Sharks coach John Plumtree says his team are still searching for "complete performance" following their tough Super Rugby trip to Australia and New Zealand.
"We've only strung together two wins in a row once, so clearly we haven't established any sort of consistency in terms of results," the Sharks coach said on Tuesday.
The coastal side collected two wins and two losses from their tour, results that have helped them maintain some control of their log position ahead of the halfway stage of the competition.
They are currently sitting in eighth place after as many games, ahead of their clash with the table-topping Chiefs on Saturday.
Next week, the Sharks have a bye before returning to play six of their final eight games, all on home soil at Kings Park.
Plumtree conceded the team still had much to improve on to reach the play-offs.
"That's also reflecting on our on-field play in terms of our defence and our attack. You know we haven't been happy with all areas of our game consistently after every performance, that's the problem.
"It's either our set-piece that has let us down, or we haven't defended well. We're still looking for that complete performance, so that we can honestly go away and say 'look, we've had a good day here'."
The Durban franchise trained for the first time on Monday with some of their key players only partially involved.
Springbok hooker Bismarck du Plessis suffered various injuries in recent weeks, including a groin problem, along with quad and shoulder ailments, although the coach said he would be in contention for the match.
"Bismarck's got a number of minor issues with his body," said Plumtree.
"He's a guy that plays through injury a lot, but we've eventually had to take him out. He ran quite nicely today and we'll consider him on Thursday."
Another concern for the Sharks is Marcell Coetzee (shoulder), but number eight Ryan Kankowski (finger) may return to the Vodacom Cup side.
Plumtree acknowledged that the last four weeks had not been the easiest, but felt the team was still on course for a successful season.
"It wasn't easy by any means, but the 11 points we collected means we're still in the hunt, and one of only three sides who haven't had a bye yet," he said.