Super Rugby: Sharks punish stuttering Waratahs at Kings Park
By Ben Hampshire | @BH92. Last Updated: 29/03/14 5:52pm
The Sharks extended their lead at the Super Rugby summit with a 32-10 victory over an undisciplined Waratahs side at Kings Park.
Fred Zeilinga kicked three first-half penalties and Francois Steyn also slotted over the post as the hosts took a 12-3 lead into the break in Durban, with Bernard Foley's strike the lone reprieve for the Waratahs.
The visitors' indiscipline continued after the break as captain Dave Dennis was shown a yellow card, before Ryan Kankowski and Keegan Daniel crossed the whitewash as the Sharks raced to victory, meaning Foley's late try was little but consolation for the Waratahs.
Despite being on away soil, the Waratahs made a typically attacking start as Adam Ashley-Cooper charged towards the whitewash, only for the Sharks to scramble in and prevent the try.
As the visitors continued to press forward, the Sharks remained resilient, until conceding the penalty which allowed Bernard Foley to put the Waratahs in front.
Sharks started to find their rhythm as the opening quarter played out and drew a penalty on the Waratahs 22, which Zeilinga slotted over with ease.
The hosts were awarded a second penalty on 15 minutes when Rob Horne was caught swinging a high arm on Steyn and Zeilinga ensured the Waratahs paid the price.
A lack of discipline at the scrum gave Zeilinga a third penalty before Foley squandered the opportunity to respond as his place kick drifted wide.
With the Waratahs struggling to work through the phases, Zeilinga kicked upfield and caught the visitors offside and Steyn struck through the upright from his own half.
Foley wasted a second kick on goal as the Sharks took a 12-3 lead into the break.
Waratahs returned from the break with the intention of playing running rugby, but were thwarted by a number of handling errors, which allowed the Sharks to turn the ball over.
New South Wales skipper Dennis was sent to the sin bin for pushing and the Sharks immediately utilised their numerical advantage.
Having won their line-out, the Sharks established a maul and drove their way over the line, with Kankowski claiming the score, while Zeilinga made no mistake from the tee.
Michael Cheika's men continued to lack discipline and Zeilinga slotted home his fourth penalty of the afternoon from halfway line as the Sharks took a 22-3 lead.
The Sharks extended their lead with eight minutes to play as Daniel raced over the line after a clever tap-and-go move, before Zeilinga's conversion gave the hosts a 26-point advantage.
However, the Waratahs were not willing to settle as they stretched the Sharks' defence late on, with Foley racing over their only try of the match after Kurtley Beale exposed the gap.
Zeilinga added a fifth three-pointer to complete the Sharks haul as they strengthened their lead at the Super Rugby summit.