No mercy for Cats – AJ

Sharks and Springbok flank AJ Venter has said his team will show no mercy when they clash with the Calamity Cats at Ellis Park on Saturday.

“I was rooting for them to beat the Reds on the weekend,” Venter told, “but come Saturday it will be a totally different story. There will be no sympathy from either side. These are the kinds of matches the guys look forward to all season.”

Venter, who was part of the Lions team that thrashed the Sharks in the 1999 Currie Cup final in Durban, still has a soft spot for the Lions and Cats, but said he would go about his normal game this coming weekend. “Although some people are surprised and happy with our performances this season, we actually wanted to be better placed. The guys really want to win on the weekend.”

“When two South African sides play against each other it is like a Test match and it doesn’t matter if it is the top team playing the bottom team. We always seem to save our best and hardest games for each other,” he said.

The Sharks have just come off a short break, having had a bye this past weekend, but getting some proper training was proving difficult on Monday.

“Robbie Williams fever has hit Durban,” explained Venter, “and with the concert taking place at the stadium tonight, all we managed to fit in today was gym session. Training has been a mission.”

You gave read AJ’s daily thoughts on

Venter and most of his team-mates and partners were all going to the concert. “I’m a big fan, actually. It should be great, but then it’s back to the grindstone tomorrow.”

The 1,98m and 112kg loosie, who runs his own website called, believes he is slowly getting back into form after recovering from surgery. “It’s taken me a few games to get the rhythm back, but I’m looking forward to playing. I’m just happy to be involved again.”

By Andrew Hollely