CAPE TOWN – One of the things Stormers head coach John Dobson was most pleased with after their 39-6 Super Rugby Unlocked win against Griquas was the “energy” the new guys took to Kimberley.
After a tough start to their campaign, the Stormers ticked one of the boxes that they hadn’t been able to over the last few weeks – getting rhythm on attack.
They scored six tries – all of them very, very easy on the eye – and created good opportunities for their outside backs (although a number of those chances weren’t converted to points), which was another positive as their exciting wings have often been left out in the cold out wide with little chance to touch the Gilbert.
But this past weekend was different.
The interplay between the backs and forwards was good, and there was no shortage of quality productions from individuals.
Fullback Warrick Gelant was an absolute star on attack with a couple of direct try-assists and the way he helped bring their other backs into the mix.
The centre pairing of Dan du Plessis and Rikus Pretorius fired properly for the first time in the competition (and they made up for whatever they failed to deliver in previous outings), scrumhalf Paul de Wet had a top one, Angelo Davids – who wreaked havoc during the Under-21 competition with his unquenchable thirst for tries – again showed he is one for the future and tighthead prop Neethling Fouche also delivered.
“I thought a lot of the new guys, like David Meihuizen, Marcel Theunissen, Angelo Davids and Paul de Wet brought the energy that we expected of them, and the team overall brought a lot of energy and character,” Dobson said on the contribution of the new guys.
“We were still chasing kicks very hard at the end and put pressure on the opposition, so that was very pleasing.”
Former Varsity Cup star, Edwill van der Merwe spent around one minute on the field before he went off with an injury Dobson said could keep him out for a while.
“It was obviously a bit of a blow to lose Edwill van der Merwe in the first minute, he would have enjoyed a game like that,” Dobson said.
“Injury wise, Edwill will be out for a while and there’s a concern around David Meihuizen, but we’ll have him scanned and see what he looks like. For the rest we’re all good.”