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Sharks to play Test rugby

  • 18 Jul 2014
Marcell Coetzee is one of 12 Sharks' Boks Marcell Coetzee is one of 12 Sharks' Boks

The Sharks will approach their play-off qualifier against the Highlanders at Kings Park on Saturday as if it were a Test.

That shouldn't be too difficult as there are 12 Springboks in the Sharks match 23.

'What excites me the most is that knockout rugby is similar to Test rugby,' said Sharks director of rugby Jake White, who coached the Boks to World Cup glory in 2007. 'You play the way you would a Test. We almost have a Test team, and the players know how to approach a one-off game. It's knockout rugby, so in a lot of ways, we don't have to change much about about what we've done this season because when we play our best rugby it's pretty much the style you would play in a knockout game.

'You just have to win, it doesn't matter how,' White added. 'It means you can't take too many risks. The reality is that the opposition are not going to either. It's about being game ready, how to get out of your half. It's about when you do get opportunities, you have to take them.

'You only get two or three opportunities, and the team that reacts the quickest – and takes them – wins the game. I don't believe teams will run out of their 22 or try fancy chip kicks out of their 22 when they know it's a knockout game.'

Preview: Sharks vs Highlanders

Photo: Sabelo Mngoma/BackpagePix

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