Second-row setback for Sharks

Ross Skeate’s injury could force the Sharks to field an unbalanced second-row combination against the Reds on Saturday.

Skeate sustained a hip-flexor injury towards the end of the first half of last Saturday’s clash against the Lions. Word from the Sharks camp is that he won’t be available for the next game against the Reds, meaning the Sharks will go into that match without a recognised No 5 lock.

Alistair Hargreaves is still two weeks away from a comeback, and so coach John Plumtree looks likely to field the combination that finished the game against the Lions with Anton Bresler packing down alongside Steven Sykes.

Bresler struggled in that No 5 position in the Sharks’ first match of the season. The Sharks were outplayed by the Bulls at the lineout and in the final analysis those set-piece failings proved costly.