Botes favours Sharks’ chances

2014-08-20 00:00

FLANK Jacques Botes says the Sharks have the perfect blend of experience to do well in this year’s Currie Cup.

According to MyPlayers website, the Sharks, Golden Lions and Western Province have emerged the only unbeaten teams in this year’s Currie Cup campaign after two rounds.

Despite losing several key players to Springbok duty, the defending champions have won both their opening games — against Griquas and the Pumas — with a squad made up of mostly young players.

“It’s definitely a young and exciting squad overall. There’s some great talent in the team,” Botes told MyPlayers. “We can also depend on experienced guys like Odwa Ndungane, Tonderai Chavhanga, Matt Stevens and Marco Wentzel, who all boast international experience.

“This year’s Currie Cup will provide a challenging season, but if we stick to our guns, we will do well. We have a lot of pace, so we’ll be looking to do well on attack.”

He added new captain Tera Mtembu has done a good job in his new role.

“Tera has made an excellent step up this season. He took his opportunities during Super Rugby, so the call to make him captain is an exciting one. He’s doing well … and has a few experienced players to help him with the leadership responsibilities.”

He believes director of rugby Jake White, who still works with the team during the domestic season, has had a great influence.

“Since the start of Super Rugby, Jake has brought attention to detail to the Sharks game plan. We have also done more when it comes to match analysis. Jake’s a very astute coach,” explained Botes.

“Under the mentorship of Jake and [consultant] Brendan Venter, head coach Brad Macleod-Henderson has learned a lot and is making a name for himself this year. It’s an exciting season for players and coaches.”

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