Sharks look to build on winning start

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Sharks v Lions

Pro14 Rainbow Cup SA

Kings Park Stadium, Durban
Saturday 8 May 2021
Kick-off 16:00 

The Sharks will look to build on their winning start to the Pro 14 Rainbow Cup when they welcome the Lions to Kings Park Stadium on the afternoon of Saturday 8 May 2021. Kick-off is at 16:00 .

The Sharks opened their Pro 14 campaign with a fighting win last weekend, claiming a bonus-point 33-30 away win over the Stormers in Cape Town, with Reniel Hugo scoring a hat-trick of tries as the Durban side came from 23-7 down to claim a remarkable victory.

Despite picking up the ‘W’, coach Sean Everitt wants to see a far more clinical performance from his side: “It is the sign of a good team when you don't play well but you still win, but we need to play better than that,” he explained.

“I think it says a lot about how well-conditioned the guys are that they kept the Stormers out for the last 20 minutes of the game — we had no possession and could only defend — especially those driving mauls close to our line.”

The Lions, meanwhile, succumbed 24-9 in their short trip to Pretoria to face the Bulls, with only three Fred Zeilinga penalties to show for their efforts over 80 minutes. They will again be underdogs for this match, but coach Ivan Van Rooyen believes his team will grow from the experience.

“I think the biggest Achilles heel was penalties and turnovers in our half. I think it’s not as much tactical as it was error-rate,” Van Rooyen explained. He added, “The guys really fronted up physically, and due to the errors and the way they played into our 22, they had something like eight maul stops … which is something we worked on hard. Physically-wise, proud of the guys.

Lukhanyo Am
Image copyright: Getty Images

“We played all the way out, made an error, and they just kicked us back into it. Proud of the guys who got their first caps, and proud of how the guys wanted to play.”

The teams last met competitively in a Currie Cup match in December 2020, with the Lions claiming a 27-12 home victory.

Sharks v Lions – Last five meetings

20 March 2021 – Lions 43-40 Sharks – Friendly
19 December 2020 – Lions 27-12 Sharks – Currie Cup
9 October 2020 – Sharks 19-16 Lions – Super Rugby
18 August 2019 – Lions 28-30 Sharks – Currie Cup
25 May 2019 – Sharks 27-27 Lions – Super Rugby


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Published: 05/06/2021