It was a tight affair and one that could have gone either way, but in the end the DHL Stormers will be delighted to have come away with a hard-fought 15-12 victory over the Sharks on Saturday evening.
Whilst the visitors dominated large portions of the contest, coach Allister Coetzee was delighted to come away with victory in such a tight match. He said: “It was a fantastic win and I am very pleased. One can never underestimate the Sharks, they pitched tonight and played very well. Derby games are always tough and unforgiving, but we did enough tonight so I am very happy.
“A few years ago we would have lost this game. We were in a dark place particularly during the first half, but we got out of it. We scrummed well and competed well in the lineouts. Credit must go to the team for how they responded and we are delighted to come away with four points.”
Coetzee admits that the Sharks had the better of the exchanges, particularly in the first half, but he praised his side’s ability to stay in touch despite the Durban side’s dominance.
“We were on the back foot in the first half, but we managed to keep ourselves in touch and that was a positive going into the second half. The Sharks threw the kitchen sink at us, but we managed to hold out and win even if we weren’t playing our best. It is fantastic for young guys like Steven Kitshoff and Eben Etzebeth. Kitshoff did fantastically well against Jannie Du Plessis at the end and after our pack was heavily criticised it is a fantastic response.
“We know there is a lot that needs to be looked at and improved on, but we continue our winning run and picked up the points and that at the end of the day is the most important thing.”
The DHL Stormers will go into their bye week with no new injuries. They next face the Blues in 2 weeks time, who after suffering two defeats in the opening weeks travel to Loftus next weekend to face the Vodacom Bulls.
DHL Stormers – Penalties: Joe Pietersen (3), Peter Grant (2).
Sharks – Penalty: Pat Lambie (4).