Frans Malherbe (right) isn't making a big deal of reaching a century at the Stormers. Photo: BackpagePix
Frans Malherbe (right) isn't making a big deal of reaching a century at the Stormers. Photo: BackpagePix

Team first for Super centurion Malherbe

By Wynona Louw Time of article published Feb 7, 2020

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Playing your 100th game for the Stormers is pretty special. Playing it at Newlands against the Bulls, even better. Doing that this year, the last one at Newlands, surely should be enough to make the occasion one of your biggest career highlights.

Stormers tighthead Frans Malherbe would be able to tell you all about that, although he’s not making too big a deal out of it.

For the World Cup-winning front-rower, it certainly is an honour, but he was quick to remind everybody present at the team announcement yesterday that it hasn’t been his biggest focus this week. Preparing for the Bulls and focusing on contributing as best he can is where his mind is at.

“It’s obviously special to me, but it’s the last thing on the priority list when it comes to the build-up,” he said.

“It’s very special, I don’t think many guys have played their 100th at Newlands, obviously you don’t work it out like that, but it’s great when it happens like that.

“The individual stuff comes afterwards, while I’m here I want to contribute to the Stormers being successful again. I know that sounds cliche, but it’s true.

“One of the guys said you need to leave this place better than what it was when you started out, and that’s true.”

Malherbe will be joined in the front row by Steven Kitshoff and Scarra Ntubeni, who comes in for Bongi Mbonambi. The Bok hooker started against the Hurricanes last week and will be out of action for four to six weeks.

The is one other injury-enforced changed to the starting pack.

In the loose trio, Johan du Toit comes in at No 8 in the place of skipper Siya Kolisi, who was ruled out for at least six to eight weeks after suffering a grade three medial collateral ligament tear (knee) in their opener against the New Zealaders.

On the bench, fit-again Cobus Wiese offers second-row backup, with David Meihuizen dropping out of the match day squad.

Juarno Augustus also makes his return among the replacements, while Chad Solomon gets his first opportunity of the new season.

Dobson has opted for a six-two split again, with Godlen Masimla and Jean-Luc du Plessis the two backs on the bench.

@WynonaLouw

Cape Times

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