Du Preez laments no effort
Despite averting the travails of a long trip to face the Crusaders next weekend‚ Sharks coach Robert du Preez was less than pleased with his side’s 27-10 Super Rugby defeat to the Lions.
“I’m not happy with the way we played. There was just no effort‚” growled coach Du Preez after his side rarely fired a shot in anger against the Lions.
“I don’t mind losing if you’ve given your best. One would be happy with that… our fans too. If you just come out here and get beaten up and make so many errors that is not good enough for the Sharks.
“There is no doubt that this is a good rugby team with talented players.
"But you’ve got to look at your mental state of mind and how switched on the players are. In the back of the players’ mind maybe there was the factor of travelling to New Zealand.
"That could have played a role but not to the extent it happened in this match.”
Du Preez of course referred to the Sharks’ pre kick-off knowledge that victory over the Lions would set them on course for a meeting against the Crusaders in Christchurch.
As it turned out they will face a 50-minute flight to Johannesburg and a shot at redemption following two defeats to the Lions this season.
“There is light at the end of the tunnel in that there is a second chance next Saturday‚” noted Du Preez.
“It is all to play for. Everything that happened before is gone now. (We’ve got) one go at it. We have that opportunity. It is in our hands.”
The Sharks will continue to be without Bok loosehead Tendai Mtawarira in the quarterfinal‚ but they may now restore Curwin Bosch to flyhalf after he started off the bench against the Lions. It raised a few eyebrows.
“We wanted to give Garth (April) another opportunity there because he didn’t do badly against the Bulls. That was really the reason. We wanted that continuity at 10.”