Siya Kolisi (l) celebrates a try with teammate Sikhumbuzo Notshe of the Sharks. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
Siya Kolisi (l) celebrates a try with teammate Sikhumbuzo Notshe of the Sharks. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

Sikhumbuzo Notshe hoping Siya Kolisi reunion will bring success at the Sharks

By Mike Greenaway Time of article published May 6, 2021

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Durban - There was something of a Stormers reunion in the Sharks loose trio that played in Cape Town last week, with openside flank Siya Kolisi once more allied to No 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, just as they were for innumerable games for the Stormers.

Notshe joined the Sharks at the beginning of the 2020 season, relaunching his career in spectacular fashion during the Sharks’ successful Super Rugby campaign.

ALSO READ: If I miss it now I will never play against the British and Irish Lions, says Sikhumbuzo Notshe

Notshe enjoyed a new lease on life as he helped propel the Sharks to the top of the standings.

Now, Springbok captain Kolisi has joined him in Durban, and he will be hoping to hit the same heights as Notshe has done at their new team.

“I am not sure you can call it a reunion, but yes, we have played a lot together and know each other’s games well,” Notshe said ahead of the Sharks’ Rainbow Cup SA match against the Lions at Jonsson Kings Park in Durban on Saturday (4pm kickoff).

“The most important thing is that we have to complement each other, and work together, and I can’t see how that is going to be a problem.

“Siya is a good guy, a good leader, a good player and a good friend.”

ALSO READ: ’Siya wasn’t my friend during our game last week,’ says Stormers’ Scarra Ntubeni

The pair will have a second game together in Sharks colours against the Lions, and Notshe said that there were a few areas of concern from the Stormers game that they are looking to fix – notably looking after the ball carrier better and fixing their line-out that struggled in the first half.

“We allowed the ball carrier to get isolated too often and this allowed the opposition to make turnovers. We have worked hard on fixing this at training this week,” the 27-yearold said.

Regarding the line-outs, Notshe said there had been mitigating circumstances.

“We had a new No 5 (Reniel Hugo) calling the line-outs and new combinations sometimes take time to gel, ” he said.

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“It is not the fault of individuals, but a whole pack combination thing. We are working on it.”

On a positive note, Notshe said it was the character of the team that got them through to the win after they had looked on course for a sound beating.

“It is the same character that clinched us a number of close games in the Currie Cup, and it is the same character that will sustain us through the rest of the Rainbow Cup,”

Notshe said.

“At one stage, we were 23-3 down (at the Cape Town Stadium) and we spoke behind the poles about how our energy and intensity were good, and we just needed to keep the enthusiasm and the feeling for each other going. We must never lose that – it is what got us over the line.

“At the end, we could easily have conceded a penalty but our defence stood firm and that eventually forced them to kick a grubber, which is always a 50-50, and luckily for us the bounce went our way (with Ruhan Nel unable to ground the ball in the in-goal area).”

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