Sharks expecting to hit the ground running despite delay

Sharks expecting to hit the ground running despite delay

Given the uncertainty around international travel and how the South African franchises will compete in the coming months, the Cell C Sharks are taking everything in their stride as they prepare for their Rainbow Cup SA opener against the Stormers this Saturday.

Thomas du Toit

The Rainbow Cup was supposed to start last weekend, however with the travel restrictions in place for South Africans travelling to Europe, the competition had to be changed and will now see the South African sides play each other home and away.

Despite the late notice, Sharks prop Thomas du Toit believes that the side have got so used to these changes that they have seen it as another opportunity to be prepared for their upcoming local derbies.

“It wasn’t the biggest of disruptions for us,” Du Toit said. “We took some time away as a team and we got some more training in so we got more detail complete and had more time to polish stuff.

“So I don’t think that it was the worst thing in the world.”

Given the change in the schedule and the lack of international competition, Du Toit believes that the side aren’t concerned about that and are just focusing on getting themselves ready for their first match of the new campaign.

“The mindset of the side throughout the COVID-19 pandemic has stayed the same and we are just taking it week by week.

“We are not trying to look too far into the future and we face new challenges each week which have helped in us not looking too far ahead.”

Despite the Sharks having the rub over the Stormers following their Currie Cup semi-final triumph, Du Toit knows that the side from the Western Cape is a proud unit and will always be a tough opponent.

“The Stormers will always have a quality side and I think they are in a better space now then they might have been previously.

“With their strong pack and solid game plans we know that it is going to be a proper challenge.

“They will never shy away from a physical battle and we know that but they have added a different aspect to their game [expansive rugby] and we are preparing for that as well,” Du Toit added.

The Cell C Sharks begin their Rainbow Cup SA campaign on Saturday 1 May against the Stormers at the Cape Town Stadium with kick-off at 14:00.


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