Hooker Chad Solomon is set to make his long-awaited Stormers debut on Saturday. Photo: Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

The Stormers have suffered an injury blow ahead of their Super Rugby clash against the Highlanders, with Springbok hooker Bongi Mbonambi ruled out.

Mbonambi left the field during the first half of last week’s 19-19 draw with the Crusaders at Newlands, with Scarra Ntubeni replacing him.

Mbonambi sustained a quad injury, and has not recovered in time to face the Highlanders at Newlands this Saturday (3.05pm kickoff).

Ntubeni will wear the No 2 jersey, with WP hooker Chad Solomon – son of team manager Chippie – set to make his long-awaited Stormers debut off the bench.

Bok centre Damian de Allende has managed to shake off a bump to his leg to start at No 12, with Dan Kriel the centre back-up, with no place for the fit-again EW Viljoen as JJ Engelbrecht continues at No 13.

Wilco Louw comes on to the bench as the tighthead prop reserve, having been a late withdrawal in the Crusaders match, which saw Frans Malherbe at No 3.

Bok flank Pieter-Steph du Toit will celebrate his 50th cap for the Stormers.

“The atmosphere last week was incredible, and the players can’t wait to get out there again and play in front of our fans,” coach Robbie Fleck said on Thursday.

“We want to keep building and improving as we approach the end of the season..”

Stormers Team

15 Damian Willemse, 14 Seabelo Senatla, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Dillyn Leyds, 10 Josh Stander, 9 Herschel Jantjies, 8 Jaco Coetzee, 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Siya Kolisi (captain), 5 Cobus Wiese, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Steven Kitshoff.

Bench: 16 Chad Solomon, 17 Corné Fourie, 18 Wilco Louw, 19 Kobus van Dyk, 20 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 21 Justin Phillips, 22 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 23 Dan Kriel.

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