Mixed news for Sharks after losing to Chiefs

The Sharks have received mixed news after their 37-29 loss to the Chiefs in Hamilton as Frans Steyn is free to play this week but Cobus Reinach’s tour is over.

A SANZAR Judicial Hearing dismissed Frans Steyn’s citing for alleged foul play on Chiefs centre Tim Nanai-Williams.

However Cobus Reinach is on his way home after suffering an ankle injury and will be replaced by Tian Meyer.

The Sharks backline has been hit badly by a number of injuries so Steyn’s availability will be a huge boost to the squad.

Steyn had been cited for allegedley contravening Law 10.4 (h) but the SANZAR Judicial Hearing was heard by Jannie Lubbe SC and was assisted by Former Professional Player: Adam Magro said that, “Having carefully considered the available evidence and the submissions of Mr Swart, Lubbe concluded that it was not possible on the balance of probability that Steyn acted in breach of Law 10.4 (h). Mr Magro concurred with the conclusion. As a result the citing is dismissed. “

Sharks coach John Plumtree was relieved that Steyn had been cleared to play the Highlanders in Dunedin this weekend.

“Our midfield been decimated, so it’s fantastic that we have relief there with Frans’ not guilty verdict,” said Sharks coach John Plumtree.

On the loss to the Chiefs Plumtree was pleased with the Sharks fight-back after a disastrous start in the match but said he was disappointed that they couldn’t do more to win the game.

“I was fairly disappointed in the early lead we conceded, those three soft tries,” he admitted.

“One was well-worked from a lineout move, but we were disappointed with our defence, conceding that turnover try when we were on attack. So we found ourselves 24 points down before we had even managed to get going. That was probably the biggest thing for us.

“But I was really proud of the way the boys found field position, we took a couple of opportunities through our driving lineout, getting themselves back into the game, at half-time it was anyone’s game and that was really pleasing.”

“I thought Wiehahn has gone pretty well, our scrum was consistent, our lineout functioned really well, we had ball and we got more width to our game which we had worked hard on in the week leading up to the game.

“But the frustrating thing for us has been all the injuries, not being able to play regular combinations has made life more difficult for our attack. That injury list just keeps growing with Cobus Reinach and Paul Jordaan both out, two of our faster attacking backs back home. “

The Sharks have struggled to score tries this year but against the Chiefs they got the bonus point for scoring tries and Plumtree was thrilled with that side of the Sharks game.

“The Chiefs boast good defence, so for us to get a bonus point for scoring four tries was great,” said Plumtree on the Sharks site.

“But we’ve been pretty frustrated with the lack of continuity in combinations, that hasn’t helped. I don’t like offering excuses, but the number of injuries we’ve got is ridiculous, it’s making life hard.”

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