'Flat' Stormers aim for good tour

Sun, 16 Apr 2017 10:41

REACTION: The Stormers are looking to pick up the pieces as they head out on a three-match New Zealand tour on Sunday.

An obviously disappointed Stormers coach Robbie Fleck admitted the 16-29 loss to the Lions - which was the Lions' first-ever Super Rugby win at Newlands and brought the Stormers' victory run to an end - is not ideal ahead of a tough tour.

The Stormers, who depart for New Zealand on Sunday, will face the Crusaders (in Christchurch next Saturday), the Highlanders (Dunedin) and Hurricanes (Wellington) on the subsequent Fridays.

It is the harsh lessons learnt from the loss against the Lions that will stand them in good stead.

He admitted they were "outplayed" by the Lions at Newlands.

"We were a little bit flat, especially in terms of the tempo and intensity that we played with [against the Chiefs] last week," Fleck said.

He said the past week's preparations were "a bit disrupted".

"We struggled to get going with our training on Monday and Tuesday," the Stormers mentor said, adding: "We had a good training session on Tuesday."

He felt the team had an opportunity during the early stages of the second half first - after trailing 13-22 at the break - to regain control of the match.

However, the Lions - through some magnificent defence - held the Stormers out and took control in the final quarter.

"We should have scored, but credit to the Lions - their defence was outstanding," Fleck said.

"If we had scored there, then maybe we would have kicked on a bit."

Captain Siya Kolisi dismissed the notion that they erred during that crucial period early in the second half by constantly going for line-outs, instead of taking penalties.

"We felt that if we got a try, it would shift the momentum," Kolisi said.

"We felt we had a lot of energy, but they defended very well.

"Yes, we could have gone for the three points, but we all wanted to go for a try to change the momentum.

"The Lions played very well and shut down everything we attempted."

Fleck said his team needs to take the loss on the chin and look forward to a good tour.

"Last year the Lions were able to back up those kind of performances week in and week out.

"That was our challenge this week, to back up last week's performance and we didn't.

"We have to work hard and come back," Fleck said, adding: "It is not ideal to lose before you go on tour.

"Now we have to look forward to a tour in New Zealand that is not going to be easy," he said of a trip that starts against the unbeaten Crusaders.

"This is the toughest competition around, if you take into consideration the travel and who the opposition is.

"We are looking forward to playing against an unbeaten team - we have never won in Christchurch.

"It is a new challenge for us."

By Jan de Koning at Newlands
@king365ed
@rugby365com

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 22 September 2017
Free State Cheetahs v Pumas 15h30 Bloemfontein
Cheetahs v Leinster 18h00 Bloemfontein
Glasgow Warriors v Munster 18h35 Scotstoun Stadium
Ulster v Dragons 18h35 Kingspan Stadium
Gloucester v Worcester Warriors 18h45 Kingsholm
Treviso v Ospreys 19h35 Stadio Monigo
Sat, 23 September 2017
Sharks v Blue Bulls 13h00 Durban
Bath v Newcastle Falcons 14h00 Recreation Ground
Harlequins v Leicester Tigers 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Saracens v Sale Sharks 14h00 Allianz Park
Connacht v Cardiff Blues 14h15 Sportsground
Western Province v Griquas 15h15 Newlands
Kings v Zebre 17h35 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Scarlets v Edinburgh 18h35 Parc y Scarlets
Sun, 24 September 2017
London Irish v Northampton Saints 13h00 Madejski Stadium
Exeter Chiefs v Wasps 14h00 Sandy Park
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 15 6 0 9 34
Force 15 6 0 9 26
Reds 15 4 0 11 21
Waratahs 15 4 0 11 19
Rebels 15 1 1 13 9
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 15 14 0 1 63
Hurricanes 15 12 0 3 58
Chiefs 15 12 1 2 57
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 51
Blues 15 7 1 7 37
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 15 10 0 5 43
Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Bulls 15 4 0 11 20
Sunwolves 15 2 0 13 12
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 15 14 0 1 65
Sharks 15 9 1 5 42
Jaguares 15 7 0 8 33
Kings 15 6 0 9 28