Sharks set for ‘one heck of a game’ against Griquas

2012-09-04 00:00

THE Sharks are gearing up for a “massive challenge” against Griquas in the Currie Cup match in Kimberley on Saturday, assistant coach Hugh Reece-Edwards said yesterday.

The Sharks were relieved to beat Free State by two points at King’s Park on Saturday while Griquas gained a rare away win when they upset the Currie Cup champions, the Golden Lions, 42-32 at Ellis Park in their weekend game.

“Griquas enjoy hosting any team, with their field, the crowd and their style of play,” said Reece-Edwards.

Reece-Edwards said he had been impressed by the Griquas’ display at Ellis Park.

“They really climbed into the Lions and it’s like that for any side that goes to Kimberley. Griquas want to win at home. And with the promotion-relegation format of the competition, there is a lot of pressure, so they will want to make sure their home games are positive ones for them.”

But he said that the game was also important for the log-leading Sharks.

“We’ll being going all out to give ourselves an opportunity to finish off the first round of the competition with a win,” he added.

“If we are sitting on the top of the log at the half-way point it would be fantastic. We have a very young squad and they’ve worked hard to get us where we are.

“We’ve also had just two home games in the first round [and three away] so we can be really happy with what what we’ve done so far.

“But we have one heck of a game on Saturday.”

Reece-Edwards said that the most pleasing aspect of the weekend win over Free State — after they trailed by 16 points entering the final quarter — was that no one (except the Sharks supporters) really panicked.

“The players believed in what they were doing. If you look at the stats, we did all the playing but we also made all the mistakes and that’s what let them in.

“Their three tries were all from our turnovers and it’s something we have to work on and work on hard.

“But the guys knew that if we controlled the ball, we could get some reward. It took a while, but at least it came,” he added.

The Sharks coach said that the Sharks were placing themselves under pressure with the ball they were coughing up and also by starting slowly and having to come from behind in all three games they have won.

“It’s not really a good thing and something that’s worrying us. We want to be adventurous in the way we play and we want to allow the boys to bring out what they’ve got.”

Reece-Edwards said the Sharks were playing adventurous rugby.

“It’s a high-risk-high-reward style but we want to get better and better and cut back on the turnovers.”

The match against Griquas kicks off at 3.00 pm on Saturday and lock Steve Sykes (ribs) is the only injury concern after the Free State game.

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