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Stormers want to blow Bulls away at fortress Loftus Versfeld

Stormers will be banking on co-captain Steven Kitshoff’s ability in the scrums and with ball in hand. Picture: Shaun Roy/BackpagePix

Stormers will be banking on co-captain Steven Kitshoff’s ability in the scrums and with ball in hand. Picture: Shaun Roy/BackpagePix

Published Jan 22, 2022

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Cape Town - The Bulls must be feeling pretty good about their chances against their rivals given the ‘Stormers Fan Syndrome’ banter they shared on social media yesterday, and their 40-21 humbling of Western Province on Wednesday would have just added to their high spirits.

ALSO READ: WATCH: Bulls banter about ‘Stormers Fan Syndrome’ ahead of Loftus showdown

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That Currie Cup thrashing isn’t much to go on, though - after all, it was a team of Province youngsters being bossed by a Bulls side packed with Springboks and experience. It was a United Rugby Championship team against a very green Currie Cup team.

Today, however, it will be a much more level playing field at Loftus.

The Stormers have their Boks back, and Steven Kitshoff and Salmaan Moerat will lead from the front as co-captains against the Bulls in their URC clash, with the Springbok front-rower Kitshoff set to make his first appearance in the competition in the North-South clash. Among the backs, Damian Willemse and scrumhalf Herschel who will start at fullback and scrum half respectively - Jantjies will also feature in the URC for the first time.

Up front, loose forwards Deon Fourie and Hacjivah Dayimani both make their return from injury. The duo both featured for Western Province in the Currie Cup opener against the Lions last week, with Fourie joining Evan Roos and Ernst van Rhyn in the loose trio and Dayimani set to bring some excitement and impact off the bench.

Moerat will link up with Springbok Marvin Orie in the second row, with Scarra Ntubeni and Sazi Sandi completing the front row alongside Kitshoff.

Stormers head coach John Dobson said that after the training they’ve put in, the guys are keen to go out there and show what they can do.

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It has been good to have this break and evaluate where we want to improve as a team, now it is about going out there and executing those plans accurately.

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“The players have trained well and everyone is very motivated to show what we are capable of up in Pretoria this weekend,” he said.

Dobson added that with two Springbok fullbacks in the squad, there is a plan to get the most out of both Willemse and Gelant going forward.

“We have two exceptional talents in Damian and Warrick and we have mapped out a way to make the most of that over the next few weeks, which is a crucial period for us. Both of them have bought in and are excited about making as big an impact as possible,” he said.

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Stormers

15 Damian Willemse 14 Sergeal Petersen 13 Ruhan Nel 12 Rikus Pretorius 11 Seabelo Senatla 10 Manie Libbok 9 Herschel Jantjies 8 Evan Roos 7 Ernst van Rhyn 6 Deon Fourie 5 Marvin Orie 4 Salmaan Moerat (co-captain) 3 Sazi Sandi 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Steven Kitshoff (co-captain).

Bench: 16 Andre-Hugo Venter 17 Leon Lyons 18 Brok Harris 19 Adre Smith 20 Hacjivah Dayimani 21 Paul de Wet 22 Dan du Plessis 23 Warrick Gelan

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