Leyds set for No.10 role against Blues?

Mon, 15 May 2017 16:12
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IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Dillyn Leyds could be wearing the Stormers' No.10 jersey when the Cape side take on the Blues at Newlands on Friday.

The Stormers are currently without flyhalves Robert du Preez, Jean-Luc du Plessis and Kurt Coleman because of injuries, while exciting talent Damian Willemse is also unavailable due to his commitments with the Junior Springboks, who are preparing for the World Rugby Under-20 Championships.

Leyds has been seen as a potential candidate for the flyhalf position for a number of seasons. However, he played most of his rugby as an outside back for Robbie Fleck in Super Rugby and for John Dobson in the Currie Cup.

Fleck will also have Joe Pietersen and Brandon Thomson available this week to play at flyhalf.

"Dillyn has done the job for us on tour and there is a good chance that we will look to play him there," Fleck told reporters at the team's base in Bellville.

He added: "A lot of us have been looking forward to seeing him [Leyds] play flyhalf.

"It has been a talking point for the last three or four years. For me, he is in the form of his life, but he has been playing on the wing and he has been playing certain games at the back [fullback].

"We need to make the decision if that is the best move for the team or for him because he is playing so well in those positions and if we take him out of one position, do we weaken that position or not?

"Those are all the things that we have to take into consideration, but certainly he is the one guy that is leading by example at the moment. He is a leader within the group. 

"He understands our game. He is an exciting prospect at 10. He is a danger - he is a danger with ball in hand and he takes the ball flat. He makes his tackles and he is a good organiser, so let us see how we go for the rest of the week.

"It is going to be an interesting selection. He is certainly not a fish out of water playing at 10.

"He played his whole schoolboy career at 10 - he is a playmaker and he gets involved in a lot of moves.

"He played the majority of the game against the Hurricanes at 10 and we got back to 22-all with him there, so we did not do too badly.

After losing their last four matches, the Stormers could have done without the disruption of losing Du Preez to injury (against the Hurricanes in Round 11). However, Fleck is confident with the depth in his squad fill that No.10 position.

"It is not easy, but at the end of the day, he [Leyds] has been with us the longest. 

"He has been running the show while we were on tour. He knows the patterns the best, he knows our structures and our systems the best and I will say the same for Joe [Pietersen].

"Joe has been training with us for the last three to four months and he has got a good understanding as well. 

"Thomson was over in Glasgow for a large part of this campaign and he has played the last couple of games for Dobbo [John Dobson], so it is quite an easy transition for him to come into the side as well and he has done it for us in the past.

"It is the situation that we are faced with at the moment. We have been hit hard by injuries and it is funny that it always happens in one position.

"There are certain skills that Dillyn brings that is quite unique to the table as a 10, but they all got their strengths and weaknesses and we are going to choose whoever is best suited to the way we want to play," said Fleck.

Meanwhile, the Stormers will have centres Damian de Allende and Juan de Jongh available for selection this week. 

Springbok Sevens star Seabelo Senatla is another who could also feature in Friday's matchday 23.

By Warren Fortune

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Fri, 25 May 2018
Crusaders v Hurricanes 07h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Sunwolves 09h45 Melbourne
Jaguares v Sharks 19h40 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
Sat, 26 May 2018
Chiefs v Waratahs 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Highlanders 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Bulls v Brumbies 13h05 Loftus Versfeld
Exeter Chiefs v Saracens 14h00 London
Stormers v Lions 15h15 Newlands
Leinster v Scarlets 17h00 Dublin
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Waratahs 11 6 1 4 31
Rebels 11 5 0 6 25
Reds 11 4 0 7 18
Brumbies 11 3 0 8 16
Sunwolves 11 0 9 10
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 12 10 0 2 46
Hurricanes 11 10 0 1 45
Highlanders 11 7 0 4 32
Chiefs 11 7 0 4 32
Blues 12 3 0 9 17
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 13 7 0 6 36
Jaguares 12 7 0 5 29
Sharks 12 5 1 6 28
Bulls 12 5 0 7 24
Stormers 13 5 0 8 23