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    Coetzee grills Stormers

    2012-03-20 07:46
    Allister Coetzee (Gallo Images)

    Johannesburg - The Stormers coach Allister Coetzee had an expanded squad working at full tilt at the franchise's training headquarters in Bellville, on Monday and it was noticeable that the session was far more intense than the usual.

    Coetzee said he was "pushing it a bit" as the players had an extra day off because of their Friday match.

    "Usually we play on a Saturday but because of the Friday match there is more turn-around time," said Coetzee. "The emphasis now is on working hard to look for consistency in performances. This session was quite stiff and we were pushing it a bit. We want to maintain fitness levels.

    "It's also a time to consider the depth (of the squad) because injuries can strike any time and we're just two weeks away from a long tour.

    "We've done well in terms of closing out matches and that's a sign that the match fitness is there. We have to make sure that we don't fade and be conditioned well enough to come back when its necessary.

    "Last week we did well because of the level of accuracy and execution was right up there."

    Several key players like Andries Bekker (lock), Peter Grant and Bryan Habana (wing) did not participate in the afternoon session but Coetzee said there were no question marks hanging over their fitness.

    "It's usual for players to have the odd niggle or stiffness after a match and we give players a chance to recover fully as a way of managing them.

    "All the players did, however, do the gym training in the morning session."

    Coetzee said one area of concern, which will have to show improvement against the Lions this week will be the ability to convert scoring chances.

    "Last week we were up 17-3 at one stage, but then we didn't convert opportunities because one or two players go out of the playing systems," said Coetzee.

    "There is internal motivation to do things right and we're know that the Lions clash will be a typical derby game.

    "It is going to he hard, physical and it is about playing for 80 minutes on the Highveld.

    "We would like to put our opponents under pressure when they have ball in hand."

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