Pat Lambie's boot sinks the Highlanders
A 28-point haul from Sharks first five Pat Lambie has seen the home team head off the Highlanders 28-12 in Durban.
Lambie scored all of his team's points with a faultless seven penalties and the conversion of his own try as the Sharks kicked on from a 15-9 lead at halftime to clinch a much-needed win for the South African team.
The Highlanders were hit hard by injuries during the game with loose forward Doug Tietjens (knee) and his replacement Elliot Dixon (shoulder) both failing to make it to halftime and Tamati Ellison also getting injured in the final stages of the game.
Despite dominating possession, the Highlanders were put under a lot of pressure in the scrum and lineout and were guilty of giving away the ball just when they had the Sharks stretched.
The Highlanders briefly took over the lead with half an hour to play when Kurt Baker was on the end of the last pass, but then Lambie's perfect game had the home team back in front before he sealed the game with a try in the 62nd minute when Hosea Gear failed to collect an innocuous looking bomb.
The poor discipline at the ruck which saw them have to come back from 30-9 against the Cheetahs last weekend was again a concern for the Highlanders who return home from South Africa midweek for a home game against the Hurricanes on Saturday.
SHARKS 28 (Patrick Lambie try, con, 7 pens). HIGHLANDERS 16 (Kurt Baker try, Mike Delany con, 3 pen)