Rennie's master plan sinks Stormers

Sun, 24 Jul 2016 10:43
Large chiefs players celebrate 800

REACTION: Chiefs coach Dave Rennie smiled like a Cheshire cat after his master plan came to fruition as his side romped to a 60-21 victory over the Stormers in their quarterfinal encounter at Newlands on Saturday.

Rennie played his cards close to his chest in the lead up to the encounter and rightly so, as the plan saw them nullify the Stormers' setpiece strengths. That, combined with a high tempo game, saw the Chiefs force the home side into submission.

"We were wary before the game that we needed to play quick because you have monsters over here [sic]. A lot of the things we wanted to put on the park we did. We certainly wanted to play at a tempo that would challenge them.

"We were pretty clinical when we got our opportunities. I don't want to be negative about how they [Stormers] defended, but we just played at a tempo, kept the ball alive, did the obvious things really well and put them under a lot of pressure. I think the key was just hanging onto the ball and building pressure. We did that pretty well in the first half and in the last 15 minutes.

"I thought our support play was exceptional and it has been a strength [of ours] throughout the year. We created a lot of opportunities against the Highlanders and were unable to complete it but the support play and decision making was on point [against the Stormers]," Rennie said.

The Chiefs' coach added that he was relieved to get over the quarterfinal hurdle after being knocked out at this stage in the recent past.

"We have been knocked out at this stage for the last couple of years, so it's nice to still be in the race. You need guys to provide energy and get us home, invariably you use all 23 guys and we will need to dig a little deeper into our squad [for the semifinal], so we are happy with the impact they gave off the bench," he added.

The Chiefs now head back to New Zealand shores for a semifinal encounter against the Hurricanes in Wellington - a side they have already beaten at that venue.

"We played in Wellington earlier in the year and won 28-27 but they [Hurricanes] are a better side now than what they were [at that stage]. It's going to be another big challenge but we back ourselves to perform well.

"We've never worried about travelling, so we were happy to come out here and, as you can see, our boys are full of beans [sic]. Maybe we will be travelling somewhere else, maybe Dunedin or Johannesburg [if victory against the Hurricanes is achieved]," he stated.

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Fri, 30 September 2016
Golden Lions v Sharks 15h00 Johannesburg
EP Kings v Pumas 16h00 Nelspruit
Western Province v Boland 17h10 Cape Town
Dragons v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 Rodney Parade
Connacht v Edinburgh 18h35 Sportsground
Northampton Saints v Exeter Chiefs 18h45 Franklin's Gardens
Bristol v Saracens 18h45 Ashton Gate
Sat, 01 October 2016
Free State Cheetahs v Griquas 12h00 Bloemfontein
Sale Sharks v Leicester Tigers 13h30 AJ Bell Stadium
Gloucester v Bath 14h00 Kingsholm
South Africa v Australia 15h05 Loftus Versfeld
Munster v Zebre 16h00 Thomond Park
Ulster v Ospreys 17h30 Kingspan Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Leinster 18h35 BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park
Cardiff Blues v Cardiff Blues 19h05 Stadio Monigo
Sun, 02 October 2016
Argentina v New Zealand 22h10 Ascoli Piceno
Wasps v Harlequins 13h30 Ricoh Arena
Worcester Warriors v Newcastle Falcons 14h00 Sixways
Tue, 04 October 2016
Edinburgh v Ulster 19h35 BT Murrayfield
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 15 10 0 5 43
Waratahs 15 8 0 7 40
Rebels 15 7 0 8 31
Reds 15 3 1 11 17
Force 15 2 0 13 13
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Hurricanes 15 11 0 4 53
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 52
Chiefs 15 11 0 4 51
Crusaders 15 11 0 4 50
Blues 15 8 1 6 39
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 15 10 1 4 51
Bulls 15 9 1 5 42
Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Sunwolves 15 1 1 13 9
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 14 11 0 3 52
Sharks 15 9 1 5 43
Jaguares 14 3 0 11 18
Kings 15 2 0 13 9