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Currie Cup Final: Sharks player ratings vs Bulls

By Online Editors

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Jan de Koning / Rugby365

The Sharks let a 10-point lead slip to suffer a heart-breaking 19-26 loss to the Bulls in the Currie Cup final at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.

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The visitors held a 13-9 lead at the half-time break and had a 19-9 advantage with 20 minutes to go.

However, they saw the chance of a ninth title slip out of their grasp when the Bulls scored 10 unanswered points in the final quarter and then scored the winner with less than a minute remaining – after the game went into extra time.

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Ryan Wilson and Jamie Roberts are joined on the panel this week by former Scotland international and Francophile Johnnie Beattie to preview the upcoming Six Nations squads. The lads discuss the Lions tour, Fabian Galthie and another Tourist XV pick.
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Ryan Wilson and Jamie Roberts are joined on the panel this week by former Scotland international and Francophile Johnnie Beattie to preview the upcoming Six Nations squads. The lads discuss the Lions tour, Fabian Galthie and another Tourist XV pick.

It is a tale of missed opportunities and a game in which several Sharks players did more talking than playing.

The forwards did their jobs, but the backs let them down.

Jan de Koning rates the Sharks players below:

15. Aphelele Fassi – 5
A quiet day by his standard, but not the type of game in which he could express himself. Had a few runs with limited success and missed a couple of tackles.

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14. Sibusiso Nkosi – 6
Showed his finishing ability to score the opening try, but made a couple of crucial mistakes – including conceding a penalty. Solid under the high ball.

13. Lukhanyo Am – 7
His game management was great, even though he rushed out of line at times on defence. Very few chances with ball in hand, but was rock solid on defence – making nine tackles.

12. Marius Louw – 5
Not the type of game that suited his style. Quiet on attack and made just 70 per cent of his tackles.

11. Yaw Penxe – 5
Worked hard and good under the high ball, but made the odd silly error and missed several tackles.

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10. Curwin Bosch – 4
Had his moments, but not his best game. Not as accurate at goal, missing three first-half penalties. Then found his range and rhythm and lost it again. His decision-making and execution also lacked at times.

9. Jaden Hendrikse – 4
Lots of accurate kicking from the base – the best part of his game. However, was very lippy, perhaps too much so, prompting a chirp from the referee: ‘You have a lot of advice for your first Currie Cup [Final].’ Later he got another lecture from the ref. Also made mistakes behind the scrum and his decision-making let him down at times. Perhaps he should have concentrated on his own game more.

8. Sikhumbuzo Notshe – 7
Not flawless, but the most productive ball-carrying forward for the visitors. Showed some amazing skills, with the odd grubber, made a heap of tackles and even won a turnover.

7. Henco Venter – 6
Slow start – conceding penalty – but improved his workrate after the break. Made all his tackles.

6. Dylan Richardson – 6
Quiet first half, but really came into his own after the break. Made nine tackles and missed just two.

5. Ruben van Heerden – 6
Discipline was an issue, with three crucial penalties conceded. His kick-receives on point and he made eight tackles.

4. Juan van der Mescht – 5
His workrate was enormous, winning a crucial turnover. However, let his team down on defence on occasion.

3. Thomas du Toit – 7
Stood his ground in early scrums, but then under pressure and retreating. Won three crucial turnovers in the second half and had a great workrate on defence.

2. Fezokuhle Mbatha – 5
Was virtually anonymous throughout his stay on the field – other than at the set pieces.

1. Retshegofaditswe Nché – 6
Monstered Trevor Nyakane in the early scrums and did some great work on the ground. His workrate was great, missed just one tackle and conceded a penalty.

Replacements:

16. Dan Jooste – 6
Brought some real energy, but struggled in the set-pieces – including a skew throw at line-out.

17. Mzamo Majola – 5
Solid set pieces, but conceded a crucial penalty in extra time.

18. Michael Kumbirai – 5
Made a handful of tackles, but otherwise no real impact.

19. Hyron Andrews – 6
Made all his tackles and won a late turnover.

20. Thembelani Bholi – 6
Brought some real energy in a late cameo – making all but one of his tackles and won a turnover.

21. Sanele Nohamba – 5
Gave away a crucial penalty and otherwise no impact.

22. Jeremy Ward – 6
Brought some calm and good decision-making in his cameo. Not enough time to make a real impact.

23. Manie Libbok – N/A
Not used.

RECAP: Currie Cup Final: Sharks vs Bulls

Jan de Koning / Rugby365

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Currie Cup Final: Sharks player ratings vs Bulls

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