Cape Town - Springbok prop BJ Botha is the player that the Stormers are hoping to bring to the Cape to bolster front-row resources for the last few Super 14 matches.
It is understood that the Stormers are in negotiations with Botha and his Irish club, Ulster, with the aim to have him released for five weeks from his European commitments.
Botha is an old boy of DHS and has played all his rugby in South Africa for the Sharks. He left to further his career overseas in 2008 and was sidelined from international action until he made a successful return to the Springbok team during last season’s end of year tour.
The Stormers are not yet in a position to confirm Botha’s signing, but they are confident that a deal can be worked out.
The SOS to Botha comes because of the injuries that have cut into the Stormers’ front-row depth. JC Kritzinger is out of Friday night’s game against Crusaders at Newlands and may be sidelined for a bit longer than that.
“JC has a calf injury and will definitely miss the Crusaders match. He is about 5/50 for the match against the Sharks the following week,” said Stormers coach Allister Coetzee.
Wicus Blaauw, the first choice loosehead prop, is not expected back during the Super 14, although there is a faint glimmer of hope that he may be able to play in the play-off fixtures should the Stormers get that far.
“The splint has been taken off Wicus’ hand, but everything will happen gradually and we will only know later whether he might be ready before the end of the season,” said Coetzee.