The Stormers name their team to play the Blues
Tighthead prop Wilco Louw and lock Chris van Zyl are part of the kitchen sink the Stormers are planning to throw at the Blues at Newlands on Saturday.
The Stormers have a bye next week and they are desperate to finish their first phase of the tournament with an unblemished record after five rounds.
Louw and Van Zyl’s inclusion at the expense of Frans Malherbe and Salmaan Moerat respectively‚ are rotational switches.
Potential debutant Kwenzo Blose counts among the replacement props‚ while utility forward Cobus Wiese is the other change on the bench that again features a six-two split.
Dobson says the Stormers “are going to pour absolutely everything into getting the result and making it five consecutive wins.”
They are the only unbeaten side in Super Rugby and the coach wants to rack up the log points before their challenging tour that will include stops at the Crusaders‚ the Chiefs‚ the Brumbies as well as an increasingly uncertain fixture against the Sunwolves.
First though‚ they have to negotiate a capricious Blues team with their tails up after winning at Loftus Versfeld last Saturday.
“This game has all the makings of a classic South African-New Zealand battle‚ in front of the Newlands faithful. We have made some rotational changes up front‚ but otherwise we have managed to keep some good continuity as we look to keep building and raising our standards‚” said Dobson.
Interestingly‚ the Blues have opted to prepare in Johannesburg for the Newlands clash. The hot conditions as well as Johannesburg’s thin air would have served them well on the training pitch in preparation for the clash.
Coach Leon MacDonald has given All Blacks wing Rieko Ioane his wish and will unleash him at centre on Saturday.
Ioane’s inclusion is one of six changes to the team that triumphed at Loftus. He will be partnered in midfield by TJ Faiane‚ while Joe Marchant moves to the right wing.
Sam Nock comes in for Jonathan Ruru at scrumhalf‚ while in the pack Kurt Eklund replaces the injured James Parsons at hooker. Dalton Papilii slots in at openside flank for Tony Lamborn.
Stormers – Dillyn Leyds; Sergeal Petersen‚ Ruhan Nel‚ Jamie Roberts‚ Seabelo Senatla; Damian Willemse‚ Herschel Jantjies; Juarno Augustus‚ Pieter-Steph du Toit‚ Jaco Coetzee; JD Schickerling‚ Chris van Zyl; Wilco Louw‚ Scarra Ntubeni‚ Steven Kitshoff (captain).
Substitutes: Chad Solomon‚ Kwenzo Blose‚ Frans Malherbe‚ Salmaan Moerat‚ Cobus Wiese‚ Ernst van Rhyn; Godlen Masimla‚ Jean-Luc du Plessis.
Blues – Stephen Perofeta‚ Joe Marchant‚ Rieko Ioane‚ TJ Faiane‚ Mark Telea‚ Otere Black‚ Sam Nock; Hoskins Sotutu‚ Dalton Papalii‚ Tom Robinson‚ Jacob Pierce‚ Patrick Tuipulotu (capt)‚ Sione Mafileo‚ Kurt Eklund‚ Karl Tu’inukuafe.
Substitutes: Luteru Tolai‚ Marcel Renata‚ Ofa Tuungafasi‚ Aaron Carroll‚ Blake Gibson‚ Jonathan Ruru‚ Harry Plummer‚ Matt Duffie.
Source: TMG Digital.