Stormers fans were left in disbelief on Saturday, after their team coughed up a lead in the final minute, with the Sharks leading a successful attack from deep within their own territory.
That late try saw the Sharks squeak a 12-9 win at Newlands, in a game that nobody would describe as a classic.
If you didn’t watch this one, fair play to you.
I’m hesitant to call these ‘highlights’, but here’s what you missed:
Sour grapes aside (I find my enthusiam for Super Rugby at an all-time low, but we want to rub a win in the face of Sharks supporters who care), rugby was the real loser here.
Well, rugby and Robert du Preez, who called the Durban media ‘cockroaches’ in the press conference following the win:
— SA Rugby magazine (@SARugbymag) June 15, 2019
That points to a clearly frustrated figure, and a union where there’s plenty going on behind the scenes. Let’s check out the Citizen:
…the Sharks’ senior coaching structure is in ruins with no less than three assistants having called it quits due to differences with Du Preez.
Defence and kicking coach Braam van Straaten is off to the Southern Kings, while backs and skills coach Ricardo Loubscher is joining former Bok coach Heyneke Meyer at Stade Francais in Paris.
Loubscher had been backs coach at the national side during Meyer’s tenure.
Another, Alan Zondagh, is also going overseas.
The report further states that both Van Straaten and Loubscher hadn’t travelled with the team on different occasions due to clashes with Du Preez.
A Sharks spokesperson refuted an allegation of a player revolt, saying that Du Preez “is in constant communication with senior players” and that there’s a “marked difference between robust debate and a mutiny”.
When you’re defining the difference between ‘robust debate’ and ‘mutiny’, chances are you’re in a bit of a dark place.
According to Sport24, Sharks CEO Gary Teichmann says that du Preez “has the full backing of the union”:
Teichmann stated: “Robert is the coach and has our full support. I also believe now is not the time to comment on such matters. We only want to focus on rugby.”
Much of the criticism of du Preez stems from what many have said is clear nepotism, where he has often picked his own son, Robert Jr., ahead of Curwin Bosch in the pivotal flyhalf position.
The decision to move Bosch to fullback, against the Jaguares in particular, was met with widespread derision.
Du Preez’s coaching contract runs until the end of 2020.
If he survives until then, nepotism accusations won’t be a problem, as Robert Jr., along with brothers Dan and Jean-Luc, are all buggering off to play for the Sale Sharks.
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