Stormers want a 'dogfight' ahead of quarterfinals

Tue, 11 Jul 2017 09:00

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: The Stormers are expecting the Bulls to provide them with a stern challenge ahead of the Super Rugby play-offs, which gets underway next weekend. Warren Fortune reports.

The Stormers meet their old foes at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday ahead of a quarterfinal against either the Hurricanes or Chiefs at Newlands the following week.

After an unimpressive 52-15 win against the Sunwolves, the Cape side are looking to put in a more cohesive performance in Pretoria against a Bulls side that has failed to deliver on the field of play in this year's competition. 

"We know the Bulls are going to be a proper challenge for us and it is going to be there last game at Loftus," said Stormers assistant coach Russell Winter.

"It's typical old derby going up there and we expect nothing less than an absolute dogfight and to be honest it is what we want. 

"We want to go up there and we want to prep ourselves. I don't want to say it is dress rehearsal, but we want to prep ourselves properly and we want to make sure that we are not complacent. 

"We put all the things that we need together for our quarterfinal and there is no one better to play than the Bulls at Loftus.

"On the day, they can beat anybody. We are looking forward to that challenge. It's going to be one that is going to be properly fought up front...I can guarantee that."

Meanwhile, Stormers centre EW Viljoen is relishing the opportunity to test himself against Springboks Jesse Kriel and Jan Serfontein in the midfield.  

"It is something I am looking forward to," said Viljoen.

"I am going to approach this game just like I have approached the other games throughout the competition. But, I am definitely looking forward to playing against Jesse and Jan if they are playing. 

"I got lots of respect for them. They are some of the best centres in the world and it is something to look forward to."

With Juan de Jongh back to full fitness and Huw Jones set to be available next week, Viljoen might have a battle on his hands to be first choice in his position come play-off time.

"I definitely want to be first choice. It is something I am personally working on.

"But there is always stuff in my game that I can work on...There is always stuff you have to work on and definitely I am working on a lot of stuff to get my game on point and to be the best that I can be for the team," Viljoen added.

By Warren Fortune

There are currently no matches being played
Fri, 18 August 2017
Western Province v Golden Lions 17h00 Newlands
Sat, 19 August 2017
Australia v New Zealand 10h00 ANZ Stadium
Blue Bulls v Free State Cheetahs 12h05 Loftus Versfeld
South Africa v Argentina 15h05 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Sun, 20 August 2017
Griquas v Pumas 12h30 Kimberley
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