Stormers blow away Edinburgh in powerful URC statement

DHL Stormers Suleiman Hartzenberg is challenged by Alex Newsome of ASM Clermont Auvergne when playing the Heineken Cup at DHL Stadium

Suleiman Hartzenberg (pictured) was the chief destroyer with a hat-trick of tries for the home side, as their free-flowing style was too strong for their Scottish opponents. Picture: Phando Jikelo/ Independent Media

Published Mar 23, 2024


The Stormers blew away Edinburgh in convincing fashion as they romped to a 43-21 victory in their United Rugby Championship (URC) clash at DHL Stadium in Cape Town on Saturday.

Suleiman Hartzenberg was the chief destroyer with a hat-trick of tries for the home side, as their free-flowing style was too strong for their Scottish opponents.

With the win, the Stormers rise to 35 points and a rise well inside the top eight depending on other URC results over the weekend.

The Stormers opened the scoring in the 10th minute of the clash as a brilliant cross-kick from Manie Libbok gave Suleiman Hartzenberg the easiest of gathers in the corner as he dotted down. Libbok added the conversion from the tight angle for good measure, as the hosts were out to a 7-0 lead.


Edinburgh replied immediately as the Stormers lost the ball forward in their own half and wing Jake Henry pounced in a flash, to grab the ball, and sprint away from the home defence to score a breathtaking try. Ben Healy slotted the conversion to level the scores.

From a scrum in the middle of the park, the Stormers whipped the ball out wide with Hartzenberg waiting again on the wing, but this time he had some work to do before diving over in the corner for his brace. Libbok again nailed the conversion to make it 14-7.

Another bustling move from the Stormers saw Wandisile Simelane gather the ball just in front of the Edinburgh tryline as he managed to ground the ball in what was a closely scrutinised movement by the TMO.

Edinburgh failed to deal with a cross-kick from Libbok in the 35th minute, as Leolin Zas pounced on their mistake to gather and dart away for another easy score. Libbok this time missed the conversion, but the home side were already out to a 19-7 lead.

A botched Stormers clearance, however, led to Edinburgh striking right back as eighthman Viliame Mata found a gap off a five metre lineout to score next to the sticks. Healy nudged the ball over to make it a five-point game at 19-14.

On the stroke of halftime, Zas added a second try as he was on the end of a whirlwind Stormers backline move. Jurie Matthee, who was on the field for Libbok who was receiving treatment for a bleeding cut, was successful with the conversion from the corner to make it 26-14.

More of the same

More stunning play followed from the Stormers in the second half as their attackers drew in the Edinburgh defence to leave Hartzenberg open on the wing as he had no problem in finishing off the try for his third of the match. Libbok stepped up with a bandaged head and missed the conversion, but the lead was looking comfortable at 31-14 up after 50 minutes.

The Stormers added a sixth try as Evan Roos scored his third of this URC season, following a driving maul to see his side out 36-14 ahead.

A driving maul also proved successful for Edinburgh as replacement hooker Patrick Harrison fell down over the line for a try, as Healy sailed his conversion through the posts from the touchline to make it 36-21.

With the scoreline looking slightly more constricted, the Stormers powered back into a 20-point advantage as Roos barged his way over for his brace. Libbok was successful with his third conversion of the evening, before heading off the field for a final time as the home team led 43-21 with nine minutes remaining.


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