Despite suffering a loss, the Sharks are looking to take momentum from last week’s Toyota Cup match against the Cheetahs into Saturday’s United Rugby Championship clash against Scarlets at Kings Park Stadium.
The Sharks had a difficult start to their URC campaign, winning just one of four games on their European Tour before taking off for the international break, and they were keen to pick up a win against the Cheetahs to take into their home round of fixtures.
And while an exciting match ended with the hosts earning a 40-34 victory, the experience picked up in that game was invaluable, especially with the Cheetahs playing a similar brand of rugby to Scarlets, according to Sharks flank Henco Venter.
“I think their (Scarlets) style of rugby is a lot like the Cheetahs. They look to play a very attacking brand of rugby, bringing the backs and forwards in and just playing off the ball,” explained Venter.
“We are going to get a lot of the challenges that we got on the weekend from the Cheetahs. That’s why the Cheetahs was such a good game beforehand and why the coaches decided to do it.
“But we will definitely be up for whatever they (Scarlets) bring to the party. They have a lot of respect for the ball, so with that and their attacking brand, your cleaners must be really good.”
Venter also admitted the Sharks were keen to use the home conditions to their advantage, with a humid evening expected on Saturday, while the players will also be cheered on by a small home crowd which will help to left their spirits.
“We know how to address the humidity in Durban, what game to play, because it’s different than in winter,” Venter said.
“Playing against the Sharks when I was at the Cheetahs, you always knew the humidity was coming but you didn’t always know how to handle it.
“I think that will definitely be something we will look to utilise this weekend.”