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Sithole: Sharks must get basics right in Currie Cup

S'bura Sithole in action for the Sharks in the Currie Cup

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Article Published: Tuesday 2 September 2014|

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Sharks centre S'bura Sithole believes that the Durban based Currie Cup team have to improve on their basics if they are to get back on track and defend their Currie Cup title.

The Sharks suffered their first loss of the 2014 Currie Cup last Saturday when they were beaten 32-22 by the Pumas in Nelspruit.

The Sharks Currie Cup loss has seen them drop behind the Mpumalanga side from second to fourth on the Premier Division table after four rounds of the competition.

"I think it's just our basics and fundamentals that are letting us down," said Sithole.

"We have a young group and the guys are learning every week."

"I think the individuals know what they've done wrong. The coaches have been working with them, so everyone's on par in terms of what needs to be done."

Apart from the errors, the Sharks' promised expansive game has yet to materialise.

After they were criticised for being too kick-orientated during Super Rugby, the Durban side has made no secret of its desire to play with more ball in hand.

However, that has not yet happened and Sithole defended the way they were playing.

"It's not like there's anything wrong with our attack. It's just that this past weekend the guys didn't execute the way we would have liked to," he said.

"So I think the focus will basically be the same."

But he admitted that they do need to cross the whitewash more often. The Sharks have scored a paltry nine tries in their four games, the second-worst record behind the struggling Blue Bulls [eight], and they have only one four-try bonus point from the 34-17 win over the Pumas in mid-August.

"The opportunities are there and those we've missed have been from ... small things.

"Hopefully, as the season goes on, ... we can score more tries," Sithole said.

"It [scoring four tries] is very important because that bonus point might get you into the semis and get you home advantage in a semi-final.

"But the guys are trying. We're trying to win first before anything else. The other stuff will come."

The Sharks face Griquas at Kings Park on Saturday when they will be aiming to bounce back from the disappointing showing at the Mbombela Stadium.

"Our focus this week is to fix the things we didn't do right last week," Sithole added.

"Things like our defence and maybe a little bit of our set-piece. The focus is just on ourselves and getting better as a group."

The Sharks were dealt a blow on Monday when flanker Francois Kleinhans was ruled out for eight weeks with a broken hand and lock JC Astle was sidelined for three weeks with a hamstring strain.

Another loose forward, Etienne Oosthuizen, is a big doubt with an ankle problem.

 
 
 
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Currie Cup Table

Currie Cup table (Premier Division)              Currie Cup Table
 
Team
P
W
L
D
PF
PA
PD
Bp
Ttl
1. W.Province 10 8 2 0 335 206 129 7 39
2. Lions 10 7 3 0 362 206 156 8 36
3 10 7 2 1 287 222 65 3 33
4. 10 6 4 0 271 235 27 4 28
5. 10 3 6 1 249 394 -45 7 21
6.
Pumas
10 4 6 0 237 269 -32 4 20
7. 10 3 7 0 220 332 -112 3 11
8. EP Kings 10 1 9 0 206 403 -197 1 6

(Updated each Monday to check with officials)