“The Reds were very good at scrum time against the Sunwolves, and we really respect that, but we will never back off from taking them on. We are excited and certainly not scared”
THE Sharks conclude their overseas tour in Brisbane this weekend in a game they will be feeling is home away from home considering the Durban-like humidity.
Only the Sunwolves’ home destination of Singapore can rival Durban and Brisbane for cloying heat at this time of the year in Super Rugby and the Reds last week found the stifling conditions to their liking when they smashed the Sunwolves 64-5.
It was the Reds’ first win of the season and they notched it up in style, and it sets up an enthralling contest given that the Sharks were impressive in beating the Rebels and will throw everything at winning their last match on tour.
The Sharks were much better in the set scrums against the Rebels from their matches against the Highlanders and Hurricanes but the worry is that they have so much more to do against a Reds side that is high on confidence.
“The Reds were very good at scrum time against the Sunwolves, and we really respect that, but we will never back off from taking them on. We are excited and certainly not scared,” tighthead Thomas du Toit said.
The Sharks are gaining increasing support because of the adventurous way they play, and Du Toit says that the public perception can only be enhanced by consistently attractive performances.
“We keep saying that how we play is about who we are and about sticking to what works – in short we are a performance-driven team, and I believe the public is seeing what we are trying to do, “ Du Toit added.
Last week, the Reds were outstanding against the Sunwolves, but Du Toit is not worried.
“We are capable of dealing with anything, and regarding the Reds, there is nothing that we need to stand back from. We look forward to what they have to offer,” Du Toit challenged.
“We know that we have rectified our mistakes and have identified what we have to cut out.”
Du Toit last week rejoined hooker Kerron van Vuuren and loosehead Ox Nche in what is the Shark’s ideal front row. Against the Hurricanes in Wellington, neither Du Toit or Nche started for illness and logistical reasons, but last week against the Rebels, the Sharks were back on track and were impressive against a tough pack.
“It is nice to be restored to our best front row,” Du Toit said. “Ox is an amazing loosehead, and it is really cool to have our ideal front row back in business and hungry to be beat the best.”