Stormers banking on skilful loosies

Wed, 15 May 2013 20:05
Large deon fourie stormers pass Large siya kolisi stormers train Large deon fourie stormers Large nizaam carr stormers

The Stormers may have lost some serious muscle, which means they will be banking on brains more than brawn this week.

The Stormers may have lost some serious muscle, which means they will be banking on brains more than brawn this week.

Stormers coach Allister Coetzee is hoping that a new-look loose trio will kick-start his team's bid for victory in Friday's Super Rugby clash against the Rebels in Melbourne.

The loss of bruising forwards Rynhardt Elstadt and Duane Vermeulen - both with knee injuries - means the look loose forward combination will bring a very different skillset to the game.

Regular hooker Deon Fourie will move from the front row to the back row (No.6), with Siya Kolisi shifting to the other side of the scrum and Nizaam Carr packing down at No.8.

"This is quite a good and exciting team and we're looking forward to seeing how they perform on Friday," said Coetzee from Sydney on Wednesday, after announcing a team showing seven changes (two of them positional) from last week.

"We've lost two loose forwards - including a No.8 - and we all know that Deon [Fourie] has done the job for us there before and he's been very successful there [at Currie Cup level]. Hopefully he can do the job for us at Super Rugby level too."

In terms of Kolisi's role, which sees him move across from openside to blindside, Coetzee explained: "Siya has done the job for us well at No.6 for us since Schalk Burger's injury last year. But we all know that he's a good ball-carrier, so hopefully he can fill that role for us this weekend.

"A big part of a No.7's job is to carry [the ball]. I'm excited about him playing there, but I don't think it's a massive difference [or change] for Siya. He's done well for us at No.6, but this is a great opportunity to see how he goes at 7.

"Nizaam has been good off the bench, but this is a good opportunity for him to stake a claim for a starting spot at No.8. He's been training well, he deserves this chance, and this is a great opportunity for him."

With a new-look loose trio and front row set to front up against the Rebels, there will also be a brand new halfback pairing with Louis Schreuder starting his first match this season alongside Springbok Elton Jantjies, who replaces Gary van Aswegen as the starting flyhalf.

"Louis hasn't had an opportunity to start yet [this season]. Groomie [Nic Groom] has started, Dewies [Dewaldt Duvenage] has started... maybe Louis can bring something different to the team. He's been training well - it's also a great opportunity for him and I know he's very excited about starting.

"We're not suddenly going to change the way we play - you have to be part of the squad to understand the momentum we build at training. We've spoken all year about having three good scrumhalves at our disposal, but you cannot leave a guy out if he's playing well... yet the others also need a starting opportunity.

"The big responsibility of Louis and Elton is to direct play for us this weekend and to make good decisions in terms of where we want to play and to use the opportunities that we get."

The Stormers currently have six points from three matches on tour and a win over the Rebels could see him finish their four-match tour with either 10 or 11 points.

For Coetzee, however, Friday has nothing to do with four-try bonus points or potential permutations - he has one thing only on his mind; victory.

"We're just looking at this one [this weekend]. We've lost two games in a row now, so we're just looking to come away with a win," said the Stormers boss.

"Winning a conference or talking about play-off chances is looking too far ahead. It's all about this weekend - getting the points and getting back to winning ways again."

Meanwhile, skipper Jean de Villiers has stressed that the team - himself included - needs to cut out their errors and back up what their coaches have been saying all season long.

"We've had two narrow losses now - two games we could've won, but didn't... more than anything we need to win this game on Friday," said De Villiers. "The injuries don't help, but that's all part of this game... we just need to adapt and play better rugby."

When asked about how they could "play better rugby", the Stormers' star centre added: "For us, it's just [about] holding onto the ball. We have addressed it once again this week - it's something we've been poor at, myself included.

"The individual errors we've been making are not acceptable at this level. The coaching staff have done more than enough to put structures in place and give us an effective gameplan, but we, as players, need to go and execute it and hold onto the ball.

"I think our defence was solid [against the Waratahs], even though we did concede two tries, and we created chances for ourselves, which, of course, we did not take. [The improvement] is something that has to come from within, but, first and foremost, we need to cut down on our errors."

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Sat, 02 July 2016
Sunwolves v Waratahs 05h15 Tokyo
Hurricanes v Blues 07h35 Wellington
Rebels v Stormers 09h40 Melbourne
Free State Cheetahs v Falcons 10h05 Bloemfontein
Golden Lions v Griffons 12h05 Johannesburg
Namibia v Border 13h00 Windhoek
Cheetahs v Force 13h00 Bloemfontein
Western Province v Eagles 13h00 Newlands
EP Kings v Griquas 14h00 Port Elizabeth
Lions v Sharks 15h10 Johannesburg
Kings v Highlanders 17h15 Port Elizabeth
Jaguares v Bulls 21h40 Buenos Aires
Thu, 07 July 2016
Griquas v Pumas 17h00 Kimberley
Fri, 08 July 2016
Blues v Brumbies 07h35 Auckland
Reds v Chiefs 09h40 Brisbane
Eagles v Free State Cheetahs 17h00 Outeniqua Park
Lions v Kings 17h00 Johannesburg
Sat, 09 July 2016
Jaguares v Highlanders 22h00 Buenos Aires
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Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 13 9 0 4 39
Waratahs 12 7 0 5 34
Rebels 12 6 0 6 27
Reds 13 3 1 9 16
Force 12 2 0 10 12
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Chiefs 13 10 0 3 46
Crusaders 13 10 0 3 45
Hurricanes 12 8 0 4 40
Highlanders 12 8 0 4 38
Blues 12 6 1 5 30
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 12 7 1 4 36
Bulls 12 7 1 4 32
Cheetahs 12 3 0 9 17
Sunwolves 12 1 1 10 9
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 12 9 0 3 42
Sharks 12 7 1 4 35
Jaguares 12 2 0 10 14
Kings 12 2 0 10 9