Highlanders wary of Stormers' attacking threat

Tue, 25 Apr 2017 08:31
Large mark hammett highlanders 2017 800

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Highlanders assistant coach Mark Hammett is wary of the Stormers' attacking threat ahead of their clash in Dunedin on Friday.

The Cape side went down 24-57 to the Crusaders last weekend, but Hammett said his side are not paying too much attention to that clash.

"They [Stormers] turned some ball over where they normally wouldn't particularly inside the Crusaders' 22m so it probably could have been a different sort of game," Hammett told allblacks.com. "They got a couple of intercept tries, the Crusaders, so we're not looking so much at that game but more at what they've done in the past.

"They've been very strong, they're a dominant, hard-carrying team and they are a team that maybe slightly different from some of the African teams as they really try and attack hard out of their 22 at times."

The match against the Stormers will be the first of three against South African opposition for the Highlanders. After this weekend's clash, the Highlanders travel to South Africa to take on the Cheetahs and the Bulls.

It will be interesting to see if the Dunedin-based will tweak their game for the South African sides.

"We have plans around that, we like to run a lot so we've got to do it at the right places at the right time," Hammett said.

Meanwhile, Elliot Dixon could return to action against the Stormers this weekend.

The loose forward was in hospital with a leg infection, with Dillon Hunt taking his chance and was proving to be one of the success stories of the year for the side.

"He's [Hunt] been playing outstandingly well and he just improves week on week," said Hammett. "He was thrust into a pretty hard position of not only playing the seven role we had him in an unfamiliar role in the lineout as well and I thought he handled that pretty well."

Source: allblacks.com

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Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 13h30 London
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Lions v Kings 12h30 Ellis Park Stadium
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South Africa U20 v France U20 09h30 Tbilisi
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Reds 11 3 0 8 16
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Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 12 12 0 0 54
Hurricanes 11 9 0 2 43
Chiefs 11 9 0 2 43
Highlanders 12 9 0 3 41
Blues 12 6 0 6 31
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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
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Lions 12 11 0 1 51
Sharks 12 8 1 3 38
Jaguares 11 5 0 6 24
Kings 11 4 0 7 19