DURBAN - The way in which the Currie Cup has shaped up this year means that wins are vital, but wins at home are non-negotiable. There are only six fixtures in the regular season in which the teams can fight it out to put themselves in contention for the final.
With those six games, there are only three home fixtures, and the Sharks managed to get that all-important home win when they downed the Bulls who struggled to get their game flowing. Coach Robert du Preez said after the bonus-point win that he was happy with the start, but also suggested that the Sharks needed to improve their conversion rate.
“I think it is a good start for us, at home. In such a short competition you have to win all your home games, you cannot slip up on any one of those,” Du Preez said. “We have to be accurate in every game, and because of that preparation is obviously key. We had a good week and I though we came through well because of our preparation.”
The Bulls’ woes can be put down to a few things, mostly the Sharks’ defensive effort - which Du Preez said he was happy with - but also the Bulls’ inability to take their chances when they were on.
That aspect of the game is something the Sharks are also working on, as even though they were better at converting than the Bulls, they know it has been a long-standing problem.
“Our conversion rate and our accuracy were not great today, so it is something we have to work on going to the Cheetahs next week,” Du Preez said. “We do create a lot of opportunities, which we need to convert. Our conversion rate is not great, but I am happy with where we are, the attitude and intent of the boys was very good.”
Jumping into the new week like. 💥— Jeremy Ward (@JeremyWard_) August 26, 2018
A pleasure being back on KP.
The Sharks next head to the Free State to play the Cheetahs, who have had a difficult start to things - losing to the Bulls first, and then to Western Province on Saturday. The Cheetahs also have a lot on their plate as they prepare to run in two competitions, with the Pro 14 just about to kick off.
“Hopefully it was entertaining for the small crowd that was out there, I thought there were some really good passages of play from both teams. I am very pleased with out defense, and that showed the attitude and intent of the boys,” an upbeat Du Preez said.