DOMINATE THE FRINGES OF THE RUCK..DEFENCE AND OFFENCE!..they are mechanical animals on solar power and they feed off smacking people around..

now you look at this team and one place that they surely lose on is that very ruck area which isnt patrolled aswell.and if it isnt patrolled then ya get rolled!..golden rule around the rucks..protect it!..when that trio comes back as strong as they are..we will sill some stability and a chance for thier backs to do their jobs..the hurrican way

Another win for the Sharks and their perfect start to the season continues.

The Sharks regained first place on the Super 14 standings when they retained their unbeaten record with an emphatic 27-14 win over the Hurricanes in Durban on Saturday.

The Sharks collected a bonus point for the first time this season when they scored four tries to one.

Have you heard of Natal fever? It's a disease that settles on Durban in the hot and humid months of February and March. The symptoms are extreme lethargy and sluggishness. It was clearly present at ABSA Stadium on this third Saturday in March. It was a largely sluggish match with an inevitable result.

That the Hurricanes were within a converted try of a bonus point at the end seemed silly, for they were well and truly outplayed, especially in the second half when the Sharks simply settled down on them like a sumo wrestler flopping onto a bantamweight. They had little possession and, when they did get some, seemed to believe that charging was better than the skilled passing that is such a great feature of their game.

The Sharks were better at the breakdown, better at tackling, better with the ball in hand and better in the scrums. They were much stronger than the Hurricanes and it was the forwards who exercised the grip on the game. The scrums must cause headaches. BJ Botha had the better of Neemia Tialata but was penalised twice in the first half for being better!

In fact penalties must have been a headache as the Sharks surpassed the 18 penalties conceded by the Bulls last week to concede 20 penalties this week and they were the side dominating the game. There were 32 penalties in the match all told.

For the first time in this year's Super 14 the unbeaten Sharks managed a bonus point. It was not a pretty bonus point but one that delighted their fans even though three of the four tries were mastodon affairs as they shoved their way over from attacking line-outs where they have a simple formula - throw to AJ Venter who gives to somebody else - Warren Britz mostly today - get together and then shove ahead. It has a deadly precision about it.

Their first try was a different matter. Odwa Ndungane made the running towards the Hurricanes' posts and AJ Venter took the ball close to their line. Back it came and the Sharks went right to JP Pietersen who skipped between two defenders in that sinuous way of his for a try fairly close in. Ruan Pienaar who kicked that miracle conversion against the Crusaders hit the upright and later missed another before being replaced by Butch James who kicked every kick.

The Sharks led 5-0 after five minutes and then Tana Umaga was sent to the sin bin, accused of deliberately playing a man without the ball. In his absence sitting on the exercise bike, the only points scored were by the Hurricanes when Blair Stewart goaled an easy one after Bismarck du Plessis had been penalised at a tackle/ruck.

When Umaga came back Stewart had a break from a line-out and then goaled another penalty to give the Hurricanes the lead. At this stage they were competitive, giving no clue to their second half close-down.

The Sharks got the lead back when they made a maul from a five-metre line-out and Johan Ackermann was the man who enjoyed scoring the try which caused much glee amongst the forwards, as it did for the other two they scored in the second half.

Just before the break, Stewart goaled a third penalty to make the score 10-9. That ended his participation as Jimmy Gopperth replaced him - and missed his first kick at goal, an annoying penalty for "truck-'n-trailer".

The Sharks had a kickable penalty but James tapped and Britz was close. They did their penalty-line-out-maul routine and this time Jacques Botes scored. James converted. 17-9.

It seemed tat this stage that the Sharks knew they were going to win and that the Hurricanes accepted it, playing against the inevitable for the next 35 minutes.

Off a long pass by François Steyn, Pietersen had a long run and the Sharks should have scored as the ball went to Du Plessis and Albert van den Berg.

The Hurricanes were penalised for going up in a scrum and the Sharks did their routine. The Hurricanes were penalised for collapsing and the Sharks did their routine again and this time Britz scored - the bonus-point try. James converted to make the score 24-9 after 50 minutes.

The only other points the Sharks got were from a penalty goal to take them to 27-9 with 21 minutes to go.

On a rare sortie into the Sharks' half - courtesy of penalties, of course - the Hurricanes scored a try. At a post--penalty line-out replacement hooker Mahonri Schwalger popped the ball in to Anthony Perenise at the front of the line-out. The prop popped it back to the hooker while the Sharks' replacement hooker John Smit slumbered. Schwalger ran and popped the ball back to Perenise who scored. 27-14 with 15 minutes to go.

Johan Muller was injured when his head hit Bradley Mika's hip and he was taken off on a stretcher. The word afterwards was that he had damaged soft tissue at the back of his neck and that he was taken to hospital for tests as a precaution.

Replacement prop, the Zimbabwean Beast Mtawarira was sent to the sin bin for a high tackle that ended his match. Although Du Plessis was ready to come back and Smit was originally and often a prop, the Sharks opted not to have anybody suitably trained available and the last four scrums of the match were uncontested.

The match fizzled out.

Man of the Match: The Sharks had good performances from centre Waylon Murray and flyhalf Butch James but really this victory belonged to the forwards - not just busy Jacques Botes and the other loose forwards but above all to the muscle men whose representative is our Man of the Match, BJ Botha.

The scores:

For the Sharks:
Tries: Pietersen, Ackermann, Botes, Britz
Cons: James 2
Pen: James

For the Hurricanes:
Try: Perenise
Pens: Stewart 3

Yellow cards: Tana Umaga (Hurricanes, 15 - foul play, playing man without the ball), Beast Mtawarira (Sharks, 74 - foul play, high tackle) [/b]

sharks seem to be playing well this year and defintely look like a chance for a semi spot
It was definately set up by the Sharks fatties up front, with the whole front row superb, but for me the standout in the pack was Deon Carstens at loosehead, with BJ Botha and AJ Venter close behind. And them youngsters in the backline- Murray, Pietersen, Barritt and especially 19-year-old Frans Steyn, playing fullback and kicking the 1st time in about the 35th minute- absolutely magnificent. We`re not used to a fullback running everything over here, and it`s certainly a huge improvement on the perennial Bulls-style kick and charge approach from the back.

I also think that the yellow card to Umanga was a joke in terms of refereeing, what exactly did Tana do wrong? Go for the ball in the air?

The Sharks once again scored 75% of their tries from 1st-phase possession, certainly putting paid to the notion that you can only score from phase-play and broken play. I hope that Jake White took note.
goodstuff to the sharks!..cant wait to see them clash with the blues! should be an even event!..

and meh reckons they have done enough to confirm their play off birth..couple more victories and depending on form in the latter stages of the season..we might see them in a home grand final....who knows...goodstuff to them though

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