The Sharks and Rebels are two sides both trying to regroup after demoralising losses in their previous fixtures, but Springbok prop Coenie Oosthuizen is warning that the Melbourne team that takes to the field in Durban on Saturday is not going to be the same outfit that fell to pieces in the second half at Ellis Park last weekend.
The Sharks were flying high, level with the Bulls at the top of the South African Conference when they went to Loftus Versfeld two weeks ago, but they suffered a 37-14 hiding that has seen them drop to fourth in the standings. The Rebels somehow fluffed a 33-5 lead over the Lions at Ellis Park to go down 36-33.
“The Rebels have been on fire and it would be a big mistake to underestimate them though,” Oosthuizen warned, however, on Tuesday.
“They were undefeated until that loss last weekend so they are going to be a massive challenge, especially with their running game. They will have learnt from the huge mistakes they made in the second half against the Lions.
“So it would be a big mistake for us to think the Rebels side that played in the second half at Ellis Park is going to pitch up against us. We have to come out swinging this weekend and a loss like that against the Bulls is something we take very personally, it weighs on your mind. But in Super Rugby, every week is a new week to test and challenge oneself.”
The Grey College product, who turns 30 on Friday, knows that it has to start with him and his fellow forwards, that they need to get the same go-forward they generated in their wins over the Blues and Sunwolves.
“Us forwards have made a lot of mistakes the last two games, and stupid errors at scrum time, but we are growing as a pack. But there’s still a helluva lot more to be done and we all have so much more to give. Everyone realised during our bye week that we needed to take a deep look at ourselves and need to step up. Everyone has to work 10% harder and hopefully we show that this weekend,” Oosthuizen said.