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Sharks inflict heavy defeat on Dragons with Bok stars back

By PA
(Photo by Steve Haag/Gallo Images)

The Sharks claimed their first win in the United Rugby Championship this season at the sixth time of asking following a 69-14 home triumph over the Dragons.

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Victory saw the South Africans climb off the bottom of the table after the Dragons failed to build on last week’s win over the Ospreys – their first of the campaign.

The Sharks ran in 10 tries through doubles from Aphelele Fassi and Grant Williams and further scores from Makazole Mapimpi, Werner Kok, Eben Etzebeth, Phepsi Buthelezi, Lappies Labuschagne and Lukhanyo Am.

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Curwin Bosch landed five penalties and a conversion with Boeta Chamberlain converting three tries.

Dane Blacker and Rio Dyer responded for the Dragons, with Cai Evans and Rhodri Williams adding the extras.

Attack

169
Passes
93
126
Ball Carries
82
316m
Post Contact Metres
178m
12
Line Breaks
7

Bosch kicked an early penalty before the first try came as a clean lineout win opened up the Dragons defence and Fassi slid over and quick hands from another Sharks break saw Mapimpi dive over in the corner for a second.

But the Dragons rallied and they found a hole in the Sharks’ back line before a pass inside saw scrum-half Blacker coast in for a score under the posts.

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Kok then held onto a superb offload to stretch the Sharks’ lead and moments later their dominance told as a quick tap penalty helped Etzebeth go over for the bonus-point score.

Another lineout win created space for the Sharks and, as the Dragons were cut wide open, Williams had the easiest of tasks to slide over.

But the Dragons would not lie down and back they came as Dyer collected the ball from the kick-off to go over in the corner.

That was as good as it got for the Welsh province as the relentless South Africans cut through their defences.

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Buthelezi powered over after yet more dominant play and soon after Williams scythed through the Dragons defence before flipping the ball up to Labuschagne to coast over.

As the Dragons tired, the Sharks made hay as Williams, Fassi and Am put the icing on the cake with three tries in five minutes.

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Eabn 6 hours ago
Open-minded Schmidt takes hands-on approach to Australia challenge

Who cares - boring is good when it comes to Media - they don’t bug you as much. While the focus is on the resurrection of the Wallabies, don’t forget the grass roots - Any opportunity you have to visit, train or promote Rugby down here in Melbourne / Regional is pretty much imperative given the current situation with the Rebels. I’m talking about us grass roots clubs and more so, clubs in the West of Melbourne who are being absolutely smashed by Rugby League and who have been contributing directly to the game down here long before the Rebels emerged and no doubt will do so well after they may be gone. All I have heard is all about the elite level, not the grass roots level so while the talk is about “ The Wallabies” and “Super Rugby Pacific” get back to the roots of Union and include us in your plans. So Phil Waugh and those leaders within RugbyAustralia, it’s on you to ensure the bottom feeders, so to speak, are included in all the talk and the funding if you want Union to regain ground and more respect within the Union and also the broader sporting fraternity. Given you have been in Melbourne a number off times over the last month, extending the courtesy of having a meet and greet with Victorian grass root clubs eluded you for some reason. Do we count or matter in RA’s and yours bigger picture?? Ean Drummond - Club Founder/President - Wyndham City Rhinos RUFC Inc. Hoppers Crossing, Melbourne.

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