Having roared into the Currie Cup final, coach Ackermann must take the credit for turning a group of unsung players into winners.
Sharks utility back S'bura Sithole says the team has every chance of toppling the Lions in Saturday's semifinal.
With the seniors tumbling, the striplings may turn the tide of the provincial and national sides.
The two powerhouse teams have found themselves falling behind, and both need wins to have a fighting chance in the Currie Cup.
South African Super Rugby teams the Stormers and the Bulls have both made "emergency" player signings early in the season.
The Sharks won the 2013 Currie Cup after a clash with Western Province at Newlands on Saturday afternoon.
WP and the Sharks have delivered the dream final for Currie Cup organisers, who appear only interested in short-term gain, writes Andy Capostagno.
A knockout at this stage, which cannot be ruled out, would force a rethink of the structure of the competition â€” again.
Free State Cheetahs coach Naka Drotske has included Springbok prop Trevor Nyakane for the team's first Currie Cup home game against the Sharks.
The Super 15 rugby trophy has been marked with synthetic DNA which can be traced in 26 countries, it has been reported.
Despite some odd choices, Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer has chosen a squad that can win all three matches, writes Andy Capostagno.
Western Province have a lot to prove when they play the Sharks in a competition that promises better things to come, writes Andy Capostagno.
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The Currie Cup has produced a three-month competition involving just six teams and, as a result, every match is important.
The Lions have been dealt a harsh blow with news that two of their key players will be unavailable for the next two weeks because of Springbok duty.
It is what many have been arguing for since the end of isolation: strength versus strength in the Currie Cup.
The Lions ended a 12-year wait for a Currie Cup title on Saturday, beating the defending champion Sharks 42-16 at Ellis Park.
Western Province coach Allister Coetzee is wondering whether he'll have a full squad for the side's Currie Cup outing against the Sharks on Saturday.
Sharks coach John Plumtree says the battle for the top four Currie Cup positions is still wide open, and the round robin will have several twists.