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Plumtree hopes to give Lambie more time at 10

Pat Lambie will focus on the flyhalf role in 2013

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Article Published: Tuesday 5 February 2013|

Sharks coach John Plumtree has confirmed that Pat Lambie will play at flyhalf in 2013 instead of fullback where he played much of last year.

During the 2012 Super Rugby season the Sharks had Fred Michalak who played well at flyhalf so in order to accommodate the two players Plumtree played a number of games at fullback.

However now that Michalak has returned to France Lambie's focus will be  on playing at flyhalf alongside centre Frans Steyn.

"It was good to see him play those Test matches at flyhalf, but I think it's also important to understand that the Boks play a different style of rugby to us. "

"I think the Boks play more off the scrumhalf and we generally play more off 10 so he'll have more responsibility with The Sharks. "But he started playing really well at flyhalf in last year's Super Rugby competition before he got injured, and then obviously Fred came into that role. "

"I think people forget that Pat picked up quite a few injuries last year, so he didn't have a great season in Super Rugby from an injury perspective. "

"But hopefully the injuries will stay away this season and he'll be able to get a good run of games in that position. "

Plumtree is happy with the Sharks depth at centre, with Steyn joining the team last year to add to their stocks, sharing duties with Meyer Bosman, Paul Jordaan and Tim Whitehead.

"It's taken a bit of time to get our midfield to where it is, losing Frans but now with him coming back, " says Plumtree.

"To have a big, physical player in the midfield is going to be great, he still has a little work to do on his fitness because he was out for three or four months with an ankle injury, but he's getting there. "We have some good options in the midfield."

The Sharks have two Super Rugby warm ups and Plumtree hopes to give as many players as possible some game time.

"We'll look at giving most guys an opportunity in those two warm-up games, that's important, " Plumtree said on the Sharks site.

Plumtree also confirmed that Springbok Ryan Kankowski will return to the Sharks next week after he spent the second half of last year playing in Japan.

"It's the first hit-out really and it's about getting that first contact in."

"The players have a fairly good base that they've been working from, the guys have been keeping in good condition, and although there are some players who have some work to do, the boys have been working really hard. "

The Sharks first Super Rugby warm up match is against the Leopards Woodburn Stadium in Pietermaritzburg on Friday and the second is against the Pumas in Durban a week later.

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