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Kolisi in new Stormers role

Wed, 27 Jun 2012 11:10
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Siya Kolisi will be in a new role for the Stormers when they host the hapless Lions in Super Rugby action on Saturday.

Kolisi will start at No.8 in an all-new loose forward combination, with Don Armand and Tyrone Holmes on the flanks.

The changes have been necessitated by the absence of all of the team's leading loose forwards - Duane Vermeulen, Schalk Burger and Nick Koster (all injured), while Rynhardt Elstadt is serving a one-match ban and Nick Fenton-Wells has moved to Saracens.

Holmes will get his first Stormers cap in the No.6 jersey. Armand, who has already played four games for the Stormers this season from the bench, gets his first start.

Kolisi, who has been in sublime form for the Cape Town franchise, moves from flank to No.8.

Canadian import Jebb Sinclair, who has just returned from playing for his country in the June internationals, will provide cover from the bench.

Stormers coach Allister Coetzee explained that Kolisi was originally a No.8 at school, and added that he could prove a valuable asset at No.8 at the play-off stage of the competition when Sinclair is no longer eligible for selection.

He said: "Fortunately he has played No.8 at school for Grey PE, and as a footballer Siya is well suited for the position. He developed as a good ball-carrying seven, he did well there and then Schalk got injured so we moved him to six and he has done really well all season there and now at No.8.

"Should we get to the play-off stages a player like Jebb Sinclair would not qualify," added Coetzee.

The Stormers coach said that he is excited to see the impact that Armand, who has experience playing lock, can offer on the blindside flank.

"Don has been part of the whole campaign up until now, he joined us overseas so I am very comfortable. He is what we actually want - a big ball-carrying seven who is a good line-out option as well," he said.

Coetzee added that Holmes has forced his way into the frame through some convincing performances at club and Vodacom Cup level.

"Tyrone Holmes has done very well in the Vodacom Cup. He just did so well in club rugby and got called up and now here is his chance to play Super 15 so it is a good development.

Springbok second row ace Andries Bekker returns after a lower back injury ruled him out of the June Tests and he will be partnered by De Kock Steenkamp.

Another Bok, Eben Etzebeth, is struggling with an ankle injury and was not included in the matchday 22.

Leinster-bound Quinn Roux provides second row cover from the bench.

In the front row Junior Bok prop Steven Kitshoff is being rested, so veteran Deon Carstens continues at loosehead and at tighthead Frans Malherbe gets an opportunity to start ahead of Brok Harris.

Coetzee has picked Deon Fourie at hooker and he will also provide cover at blindside flank, as he has at times this season for the Cape side.

Stormers: 15 Joe Pietersen, 14 Gio Aplon, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Jean de Villiers (captain), 11 Gerhard van den Heever, 10 Peter Grant, 9 Dewaldt Duvenage, 8 Siya Kolisi, 7 Don Armand, 6 Tyrone Holmes, 5 Andries Bekker, 4 De Kock Steenkamp, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Deon Fourie, 1 Deon Carstens.
Replacements: 16 Tiaan Liebenberg, 17 Brok Harris, 18 Quinn Roux, 19 Jebb Sinclair, 20 Louis Schrueder, 21 Burton Francis, 22 Bryan Habana.

Date: Saturday, June 30
Venue: Newlands, Cape Town
Kick-off: 17.05 (15.05 GMT)
Referee: Mark Lawrence (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Francisco Pastrana (Argentina), Jason Jaftha (South Africa)
TMO: Gerrie Coetzee (South Africa)

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