Super Rugby

Mapimpi pass to Bosch 'something special', says Sharks boss Everitt

Cape Town - The high-flying Sharks are displaying a unity and synergy that has contributed to an impressive start to their 2020 Super Rugby season. 

The Durbanites have won three out of their four fixtures so far this season and, more impressively, have won two out of three on their Australasian tour that comes to an end with Saturday's clash against the Reds in Brisbane. 

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Wins away to the Highlanders and Rebels have been characterised by some scintillating tries and this Sharks outfit is looking a different team to the one that crashed and kicked its way to results under former coach Robert du Preez last year. 

And while the nature of those tries, many of them sparked out of counter attacks, has been pleasing to coach Sean Everitt, the unity of the side has been even more so. 

There was a moment in this past weekend's 36-24 win over the Rebels in Melbourne where star Springbok wing Makazole Mapimpi broke away and ran the length of the field to cross the line for what would have been his hat-trick try. 

Instead, Mapimpi off-loaded the ball to flyhalf Curwin Bosch to score in his 50th Super Rugby cap and in his return match after having left the tour to travel to South Africa to mourn the death of his grandmother. 

According to Everitt, the spirit within the side is growing all the time and that moment between Mapimpi and Bosch was indicative of that. 

"It's very important because we know that synergy makes the team and they've gotten on really well on tour," Everitt said when asked about the unity with the group.

"That's what I wanted on this tour ... the guys to build a lot of team spirit, get closer and get to know each other better.

"The guys are playing for each other. You can see that from week to week and I think the consistency in their performances shows that.

"For Mapimpi to give up his hat-trick and give Curwin Bosch a try in his 50th cap is something special."

These are still early days, but it is looking increasingly likely that the battle to top the South African conference will be contested between the Sharks and the undefeated Stormers. 

The Capetonians, however, have played three of their four matches this season at Newlands and Everitt knows the importance of returning from their tour next week with another victory. 

"The guys are really motivated to make it three out of four. Not many teams come away from these Australasian tours winning three games," he said.

"We know that if we put a performance in and get the result, we should get a good crowd in Durban and that's our aim.

"We wanted to make people proud of the Sharks again and hopefully with a good performance we will be able to get people to the stadium next weekend when we play the Jaguares."

Kick-off on Saturday is at 10:15 (SA time). 

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