Super Rugby preview: Stormers

    2017-02-20 15:08

    Cape Town - It's been a tough old time for Western Province rugby. 

    Financial issues have resulted in the union being liquidated, and as a result there has been a lot of uncertainty around the future of some of the biggest players at Newlands. 

    They have managed to keep most of their big names for 2017, at least, and they have an element of continuity in the form of Robbie Fleck entering his second season as head coach. 

    The Stormers won their conference last year, but came unstuck badly in the quarter-finals of the tournament when they were smashed by the Chiefs (60-21) at Newlands. 

    They will have to get used to facing Kiwi opposition quickly in 2017 as they will play all 5 New Zealand teams in regular season. 

    Based on that, it could be a tough year for the men from the Cape. 

    They are grouped alongside the Bulls, Cheetahs and Sunwolves in their conference and whoever wins that battle will get to host a quarter-final. 


    It is almost impossible to mention Eben Etzebeth without bringing up Pieter-Steph du Toit. It is one of the most respected and physically imposing second rows in world rugby and is surely the Stormers' biggest strength once again. In Etzebeth, the Stormers have a player who can dominate the physical exchanges while Du Toit is a monster at lineout time. The fitness of those two is crucial. 


    We've already mentioned the financial trouble and, as a result, the Stormers have not been very active in bringing players in this off-season. That SP Marais joining from the Bulls is probably their major signing speaks volumes. Du Toit's younger brother - loose forward Johan du Toit - also arrives alongside centre/fullback Dan Kriel. 


    Schalk Burger. The Springbok veteran said his goodbyes to Newlands last season and is with English giants Saracens for now. His absence will be felt on the field and off it. There are certain types of players who naturally lift those around them, and Burger is one such individual. 


    February 25: Bulls (h)
    March 4: Jaguares (h)
    March 11: Kings (a)
    March 18: BYE
    March 25: Sunwolves (a)
    April 1: Cheetahs (h)
    April 8: Chiefs (h)
    April 15: Lions (h)
    April 22: Crusaders (a)
    April 29: Highlanders (a)
    May 5: Hurricanes (a)
    May 13: BYE
    May 19: Blues (h)
    May 27: Sharks (a)
    July 1: Cheetahs (a)
    July 8: Sunwolves (h)
    July 15: Bulls (a)


    The Stormers could struggle this year. We wouldn't be surprised if the Bulls edge them to a home quarter-final. 

    What To Read Next

    Read News24’s Comments Policy

    Live Video Streaming
    Video Highlights
    Sport Talk
    Most Read


    05 August 2017
    29 July 2017
    22 July 2017
    21 July 2017
    15 July 2017
    14 July 2017
    08 July 2017
    07 July 2017
    01 July 2017
    30 June 2017
    09 June 2017
    03 June 2017
    02 June 2017
    28 May 2017
    27 May 2017
    26 May 2017
    21 May 2017
    20 May 2017
    19 May 2017
    13 May 2017
    12 May 2017
    06 May 2017
    05 May 2017
    30 April 2017
    29 April 2017
    28 April 2017
    22 April 2017
    21 April 2017
    15 April 2017
    14 April 2017
    09 April 2017
    08 April 2017
    07 April 2017
    02 April 2017
    01 April 2017
    31 March 2017
    25 March 2017
    24 March 2017
    18 March 2017
    17 March 2017
    11 March 2017
    10 March 2017
    04 March 2017
    03 March 2017
    02 March 2017
    25 February 2017
    24 February 2017
    23 February 2017


    Rank Team P W Pts

    Opinion Poll

    The 2017 Super Rugby tournament has reached its quarter-final stage. When all is said and done, who emerges victorious?

    The ultimate Super Rugby quiz!

    There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.