Sharks must up their game against Griquas

The Sharks prepare for their home game against Griquas on Friday.

Week three of the Currie Cup brings Griquas to Durban as they look to turn their good form into winning form against the Cell C Sharks this Friday night (4 August) at Growthpoint Kings Park, at 7pm.
Griquas have been competitive in their two high scoring matches to date, but they’re on the hunt for an elusive victory. The Cell C Sharks stand between a third consecutive loss and a first win, and knowing Griquas, there is every fear that they will be striving to accomplish the latter option.
Many a team has tripped up against the men from Kimberley, a side that remains intact throughout the year, enjoying momentum and continuity in team selection from their first competitive match to their last. This makes them a perennial danger to teams like the Cell C Sharks. While they’re not quite our bogey side we have tripped up against them more than once in the Currie Cup and head coach, Robert du Preez, is well aware of just how dangerous a threat they pose.

“They’re a very good attacking side so we’re going to have to be really up for it. Something we’ve talked about among ourselves is that we cannot disrespect the opposition. It’s really important for us to do well against Griquas,” said head coach, Robert du Preez.

“Sides like the Pumas and Griquas are very competitive sides and if you let teams like Griquas into the game, you’re going to be in for a tough day at the office. We saw that in the first 40 minutes in our game against the Pumas, when we only scored three points; they’re tough sides to play against. There are no easy games.”

Ruan Botha captained the team last week and continues in his leadership role this weekend, explaining that the team will be looking to put last week’s first half behind them, but definitely look to continue where they left off in the second half.

“Our focus this week is on holding on to the ball and avoiding 50-50 stuff. We want to keep building phases and the wall will eventually break,” said Botha.

Of Griquas, he makes it clear that there is a lot of respect for them.

“From a forwards’ perspective, they’re probably one of the toughest packs we will face – and that’s no disrespect to the other teams. Griquas always like to come and show that they are capable of with a mentality of trying to dominate you physically, so we’re going to have to front up for the fight.”

With three games played in the matter of just over a week, Griquas this Friday, the Bulls next Wednesday and the Lions a few days later (on Saturday), the Cell C Sharks have their work cut out for them.

This busy period will be a thorough test for the team, but one in which they will accept the challenge.

The coach said he would be using a squad of around 25 players over the course of this very busy period in the competition.

“We don’t want to lose continuity, to play the Bulls with a completely different side to the Lions probably won’t work out for us,” he explained. “We will need to adapt our training though and with a tough week this week, we’ll have to tone it down next week when we play two games.”

Look out for the green armbands the players will be wearing in support of the Jes Foord Foundation during Women’s Month.

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