Stormers debut for Basson

Thu, 09 Mar 2017 12:23
Large bjorn basson bulls training 800

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Bjorn Basson is set to make his debut for the Stormers after being named in the starting XV to face the Kings in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.

Basson will replace Cheslyn Kolbe, who sustained an ankle injury during the match against the Jaguares last week in Cape Town.

Lock Eben Etzebeth will lead the side at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in the absence of regular captain Siya Kolisi who is being rested for this match.

There are two changes in the front row, with props Oli Kebble and Frans Malherbe making their first starts of the season on either side of hooker Bongi Mbonambi.

Kolisi’s place at flank is taken by Sikhumbuzo Notshe, with Nizaam Carr back in the starting XV at No.8.

In the backline Dewaldt Duvenage will form a halfback partnership with Robert du Preez, with Jano Vermaak being rested and Jean-Luc du Plessis ruled out through injury.

Centre Dan du Plessis will make his first appearance of the season in place of the injured Dan Kriel.

There are also three potential Super Rugby debutants on the replacements bench, with loose forward Jaco Coetzee, scrumhalf Justin Phillips and utility back Damian Willemse all in line to earn their first Stormers cap.

Stormers head coach Robbie Fleck said that his team is focused on building on the two victories that they have earned this season.

"This will be our first away game of the campaign after two good wins at Newlands and we would like to see further improvements in our game this weekend.

"We always get great support as a team in Port Elizabeth, so we are looking forward to the challenge on Saturday," he said.

Stormers: 15 SP Marais, 14 Dillyn Leyds, 13 EW Viljoen, 12 Dan du Plessis, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Dewaldt Duvenage, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 6 Rynhardt Elstadt, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Eben Etzebeth (captain), 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Oli Kebble.
Replacements: 16 Ramone Samuels, 17 JC Janse van Rensburg, 18 Wilco Louw, 19 Chris Van Zyl, 20 Jaco Coetzee, 21 Justin Phillips, 22 Kurt Coleman, 23 Damian Willemse.

Date: Saturday, March 11
Venue: Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth
Kick-off: 15.05 (13.05 GMT)
Referee: Shuhei Kubo (Japan)
Assistant referees: AJ Jacobs (South Africa), Cwengile Jadezweni (South Africa)
TMO: Shaun Veldsman (South Africa)

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