WP back Scarra, Steenkamp
Allister Coetzee (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Western Province coach Allister Coetzee is confident hooker Scarra Ntubeni and lock De Kock Steenkamp can fill the injury void left in their forward pack.
Springboks Andries Bekker and Tiaan Liebenberg were on Monday ruled out of their Currie Cup semi-final against the Golden Lions in Johannesburg on Saturday.
Lock Bekker (toe) and hooker Liebenberg (back) were injured at Newlands against the Free State Cheetahs on Saturday, and will be out of action for at least a week.
"We know that even [as] you lose players, the job must go on. It is unforeseen and not ideal especially when you're preparing for a Currie Cup semi-final," Coetzee said on Monday in Bellville.
"We'll focus on what we have. Fortunately De Kock and Scarra are not strangers to our systems.
"He's actually always played well when given a chance and now he has a chance to start again.
"He has never let us down and in the past he's also learnt to manage our lineout well.
"During the Super Rugby season he coped well with the pressure and this time he can count on support from (Eben) Etzebeth, Don (Armand) and (Duane) Vermeulen."
Regarding whether Deon Fourie was considered at hooker having covered the position for three seasons, Coetzee said Fourie had been playing well at No 6.
"We don't want to make it a fruitcake (by picking Fourie at No 2) and besides, Deon has been playing well as a blindside flanker.
"Scarra has been doing well when he' joined play, and both players have a huge work load."
Coetzee said his side would have to play better then they did against the Cheetahs even though Province won the game 36-15.
"We'll have to play better than we played against the Cheetahs. Our performance against the Cheetahs was like a dress rehearsal.
"The players did a review of the Cheetahs game and we saw that we can improve in some areas, especially when it comes to decision-making. There were a few situations when we did not capitalise.
"This week we'll be looking at ways to counter the Lions' ability to contest line-outs with great success.
"They are the champions and this week a few players who did not play against the Bulls are returning from injury and they'll be even stronger."
Bolla Conradie was a surprise addition to training on Monday, even though the former-Boland scrumhalf was given a send-off by the 'Winefarmers' a few weeks ago.
"We didn't see the need to disrupt the Under-21s, and Bolla indicated that he was available to come and train with us," said Coetzee.
"He's an experienced campaigner and he knows our systems, having played many times for the Stormers and WP for quite a few years. He is here in case of emergency - should anything happen to Nic (Groom) or Louis (Schreuder)."
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