Inconsistent Sharks need to find belief

The Sharks are heavy underdogs in their Super Rugby quarterfinal at the table-topping Lions on Saturday, in a season where they have shown inconsistent form, following one fine performance with a dismal outing.

But that is perhaps the reason why they cannot be ruled out altogether, as the Durban-based side have proven this campaign that while they can be dire, they can also be a match for anybody on their day.

Coach Robert du Preez admits that consistency has been an issue, but is hopeful that presented with the opportunity to perform an upset against the Lions, who are unbeaten in 13 games at Ellis Park and have scored 199 points in their last three matches there, his side will seize the day.

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“It’s do or die for us now, it’s a final,” he said. “It’s all to play for and everything that’s gone before is over now, and we have one bite at the cherry.

“We have that opportunity, so it’s in our hands, in the players’ hands.”

The Sharks claimed nine wins from their 15 regular season games, with one of those defeats coming at Ellis Park when they lost 34-29 on 1 April.

They were also beaten in Durban by the Lions this past weekend, going down 27-10 in a low quality game.

“We know there were games that we should easily have won, that’s the disappointment about these 15 games, that it was so up and down,” Du Preez says.

“We couldn’t build momentum. But we have a go at this and I believe that if the players really believe in themselves, we can win this game.”

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