Picking up positives

2014-03-26 00:00

DESPITE going down to the Bulls at Loftus last week, the Sharks took some positives from the performance that saw them lose their first game of the Super Rugby season.

It will never be known how the Sharks — who were in the game right up till the end — will have done in the clash against the Bulls had they not lost their halfback pairing of Pat Lambie and Cobus Reinach in the first seven minutes of play.

And, Sharks coach Jake White said after the game that they would not use the loss of Lambie and Reinach as an excuse.

Prop Dale Chadwick acknowledged that they took some positives out of the game that saw them fail to open up a gap in the South African Conference and overall log.

“We were in the game until the last few minutes and we had two serious injuries in the first half that could have rattled a lot of teams,” Chadwick told reporters at the Sharks gym on Monday.

“The positives are we were still in the game right until the end,” the prop, who has started this year’s games on the bench, said.

Speaking about their upcoming challenge, the Waratahs, Chadwick rated their forward pack, and believed the Sydneysiders would be a tough proposition, come Saturday afternoon.

“They’ve got a big strong pack. They have heavy locks, heavy props, so scrumming wise, even in the mauls and breakdowns, we’re going to have a serious time against them this weekend,” he said.

With the scrumming laws changing so much over the years, he felt they had to adapt every week with different referees who tend to interpret them differently.

“We’re continually tyring to keep ahead of the pack by working on certain aspects. Our sessions from two weeks ago have changed to what we’re going to do tomorrow [Tuesday]. It’s different ever week,” the 24-year-old Durban born and bred prop said.

Having been on crutches at this time last year, Chadwick was enjoying being involved in the match 23 and coming off the bench to contribute to the Sharks’ season.

“This time last year I was on crutches, and a six week injury turned into 14 weeks on crutches, so it’s really nice to be in the 23 and get onto the bench. I’m really enjoying the moment and I’m privileged to put that jersey on every weekend.”

This coming weekend, Chadwick and the Sharks were looking to make things right against the Waratahs at King’s Park Stadium.

Try-scoring sensation Israel Folau will miss the game this weekend due to a bruised throat and also remains a doubt for their second match of their two-game South African tour against the Stormers at Newlands the following week.

Folau’s number 15 jersey will go to 23-year-old former Queensland Reds utility back Jono Lance.

Lance is one of 4 changes that ’Tahs coach Michael Cheika has made to the side that steamrolled the Melbourne Rebels in Sydney last week.

Saturday’s game at King’s Park kicks off at 5.05 pm.

TEAMS

Sharks: TBA

Waratahs: 15 Jono Lance, 14 Rob Horne, 13 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Peter Betham, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Dave Dennis (captain), 5 Kane Douglas, 4 Jacques Potgieter, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 1 Benn Robinson.

Replacements: TBA

WIN DOUBLE TICKETS!

We are giving away 20 double tickets for the Sharks vs Waratahs match, which kicks off at 5.05 pm this Saturday, March 29. To Win, simply SMS “Witness#SuperGees”, followed by your name and surname, to 32697. The competition closes tomorrow. Winners will be announced in The Witness on Friday. Staff of the Witness and their immediate families are not eligible to enter. The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. If you have won a prize in The Witness in the past 3 months, you are not eligible to enter. SMS is charged at R1,50.

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