Sport24.co.za | Du Preez hails 'special' Sharks comeback

Sport24.co.za | Du Preez hails 'special' Sharks comeback
Sport24.co.za | Du Preez hails 'special' Sharks comeback

2018-07-02 10:23

Cape Town - Sharks coach Robert du Preez has praised his side following their come-from-behind 31-24 win against the Lions in Durban on Saturday. 

The Sharks became the first South African side in 22 attempts to beat the Lions in Super Rugby but, more importantly, the result kept their playoff chances alive. 

READ: SA Super Rugby playoff picture

They still have two tough matches remaining against the Stormers (away) and Jaguares (home), but the Sharks are still in the hunt for a quarter-final spot. 

21-11 down with over 50 minutes played, it didn't look good for the Durbanites in front of their home crowd, but a spirited fight back got the job done with veteran wing Lwazi Mvovo scoring the winning try. 

"We obviously didn't have any possession in the first half and also no territory," Du Preez explained after the match.

"I knew that we would need a really special performance and a big fight-back from the boys, so I just asked them to play for each other and fight for each other, and that's what they did.

"It's one game at a time. This is obviously our campaign back on track."

Du Preez believes that it was his side's defence that ultimately won them the game.

"I thought our defence was outstanding apart from the two soft tries at the beginning of the game," he said.

"I think that took its toll and we broke them down defensively. That gave us the upper hand."

Du Preez also heaped praise on man-of-the-match Akker van der Merwe and replacement hooker Chiliboy Ralepelle. 

"Akker has been great and I thought he had a fantastic game," said Du Preez.

"I also thought Chili did very well when he came on and he made a big difference, especially in the scrums."

The Sharks remain 3rd in the South African Conference and 9th on the overall log. 

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