Injuries trip up victorious Stormers

Sun, 12 Feb 2017 09:51
Large leolin zas stormers injured 800

REACTION: The Stormers have completed their pre-season with a third successive win, but it has come at a dear price.

Coach Robbie Fleck confirmed that captain Juan de Jongh and flyer Leolin Zass will miss the start of the season, after suffering devastating injuries in their impressive 57-40 demolition of the Lions at Newlands at the weekend.

Speaking in the immediate aftermath after their nine-try demolition of the Lions, Fleck said it is suspected Zass fractured his lower leg - both his tibia and fibula.

However, he was still awaiting formal confirmation, as the young player went to the hospital for X-rays on Satur5day night.

De Jongh, who was the run-on captain for the Newlands outing and was part of the season's core leadership group, might be sidelined for six weeks or more.

He suffered a suspected grade two level injury of his medial collateral ligament.

Fleck said he would wait for the results from the medical staff, but admitted he is not expecting the Springbok midfielder to return soon.

"It is a horrible blow for us," the coach said.

"Leolin was really looking forward to this season and he's just come back from an injury.

"He is very distraught.

"And Juan is also not good.

"I will leave it to the medical staff to make their assessments, but it looks like he's going to be out for several weeks also."

This double injury blow follows a number of pre-season injury setbacks.

Flank Marnus Schoeman, on loan from the Pumas, was ruled out of the weekend's outing after he suffered a concussion in training last week.

Schoeman, who was originally in the Cape side's plans for the match last Saturday, was brought in to plug the gap left by the injury to Lions signing Stephan de Wit.

De Wit, who broke his ankle in training during the pre-season, was seen as a solution to the Stormers' problems in the openside flank role.

And they still have an injury hangover from last year, with hooker Scarra Ntubeni still busy with rehabilitation from the surgery he underwent late last year to repair a torn Achilles tendon. He is not expected to feature in this year's competition at all.

Fleck revealed that the Bulls' Springbok capped wing Bjorn Basson has signed to play for the Stormers this year.

While there has been no official announcement as yet, Basson was at Newlands on Saturday.

Utility back Joe Pietersen, who had a stint with Biarritz in France after leaving the Stormers and then also played for the Cheetahs and Sharks, has also started training with the Stormers again.

However, he will be used in a mentoring role and only called upon if absolutely necessary.

Fleck described the win over the Lions as an "overall pleasing performance".

"We achieved some of the goals we set out to do," he told a media gathering, adding: "After the pre-season games we can say we are happy at the moment."

However, he felt that they still lots of room for improvement ahead of their season opener against the Bulls at Newlands on February 25.

By Jan de Koning at Newlands
@king365ed
@rugby365com

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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