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Ken Borland

Everitt’s focus is on why Sharks were practically residents in Edinburgh’s 22 but could only score 5pts

Posted on April 21, 2022 by Ken

The Sharks spent so much time in the Edinburgh 22 that they were practically residents, but they only managed to score five points in their United Rugby Championship match in Durban, so their awful finishing was unsurprisingly the focus of coach Sean Everitt’s post-match press conference.

Their 21-5 loss to Edinburgh means the Sharks have now slipped to eighth place behind the Stormers and Bulls and are in danger of slipping out of the playoff spots.

“It’s extremely frustrating when you create so many opportunities and you just can’t finish them,” Everitt said. “Against top teams, you need to take every opportunity and the points on offer.

“We got our maul going but we just could not finish off and capitalise on that. We had territorial and possession advantage, but we missed penalties and at times missed touch too.

“Our plan worked quite well and we got into position, but we just weren’t clinical enough to round off. It’s the same challenge every week.

“It’s all about accuracy at this higher level, how accurately you can execute on the opportunities you are given. We will have to review the game and see where we can get better,” Everitt said.

The defeat will place the spotlight firmly on some of Everitt’s selections. Curwin Bosch has now been given a run starting at flyhalf, but he was poor against Edinburgh, failing to kick a couple of penalties to touch and missing all three of his shots at goal, one of them from in front of the poles.

The departure of captain Lukhanyo Am to Japan has obviously unsettled the team and the Sharks are battling to replace him at outside centre, with Ben Tapuai and Jeremy Ward tried there without conspicuous success.

While the Sharks were cruising to bonus point wins over the likes of Benetton, the Scarlets and Zebre, they were still performances with a high error-count, especially in terms of finishing, and the worry was that the cracks that had been papered over would be exposed by the top URC sides.

Edinburgh certainly proved that to be the case as they made shark fin soup of the home side at a sopping wet Kings Park.

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