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Spirits high after heartbreaking loss to Souths

It was another heartbreaking late loss for the Premier Men against Souths while Colts 1 showed vast improvement in the contact areas in a narrow loss. Meanwhile, the undefeated Premier Women went about their merry ways with a huge win. 

Premier Men  

Tyler Campbell
Bull Sharks captain Tyler Campbell 

Bull Sharks lost 25- 21. 

Where it was lost:

We were hard on the attack a couple of times and through some basic errors, and a bit of pure bad luck, we handed the ball back. We let in two long range tries which were some of the better bits of football you’ll ever see in Premier Rugby. We have some great talent and Tyler Campbell and Freddy Dorrough have ben doing a great job steering us, but when you make errors, really good players will take advantage of that. We scored some great tries ourselves but again we gave up a late lead. 

On reflection: 

I’ve been involved with plenty of sides and the spirit among this group is excellent. We have had some heartbreaking losses this year. The weekend was a classic example. We charged down a clearing kick when we had the opposition pinned to their own line, but the ball bounced out to their centres who orchestrated a 70m try. That try took great skill, but it still hurts knowing we were almost standing under the posts and instead we concede a try that costs us the game. But the players spirit hasn’t dropped, and Tuesday’s training session was as good as it gets.

What needs to change:

It’s about ball security. Our urgency in our support play and being able to consolidate our field position has to improve. Being really disciplined when we are getting into the attacking zone is the key to turning these close losses into wins.  

What made you happy:

Nixon Tarami was our best player in his first game back from a long-term shoulder injury. Unfortunately, he has another minor issue that may keep him out this week, but he showed what an asset he is going to be for us moving forward.

With Mick Heenan.  

Premier Women

Bull Sharks won 70-0.

Where it was won: 

Through the middle. With the wet weather conditions, it was always going to be a battle up front and we managed to get good momentum through our forwards with strong carries. Grace Baker led the way up front with dominant tackles and strong carries in tight.

The highlight: 

Returning loosehead prop Tamika Smith, whilst still finding her feet again at Premier Rugby level, was impressive up front.

What made you happy: 

With rotating and resting many key players it was very pleasing to see other squad members step up and perform. New halfback Tyler Birch was impressive with ball in hand and adds a different dimension to our attack.

Bull Sharks Football: 

Despite many changes to the line-up, we still managed to score plenty of tries and get some much-needed game time into many players.

The work to do: 

Improve on our defence and tackle height. We gave away too many penalties in the ruck and failing to adjust to the tackle height rulings. We need to get better there.

Trademark Player:

Ruby Power continues to impress in her debut season for the Bull Sharks. She gets through a lot of work in the ruck and on defence. She will be a player of the future for the club.

With Shannon Symon.  

Colts 1

Bull Sharks lost 31-22.

Where it was won: 

Souths took their opportunities a little better than we did and capitalised on our mistakes to score points. We didn't quite covert from the amount of pressure we applied on them. And we had two tries disallowed. 

The highlight:  

Our defence for the most part was very strong, and we forced a few turnovers with strong tackling from Nick Hilton and Oliver James. 

What made you happy:      

We have spent a few weeks now focusing on our contact areas, ruck clean out and support play. We are also looking to be more aggressive in the tackle collision. This was our best performance of the season in that area.

Bull Sharks Football:

We started the game really well from kick off. We got the ball back and applied lots of pressure which led to a great team try to Joe Murray. 

The work to do:

Tackle height is still an ongoing are for us to work on. The refs are hard on the new tackle law and we need to be better in this area.  

Trademark player: 

Prop Nikotimo Mateiwai with his strong ball carries and work rate around the field.

With Rico Gear. 


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