Sport / Rugby

Ken Borland
Sports Journalist
2 minute read
16 Oct 2021
4:30 pm

Everitt looks to Pienaar, Chamberlain to guide Sharks in Cardiff

Ken Borland

“Boeta is filling a big hole in terms of our depth at flyhalf, we’ve been blooding him, giving him confidence."

The Sharks will be hoping for another quality outing from Boeta Chamberlain when they take on Cardiff on Saturday. Picture: Ben Evans/Gallo Images

After their morale-boosting win over the Ospreys, the Sharks will once again be looking to the terrific game-management skills shown by halfbacks Ruan Pienaar and Boeta Chamberlain as they try to back up that triumph with victory over Cardiff in their United Rugby Championship match at the Arms Park on Saturday night.

Giving up territory and penalties were the two main problems for the Sharks in their opening two losses to Munster and Glasgow Warriors, but coach Sean Everitt is hopeful that those two departments have now been sorted out for their meeting with the Welshmen.

“We had struggled with our game-management, which meant we didn’t have any territory, and we also gave away a number of penalties,” Everitt said.

“But then it was totally different against Ospreys, we gave away very few penalties and that’s against a team that plays for penalties and territory. Ruan and Boeta were outstanding with the way they controlled the game.

“Boeta is filling a big hole in terms of our depth at flyhalf, we’ve been blooding him, giving him confidence, and I was very pleased with how he dominated the show. He has a big contribution to make.

“We left a few opportunities on the field though, the bonus point was there for the taking, so we have worked hard on our accuracy and execution. There was definitely still room for improvement,” Everitt said.

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The breakdown is sure to be a key area again and Cardiff, who utterly dominated that department in the first half of their loss against the Bulls but were then outwrestled there in the second half, derive much of their momentum from that phase.

Openside flank Dylan Richardson, whose talents were this week confirmed to be rehomed to Scotland rugby, will spearhead the Sharks’ efforts in that regard.

Like the Bulls, the Sharks have been in contact with former South African Test referee Tappe Henning, who is now the Match Official Commissioner in Scotland, to help them with the different interpretations being used at the breakdown up north.

“It’s been great to have Tappe with us. He helped the Bulls and he has certainly added value to us. We’ve been penalised quite heavily at the breakdown, but we do go hard at the ball. But also our attacking breakdown has been a struggle,” Everitt said.

The Sharks will be hoping the turnaround in fortunes at that crucial phase of the game will be as dramatic as it was for the Bulls.