While Lady Luck at last sided with the Sharks last weekend when they recorded their first victory in this year’s Super 14 campaign, they are struggling with injuries going into their match against the Hurricanes this Saturday.
In addition to the dreary weather that welcomed their arrival in Wellington, the Sharks reported for duty on Monday with a number of injury casualties — something that is par for the course after five gruelling matches on tour.
This Saturday, they will face the Canes before making their long-awaited journey home, but already veteran lock Johann Muller has been ruled out of action with a finger injury.
Flanker Keegan Daniels’ availability is also in doubt as he is nursing a shoulder injury, while the likes of Jannie du Plessis, Jean Deysel and Andy Goode, are also battling with various injury niggles.
However, the Sharks should expect to have Tendai “Beast” Mtawarira back in the mix after he missed last weekend’s match with illness, and Odwa Ndungane could also make a return to action if he overcomes a hamstring strain that sidelined him against the Highlanders.
In Muller’s absence, Alistair Hargreaves is likely to partner Steven Sykes in the second row, while Jacques Botes would simply rotate in for Keegan Daniel should he be ruled out of action.
“We’re pretty banged up but hopefully everyone will back on board by Thursday,” Sharks coach John Plumtree said at the team’s base in his former home town of Wellington.
“We know it’s going to be a pretty desperate Hurricanes team and we have plenty to do.”
The match kicks-off at 8.35am SA time.