Sharks suffer Steyn and Mtembu blow for tour

The Sharks have suffered a double injury blow as centre Francois Steyn and No.8 Lubabalo Mtembu have both been ruled out of the rest of their tour.

The Sharks lost 25-22 to the Highlanders but the loss comes at a further cost as Steyn has suffered a suspected broken leg while Lubabalo Mtembu injured his shoulder.

The Sharks have played two matches already on tour and have matches against the Reds, in Brisbane on Friday and the the Western Force before they return to South Africa.

Sharks coach John Plumtree has lamented his team’s shocking injury toll which has left last year’s finalist pretty thin in back line stocks.

“Our injury situation is not good. Our backs are decimated,” he told AAP.

“We’ve just got to keep going. We’ve got to get some fit guys organised in time and just get on with it.”

The Sharks loss to the Highlanders leaves them in a difficult position as it was their fourth straight loss.

Coach Plumtree refused to knock his players after they repeatedly turned down opportunities to kick for posts which could have drawn the match and insted pushed for the try.

The Sharks became the first team to lose to the Highlanders in 11 matches as the Otago men last won in May last year.

“The boys wanted to get four points. Time was up on the clock and we wouldn’t have had time to get back down into their territory and win the game,” Plumtree said.

“It’s disappointing. We looked good when we had the ball and kept it but we had too many little opportunities that we didn’t nail.”

“You can’t doubt the boys’ effort but the changing room is a mess.”

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