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THEY have been almost gun-barrel straight with their goal-kicks this year and tomorrow at Newlands, Peter Grant and Elton Jantjies can put some extra heat on Morné Steyn as the Bulls man tries to cling on to his Springbok No10 jersey.
Steyn’s troubles with the boot and his general play in the 2-0 series win over England may put his Bok berth in jeopardy, and coach Heyneke Meyer has issued a challenge to Steyn to “get it right” in the remaining three Super Rugby league matches.
In the meantime, Jantjies, who sat on the bench in the final Test in Port Elizabeth, will get his chance to stake a claim for a Test spot at Newlands, where he will come up against a man who many feel is just the steadying hand that the Boks need at flyhalf.
Jantjies was unfortunate not to make his Test debut in the second half in PE, with Meyer deciding to persevere with Steyn despite the Bulls man being off his game. It nearly resulted in a defeat, and certainly cost them victory as Steyn missed three out of six goal-kicks in the 14-14 draw. Steyn struggled with his goal-kicking for most of the England series, slotting only 12 out of 22 in the three Tests.
Now the 21-year-old Jantjies will go out to show the Bok coach what he is made of. Circumstances can’t be tougher for the Lions, with coach John Mitchell suspended after the players complained about how he treats them. They are also second-from-bottom on the log.
Despite the Lions’ poor record of only two wins out of 13 this year, Jantjies has shone with his audacious playmaking skills, quick feet and consistent goal-kicking winning him a spot in the Bok squad. If the Lions forwards can secure good possession, Jantjies is the man who can trouble the star-studded Stormers backline. Grant makes few mistakes, throws a lovely long pass when the Stormers decide to play with width, attacks the gain-line by running hard at the opposition and is a solid defender.
Stormers starting XV: Joe Pietersen, Gio Aplon, Juan de Jongh, Jean de Villiers (capt), Gerhard van den Heever, Peter Grant, Dewaldt Duvenage, Siya Kolisi, Don Armand, Tyrone Holmes, Andries Bekker, De Kock Steenkamp, Frans Malherbe, Deon Fourie, Deon Carstens. Replacements: Tiaan Liebenberg, Brok Harris, Quinn Roux, Jebb Sinclair, Louis Schreuder, Burton Francis, Bryan Habana.