Chiefs happy at their 'home away from home'

Tue, 18 Jul 2017 15:33

QUARTERFINAL SPOTLIGHT: The significant support for the team and the fact that they come to Cape Tow often makes the Chiefs 'feel at home' at Newlands.

Chiefs coach Dave Rennie, speaking ahead of their Super Rugby play-off encounter with the Stormers at Newlands on Saturday, described Cape Town as their "home away from home".

Rennie pointed to their previous visits to Cape Town since he took over as Chiefs coach in 2012 - which have yielded two impressive victories, including a 60-21 demolition of the Stormers in last year's quarterfinal.

The Stormers avenged that with a 34-26 win in their Round Seven match in April this year.

But the Chiefs still enjoy visiting the Mother City.

"It is a beautiful place, Cape Town,"Rennie said, adding that they arrived early this time round - around midnight this past Sunday.

It afforded then a full week of preparation with no disruptions.

"We have been here a lot and it is pretty familiar to us," the Chiefs mentor said, adding: "Outside of New Zealand it is the ground we played most footy at.

"We also get a lot of support down here.

"We know it is going to be a massive occasion, as it was in Round Seven."

Rennie described the Stormers as a 'different beast' this year and said the Cape Town outfit was 'caught on the hop in last year's quarterfinal, because they only played Aussie teams in the league stages.

"They have played five Kiwi teams this year and will be better prepared."

Rennie spoke of his team's ability to 'front up in the big games'.

"The Hurricanes have smashed teams, but we beat them twice," he said.

"It is the ability to turn up when the pressure is on.

"That is what we need to do this time.

"We will need to look after the ball, because they have a lot of fire out back and a big pack."

By Jan de Koning

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