Uphill battle for youthful Sharks

Date published: August 17 2015

Sharks head coach Gary Gold has praised his young team's effort over the weekend, but feels the road to success is still long and hard for his charges.

A rather poor performance on Saturday saw them edge past the EP Kings as they won their first match of the Currie Cup campaign after a rather dismal performance against the Pumas in their opening round fixture in Nelspruit.

Although they managed to pull through for their first victory of the season, head coach Gold is more relieved than satisfied by his team's performance.

"It was not too satisfying from a performance point of view, but at least we've put our foot in the door with the win," he said in the post match media conference.

"At 18-5 up, we had set a foundation, but I'm disappointing that we did not look after the ball better and we let them back into the game." added Gold.

"Internally we knew our plans for the night and we were not ruthless in some of our execution. We want to play ball-in-hand rugby but we have to look after the ball and not kick it away."

Gold acknowledged that the current team is a lot different than this year's Super Rugby line-up, with only eight players in the matchday squad that featured in that competition.

"We have targeted a young team for the Currie Cup and they are going to make the errors. But I am quite forgiving on mistakes, although not so on effort; but the effort was there in sticking to the fight, especially when the Kings took the lead. But I think we made life too difficult for ourselves," said Gold

"When we did look after the ball and played to our shape, we looked dangerous and there was good finishing."

One of the tries of the game came from Paul Jordaan who seems to have bounced back well from an horrific knee injury.

"After his hip operation a month ago he tweaked it again and we wondered if another op was needed, but he has just been coming good with his attitude to recovery and we will introduce him slowly." said Gold.

"But that was a proper finish for his try, there is no substitute for pace and he has gas to burn. And he has experience and will be a calm head in the midfield."

The Sharks face a well rounded Golden Lions team in the third round of the Currie Cup this Saturday in what should be another immense battle.