Director of Rugby Gary old expressed his disappoint at the Sharks result against the Sunwolves at Kings Park on Saturday.
The Durban-based franchise needed a win against the lowly Sunwolves to secure their place in the quarter-finals of the competition.
While they ran in six tries of their own, they were denied a bonus point win as they conceded a late fourth try from the visitors, taking the score to a not so flattering 40-29.
An eleven point win over the tournaments holder of the wooden spoon did not sit well with Gold.
"I am disappointed with the performance," he told the Sharks official website.
"It was one of those games where you were damned if you do and damned if you don't: if you win by 50 points, people will say that the opposition was poor, and if you’re in a scrap like we were, then it wasn't good enough.
"But, by our own high standards, there are no excuses at all, we could have and should have been a lot better than that.
"Under the circumstances, it was a potential banana skin match and the guys stuck in there in the second half against a team that had nothing to lose. I think the Sunwolves are pretty well coached, they play a good brand of rugby and they're never going to go away."
On a brighter note, Gold added that the mood around the camp is not all negative, as they have a playoff spot to celebrate and a quarter-final to prepare for in Wellington against the table topping Hurricanes.
"We're in a quarter-final now, it's not all doom and gloom," added Gold.
"We didn't play brilliantly, it was always going to be a difficult fixture against a team playing for pride and nothing to lose and we have to be honest with ourselves, we should be better than that. But we have another opportunity this week and a chance to right the wrongs."