Stormers making real strides

Sun, 04 May 2014 16:01
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Stormers coach Allister Coetzee was full of praise for the attacking intent his team showed in their bonus-point win against the Highlanders.

Stormers coach Allister Coetzee was full of praise for the attacking intent his team showed in their bonus-point win against the Highlanders.

Since hitting the bottom of the log earlier in the season the Stormers have been talking about trying to play a more balanced game with more attacking intent, and they backed that up at Newlands on Saturday with an encouraging performance.

Although their defence was exposed at times as the Highlanders ran in four tries of their own, Coetzee was pleased with the way the team embraced their new approach, as they held on to the ball and ran it at the Highlanders whilst also enjoying a big territorial advantage.

"Against any New Zealand side you have got to pitch up with massive intensity, physicality and work rate and we showed that both on attack and defence.

"There has been a massive improvement in our transition from defence to attack, that was much better than last week.

"The players made that step up in terms of backing what we are doing, some people might say we are sitting between two chairs by going for more attacking intent, then when you make a couple of mistakes you get into that fear of losing thing," he said.

The Stormers coach said that the decision to adapt their approach from the ultra-defensive mindset of the past few years was made to suit the exciting young players coming through the ranks.

"The big thing is that you look at the players that you sit with in the team and the culture that they want. There are a lot of young players coming into the system and there is a different feel.

"The other thing is that if you don't have the personel to be confrontational at all costs with accurate kicking then surely you can't play that game.

"Our biggest thing was always a balance, there is no one way that you can play this game and be successful but I think the best way is to accomodate everyone.

"Like a player like Cheslin Kolbe who has got the feet to step, are you going to use him for kick-chase and contests in the air, you need to give him the ball in some space so his running skills can come out," he said.

He added that although making the change had been somewhat daunting, it was particularly gratifying to see his side take the game to a dangerous team like the Highlanders.

"Change always brings fear in itself, but you will never know until you do it and I think it has changed for the better definitely.

"What do players chat about after a game? They chat about the exciting things, about how I put you away in that half-gap or how we double-tackled someone.

"We want to score tries, that is what the people want to see here at Newlands and we have got the athletes who are exciting runners and steppers so I think it is the right thing to do," he said.

However, Coetzee acknowledged that there is still plenty of room for improvement, having wasted a few good attacking opportunities and getting exposed by some clever grubbers behind their defensive line.

"If you look at how their tries were scored I thought it was clever play from them to put it in behind, there is nothing much you can do defensively even if you have a good solid line to cover all the holes," he said.

By Michael de Vries
 

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sat, 27 May 2017
Sunwolves v Cheetahs 05h15 Tokyo
Highlanders v Waratahs 07h35 Dunedin
Rebels v Crusaders 09h45 Melbourne
Bulls v Hurricanes 13h05 Loftus Versfeld
Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 13h30 London
Sharks v Stormers 15h15 Kings Park
Munster v Scarlets 17h15 Dublin
Jaguares v Brumbies 21h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 28 May 2017
Lions v Kings 12h30 Ellis Park Stadium
Wed, 31 May 2017
New Zealand U20 v Scotland U20 07h00 AIA Arena
England U20 v Samoa U20 07h00 Tbilisi
South Africa U20 v France U20 09h30 Tbilisi
Ireland U20 v Italy U20 09h30 AIA Arena
Argentina U20 v Georgia U20 12h00 Tbilisi
Australia U20 v Wales U20 14h30 Tbilisi
Fri, 02 June 2017
Blues v Reds 07h35 Auckland
RESULT SCORE
Fri, 26 May 2017
Reds v Force 26 | 40
Blues v Chiefs 16 | 16
Sun, 21 May 2017
Waratahs v Rebels 50 | 23
Sat, 20 May 2017
Kings v Brumbies 10 | 19
Munster v Ospreys 23 | 3
Wasps v Leicester Tigers 21 | 20
Lions v Bulls 51 | 14
Exeter Chiefs v Saracens 18 | 16
Sunwolves v Sharks 17 | 38
Force v Highlanders 6 | 55
Hurricanes v Cheetahs 61 | 7
Fri, 19 May 2017
Leinster v Scarlets 15 | 27
Stormers v Blues 30 | 22
Chiefs v Crusaders 24 | 31
Sat, 13 May 2017
Jaguares v Force 6 | 16
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 11 4 0 7 23
Waratahs 11 4 0 7 19
Force 12 4 0 8 17
Reds 12 3 0 9 16
Rebels 11 1 1 9 8
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 12 12 0 0 54
Chiefs 12 9 1 2 45
Hurricanes 11 9 0 2 43
Highlanders 12 9 0 3 41
Blues 13 6 1 6 33
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 11 7 0 4 30
Bulls 11 3 0 8 15
Cheetahs 12 2 0 10 11
Sunwolves 11 1 0 10 7
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 12 11 0 1 51
Sharks 12 8 1 3 38
Jaguares 11 5 0 6 24
Kings 11 4 0 7 19