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Floundering Sharks plunged into tighthead crisis following latest injury blow

By Jan De Koning
Hanro Jacobs of Hollywoodbets Sharks is tackled by Stephen Archer of Munster, left, during the United Rugby Championship match between Munster and Hollywoodbets Sharks at Thomond Park in Limerick. (Photo By Seb Daly/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

The Sharks, still rooted at the bottom of the United Rugby Championship standings, face a front row crisis.

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The Sharks slipped to an 18-20 loss to the Lions in a Round Eight catch-up match in Duran on Saturday – with Boeta Chamberlain having missed a last-gasp penalty.

Lions captain Marius Louw scored a 78th-minute maul try – converted by flyhalf-cum-scrumhalf Sanele Nohamba – to leave the Durban-based Sharks with just one win from nine starts.

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WATCH as Sharks coach John Plumtree explains to @king365ed the real reason behind his decision sign Kiwi power lifter Joel Hintz

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WATCH as Sharks coach John Plumtree explains to @king365ed the real reason behind his decision sign Kiwi power lifter Joel Hintz

Having already ‘imported’ a tighthead prop from New Zealand, Sharks coach John Plumtree confirmed that another front row forward suffered an injury.

“Hanro Jacobs appears to have damaged his AC [shoulder] joint,” Plumtree told @rugby365com, adding: “I’m not sure what that looks like.

“It is an issue, having lost another prop.”

New Zealand import Joel Hintz, who played off the bench in the 15-16 loss to the Stormers the previous week, came off the bench to replace the injured Jacobs in the second half in the loss to the Lions at the weekend.

World Cup-winning Springbok Vincent Koch is another five or six weeks away from a full recovery, having suffered a knee injury in the World Cup in France in October.

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Fellow Bok Coenie Oosthuizen also missed the encounter with the Lions at the weekend with an undisclosed injury and Plumtree gave no indication when he will be back.

That leaves the Sharks with a front row predicament ahead of the visit by French club Oyonnax for a Challenge Cup Round Three encounter this coming Saturday.

“We don’t seem to get one-weekers,” Plumtree said of the run of front row injuries, adding: “We seem to be getting five or six-weekers.

“Hopefully he [Jacobs] will recover quickly.”

Other players who were not available for selection this past weekend due to injury included Bongi Mbonambi, Dylan Richardson, Reniel Hugo, Le Roux Roets and Vincent Tshituka.

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