Sharks will ‘survive White’s departure’

2014-10-01 00:00

THE news of Jake White’s departure could not have come at a more delicate time in the Currie Cup, but Sharks players and coaches have maintained that they are 100% focused on Friday’s clash against the Lions.

There aren’t many with more experience than 35-year-old lock Marco Wentzel, who has been a stalwart for the Sharks in the tournament.

“It’s always tough if a coach leaves but it’s the same as when a player leaves. This is professional sport, players come and go and coaches come and go. It’s not the first time its going to happen nor the last. I’ve seen it a million times in my career,” Wentzel said yesterday.

Having played professionally for 16 years, Wentzel has been at the coalface of professional sport. He has also been part of 10 different professional teams and has worked with many coaches.

“I can honestly say I was not that involved with him [White] in Super 15 but he’s got a great CV, he’s done everything and I would be very surprised if he didn’t bring anything positive to the table — he’s a very experienced coach,” Wentzel said.

“No one is bigger than the Sharks brand, no player, no coach. The Sharks brand will go forward,” he added.

Sharks veteran flank Jacques Botes said the news had come out of the blue but the coaches and players have taken what they could from the year White was there.

“It came as a surprise for all of us. I think Jake, with the kind of experience he has and calibre of coach that he is, he’s definitely taught all of us here in the system a lot of things. He had some great ideas and I think he just believed that his season here was over,” Botes said.

“Having said that, I think the union will be for the better because of some of the structures he has put in place,” Botes said




“I think everyone learned a lot from Jake, he is very knowledgeable man, he’s been around the world coaching rugby at the highest level so it was great to have him involved. I was very fortunate — it’s great to be sitting in an office with someone with that amount of experience.”

•Despite reports of disputes between players, coaches and White, Macleod-Henderson said that he “got on very well with Jake”.

•Former Springbok assistant coach Gary Gold and former All Blacks and Lions coach John Mitchell yesterday emerged as possible replacements for White.

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