Groom: We must be fearless
Cape Town - Scrumhalf Nic Groom feels the Stormers' young and inexperienced team could pose a threat to the Bulls in their Super Rugby clash at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.
Coach Allister Coetzee
was earlier this week forced into making six enforced changes to his starting line-up, with three players on debut in the match-day 23 - lock Jean Kleyn in the starting line-up and prop Alistair Vermaak and Dylon Frylinck on the bench.
There are also six new faces on the bench, with Steven Kitshoff (knee), Frans Malherbe (concussion), Oli Kebble (concussion), Jurie van Vuuren (shoulder), Michael Rhodes
(assortment of knocks), Louis Schreuder (broken thumb), Jean de Villiers (AC joint) and Kobus van Wyk (wrist) all dropping out with an assortment of injuries after last weekend’s 29-28 win over the Highlanders at Newlands.
The new players in the selection mix, either on the bench or in the starting XV, are Kleyn, Pat Cilliers, Vermaak, Martin Dreyer, Stephan Coetzee, Frylinck, Michael van der Spuy and Devon Williams, with Peter Grant
, Cheslin Kolbe and Brok Harris
promoted from the bench to starting roles.
This is no doubt an inexperienced team rocking up to play the Bulls at Loftus, but Groom feels they could make it count in their favour.
In an interview with Die Burger's website
, Groom said it's an exciting challenge for their young team.
"We're with our backs to the wall. However, it's a wonderful opportunity for the guys. Here are guys who would never have dreamt to be in the Stormers 23-man squad by now. We'll have to be fearless."
Groom said the "unpredictability and instinct of the young player" could be very dangerous and perhaps count in their favour.
Kick-off for Saturday's game is scheduled for 19:10.Teams:Bulls:
15. Jurgen Visser
, 14. Akona Ndungane, 13. JJ Engelbrecht
, 12. Jan Serfontein
, 11. Bjorn Basson
, 10. Handré Pollard, 9. Francois Hougaard
, 8. Grant Hattingh
, 7. Jacques du Plessis, 6. Jono Ross
, 5. Victor Matfield
(captain), 4. Paul Willemse
, 3. Marcel van der Merwe, 2. Callie Visagie
, 1. Dean Greyling
Substitutes: 16. Bongi Mbonambi
, 17. Werner Kruger
, 18. Morné Mellett, 19. Jacques Engelbrecht, 20. Wimpie van der Walt, 21. Rudy Paige
, 22. Jacques-Louis Potgieter, 23. William Small-SmithStormers:
15. Jaco Taute, 14. Damian de Allende, 13. Juan de Jongh, 12. Peter Grant
,11. Cheslin Kolbe, 10. Kurt Coleman, 9. Nic Groom, 8. Duane Vermeulen
, 7. Schalk Burger (captain), 6. Nizaam Carr, 5. Ruan Botha, 4. Jean Kleyn, 3. Pat Cilliers, 2. Scarra Ntubeni, 1. Brok Harris
Substitutes: 16. Stephan Coetzee, 17. Alistair Vermaak, 18. Martin Dreyer, 19. Siya Kolisi
, 20. Deon Fourie, 21. Dylon Frylinck, 22. Michael van der Spuy, 23. Devon Williams