Sharks Boss White wary of experienced Reds

Sharks director of rugby Jake White has admitted that he is wary of the Reds as they bring a wealth of experience and several Super Rugby title winners.

White’s Sharks lead the Super Rugby standings after three matches at home and this will be their fourth at Kings Park in Durban.

The Sharks have beaten the Bulls, Hurricanes and Lions but White says that the Reds are possibly their toughest assignment of the season so far.

“There is no doubt that the Reds have a lot of experience. They’ve won the competition and a lot of their current players were in that winning team,” Whites said ahead of the game.

“So they understand what it takes to win and they travel quite well as a group.”

White said the Reds had a quality nine and 10 in Quade Cooper and Will Genia and the Wallaby captain James Horwill leading them.

“They have the makings of a good team and cannot be taken lightly. They have shown that when they beat the Brumbies and Cheetahs.”

White, who was in charge of the Brumbies for two seasons, said he was hoping to make use of his inside knowledge on the Queensland-based visitors.

“I know what makes them tick having coached in Australia and I’m looking forward to that.”

The former Springbok boss is hoping that the Sharks will continue their strong start to the 2014 Super Rugby season despite some injuries creaping in.

“We start the competition with a number of home games which is great, and we wanted to get some momentum in the competition.”

“Everyone knows the guys have worked hard, had a tough pre-season and put the hard yards.”

“The guys have had game time and the whole squad is starting to feel that they’re contributing to where we are.”

However, White has been forced into making some changes to his side this week. Since naming his side on Thursday, Pieter-Steph du Toit was ruled out of the match with a knee injury sustained at training. He has been replaced by Stephan Lewies.

The Bok lock joined centre Paul Jordaan (knee) and wing Odwa Ndungane (compassionate leave) on the sidelines with S’bura Sithole and JP Pietersen drafted in.

Flyhalf Patrick Lambie is also back after illness as Frans Steyn reverts to midfield.

The Reds, meanwhile, made three changes to their XV with winger Lachie Turner returning after a knee problem ahead of Dom Shipperley.

James Slipper and Saia Fainga’a take over from Ben Daley and James Hanson in the front row.

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