WATCH: Stormers must finish off the ‘big moments’ to beat Munster in URC final, says captain Steven Kitshoff

Steven Kitshoff says the Stormers must have ‘BMT’ in their final against Munster. Photo: Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

Steven Kitshoff says the Stormers must have ‘BMT’ in their final against Munster. Photo: Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

Published May 17, 2023


Cape Town – Steven Kitshoff certainly deserved a proper farewell before he moves to Ulster next season, but not even the Stormers captain expected to have a third goodbye at the Cape Town Stadium.

That, though, is exactly what the ginger-haired loosehead prop will receive from his adoring home fans in the United Rugby Championship final against Munster on May 27, and he is delighted to experience yet another special occasion.

“The stars have aligned for us to actually have another farewell! It’s special,” the Springbok stalwart said this week.

“The biggest task, having reached back-to-back finals, is not dying at the summit. For us, it was about getting over the quarter-final and semi-final hurdles, and then having a full go at the trophy again and try to defend it with everything we’ve got – it’s special to actually play a grand final at Cape Town Stadium.

“But it’s all about the rugby over the next two weeks – getting our stuff in order and understanding what Munster bring, and focusing only on the 80 minutes.

“The emotion will definitely come in afterwards, but it’s about getting the alignment in the team and management to be 100 percent focused on the game.”

The Cape side were superb in coming back from an 8-0 deficit to score six sparkling tries in their 43-25 semi-final victory over Connacht last weekend, but will still be feeling the sting from their recent 26-24 defeat to Munster.

Their previous loss at the Cape Town Stadium was to the Lions in December 2021, so they will be out to take revenge in the defence of their title.

In fact, Munster beat the Stormers 34-18 in Ireland in October 2021, so John Dobson’s team will hope that it will be a case of third time lucky against Springbok RG Snyman and his team.

“Thinking back to the Munster game (on April 15 at Cape Town Stadium), we had a slow start and they scored a couple of good tries. We fought our way back into the game, and got the lead at one point – but couldn’t finish (it off),” Steven Kitshoff said.

“There were a lot of opportunities for us to come away with points and get the victory, but also, Munster’s defence was excellent and they put us under pressure. I think there are going to be opportunities. In the Leinster-Munster (URC semi-final) game, there were also a lot of opportunities, and neither team executed on those.

“In finals rugby, it comes down to… if you’ve got the balls to finish on those big moments, like we did towards the end of the game against Connacht. The game was tight all the way to 75 minutes, and we scored two nice tries.

“What will be a big factor is the team that execute the best on their opportunities will come away with the trophy.”