Stormers need to up their game

2012-03-26 09:56

Cape Town - The Stormers are going to have to make a significant all-round improvement and deliver their first full 80 minute performance of the season if they hope to leave for New Zealand on Sunday as still the only unbeaten team in Vodacom Super Rugby.

When the Highlanders lost to the impressive Brumbies in Canberra at the weekend and the Stormers later in the day scraped home 24-19 against the Lions in Johannesburg, it confirmed the Cape side as the front runners in the competition. But three of their wins have been at home, two of them were a long way short of convincing, and in all their games there have been times when the Stormers have gone on what can best be described as a walkabout.

With the exception of the coastal derby against the Sharks, where they started slowly, the trend has been for the Stormers to be well ahead at the halfway mark and then to let the opposition back into it in the third quarter. Against the Lions it was the half hour point that coincided with the Stormers going off the boil, and the Lions, severely depleted by injury, dominated play everywhere but on the scoreboard from then on.

The Stormers deserve credit for the way they defended in the second half. They should also have pleased coach Allister Coetzee with the way they were able to retain composure under pressure and then find a bit of an extra gear heading into the final quarter, when the Lions were swarming all over them. Two visits into Lions territory were enough to force the penalties that saw them secure the win.

But any sort of honeymoon period the Stormers may have been going through over the past few weeks - most of the teams they have played against have been badly depleted - is most emphatically over this coming weekend, with the Bulls coming to Newlands for the long-awaited north/south derby fresh from a magnificent 61-8 massacre of the champion Reds.

Yes, the game was at Loftus and at altitude, and everyone knows how tough the Bulls are at home, plus the Reds are a long way short of their full-strength team at the moment. But it was nonetheless an awesome performance from Pierre Spies’ men, with the captain himself back to his very best form, that laid down a marker and sounded an ominous warning to the Stormers.

“We made it very tough on ourselves in Johannesburg, and that is something we are going to have to look at this week before the Bulls game. We became inaccurate and that nearly cost us and we need to be spot on against a team playing like the Bulls is at the moment,” said Coetzee.

The coach lauded his men for the way they hung in against the Lions, and reminded the Cape media that the Lions should never be underestimated at Coca Cola Park.

“It’s never easy there. The Lions gave a full-strength Sharks side 50 points there last year. What they do, they do really well. It was once again an outstanding defensive effort from us, and I am happy and chuffed about that aspect of our game. No 8 Nick Koster made 28 tackles.

“But while I felt that our attack was quite clinical in the beginning and our kicking game was accurate, we started making unforced errors. I don’t know if it may have been a bit of complacency creeping in when it was so easy for us in the beginning. It was a wake-up call. There was also a bit of silliness that crept in later in the game, and I am not sure what prompted (scrumhalf) Dewaldt Duvenage to tap a penalty five metres from their line (when we should have kicked for goal).

“At the same time though, the Lions guy who broke that movement down by intercepting a pass was not 10 metres back so we could so easily have scored a try there.”

It’s the second week in a row where the Stormers have opted to tap when a kick seemed the right option. Early in the match against the Blues, Stormers skipper Jean de Villiers picked up the ball and tried to run it in when everyone was expecting the Stormers to kick for posts.

The Stormers got away with it then and they got away with it against the Lions, but to beat the Bulls the decision making will have to be spot on. Although the Stormers are talking a lot about turning Newlands into a fortress last year’s games between the Stormers and Bulls were both won by the visiting team – the Stormers broke a long drought at Loftus in March and the Bulls avenged that defeat in Cape Town towards the end of the competition.


  • Lionel - 2012-03-26 10:02

    I think they know this already..........gonna be a cracker..........Bulls won't have it easy like against the Reds.....Stormers by 5 points

      Blou-Daan - 2012-03-26 10:12

      @Lionel Ek hou die Stormers al heel seisoen dop omdat hulle mosmaar die Bulle se groot teenstander is. Drie weke gelede het ek baie meer oor hulle geworry as nou. Ek dink die Bulle gaan die game vat so 7+

      Lionel - 2012-03-26 10:18

      Daan,die Bulle speel baie goeie rugby op die oomblik,as hulle dit vir die res van die seisoen kan volhou....time will tell!!!Stormers speel nie baie goeie rugby maar wen wat positief is, hulle kan net beter!!!!!!!!As ons Saterdag gaan speel soos ons teen die Leeus gespeel it gaan ons ons g@t sien(ek vat niks van die Leeus af weg nie Firehawk hahahha) Dink Saterdag was dit een van Pierre Spies se beter wedstryde!!! Sterkte vir Saterdag my vriend!!!!!!!!

      Rene - 2012-03-26 10:23

      Difficult one to call, although the Stormers has not impressed so far IMO! But yes, they win games they should have lost! The Bulls had an 'all round' good game against the Reds, but lets be honest, the Reds sucked big time - or was the Bulls just excellent???? It will be a toughy, I doubt the Stormers will just roll-over and play dead, but then again we are talking about the Bulls who has been very impressive with all their youngsters in their so-called building phase!

      Blou-Daan - 2012-03-26 10:28

      @Lionel Vir wie ookaal wen gaan dit nie n maklike wen wees nie. Eending is versekerd, dit gaan n riller van n game wees en ek verwag baie "spectator value" Lekker dag vir jou en ook sterkte vir Saterdag :-)

      heinrich.beukes1 - 2012-03-26 10:35

      Dankie Lionel haha darem 'n stormer supporter wat 'n bietjie rugby kennis het. Ek dink dit gaan 'n tawwe game wees my superbru het gesuffer die naweek. Om eerlik te wees ek weet nie wie om te kies nie. Sal maar gaan vir die draw. Dink julle die Lions het 'n kans teen die Crusaders?

      WP - 2012-03-26 10:37

      @Firehawk07 .Whahahahahahahhaha

      Bluey - 2012-03-26 10:39

      @Rene, in all honesty, the Bulls haven't been impressive either. Least we forget about the BLUES beating the Bulls.......can't wait till the Bulls/Stormers play here. Maybe Saffas should send over refs to balance out your constant whinging. WE ARE ALL OUT TO GET YOU, pathetic yet sad

      Lionel - 2012-03-26 10:47

      Dankie Daan,selfde!!! Firehawk,as julle daai selfde attacking game gaan speel soos die Cheetahs gespeel het dan staan julle n goeie kans!!!Ons is 100%agter julle!!!

      Rene - 2012-03-26 10:48

      @Bluey, our constant moaning about the refs eventually resulted in Bryce Lawrence/Kaplan being AXED!!!! YEAH!!!! Not to mention Paddy! I can also think of a couple of other refs that should have joined the AXE Club. Funny that Kaplan had one of his better games against the REDS. The Bulls is not on FIRE yet, but believe me, its coming! They day these guys get 'together & gel', they will be unstoppable. The Bulls still managed a BP against the raging BLUES and as a Bulls supporter, the Bulls played poorly - ALL of them and that Bluey will not happen again. Besides the Bulls is the only side that has put 50+ scores against opposition - not once but twice. Go my beloved BULLS, make us Proud!! (and Loud)

      heinrich.beukes1 - 2012-03-26 10:52

      Thanks @Lionel ons speel beter elke game ons handling error probleem is al klaar baie beter. @WP ek mors nie meer my tyd op jou comments nie, as jou nou na 'n goeie wp ondersteuner wil kyk, volg Lionel se voorbeeld.

      Bluey - 2012-03-26 11:23

      @Rene, your arm bands did wonders as well. Funny thing is, why do Saffas whinge about refs esp TMO's? Are you guys certain that you want to go down this tract? How many games against OZ or NZ have the Saffas won with neutral refs and Maori? It's going to be a long day at the office..........we all know the truth, all as we need now is for you to admit it BTW, are you Bulldozers Grandmother?

      Rene - 2012-03-26 11:48

      @Bluey, seeking attention don't we? I'm actually his 'great grandmother'!!! The SA rugby fraternity will do whatever it takes to make the game of rugby a fair, unbiased and a great game for ALL to enjoy.

      Lion - 2012-03-26 12:08

      Firehawk... Moenie jou steur aan WP nie. Hy is 'n idoot van die opperste water. Dis ouens soos hy wat maak dat die Stormers gehaat word deur die meeste mense. Ek weet nie meer wie die irriterendtse is nie... WP of Isak? Ek dink hy wen loshande. Hy het net een cd in sy kar en dis Leon Schuster. "Province... die Currie Cup kom weer". Daai song is nou al op repeat vir die laaste 10 jaar maar die idioot hou vol daarmee. Go BULLS!!!! Spies for Bok Captain!!!

      heinrich.beukes1 - 2012-03-26 13:13

      @Lion toemaar ek het so agtergekom, ek sou nie so grootbek gewees het as my span net net gewen het teen 'n span wat 11 beserings het nie m.a.w atleast 'n C span, maar dit lyk goed vir ons toekoms!

  • Japjapjap - 2012-03-26 10:07

    Ek stem saam met Isak. en nee, die ou skrywertjie oordryf nou heeltemal...-"up their game"?? Wat bedoel hy?? hulle is klaar bo!!! en die stormers speel klaar absoluut ongelooflik baie goed!! saterdag het di stormers gewys hulle is di top span!! inteendeel hulle kan dit nou rustig vat & ontspan di naweek wat kom. geniet die rugby ouens en onthou, wen is ni allles ni!!

      Bulldozer - 2012-03-26 10:10

      Solank ons dit geniet.

      Koos - 2012-03-26 10:16

      Hoekom 'n trofee kas besit as hy nooit gebruik word nie. Hou by die blou.

      Japjapjap - 2012-03-26 10:21

      @koos- buitendien, 'n trofee kas kan ook gebruik word vir blomme, dinosaurus bene of ou foto's van weepee rugby legendes en sprokies.. aag eintlik vir baie ander dinge!!

      Blou-Daan - 2012-03-26 10:29

      @Koos Ek wonder of hulle gaan saamvat as hulle oorskuif na die nuwe stadion toe :-)

      Bulldozer - 2012-03-26 10:51

      Daan, ek glo nie. As n mens trek, dan gooi jy mos alles weg wat jy nooit gebruik het.

      Rene - 2012-03-26 11:04

      @Dozey, dis waar, maar ek weet nie vir wie hulle die trofee kas kan skenk nie, Ikeys??? oepsie nee, Cobras???? nog 'n oepsie, nie 'n trofee of 'n coach nie!!! Vuurmaak hout, enigste oplossing!

      Bulldozer - 2012-03-26 11:12

      Dit klink na n plan, René. Ek ken nie sokker nie, maar het Ajax of Santos nie n cup of n ding nie?

      Rene - 2012-03-26 11:51

      @Dozey, lol - kyk nie local sokker nie maar hulle moet maar hulle 'social donation' ding daar maak!!

      Lion - 2012-03-26 12:14

      Nee julle is almal verkeerd. Waar gaan hulle met hulle Conference Cup heen? Hoe durf julle van hom vergeet?

      Rene - 2012-03-26 12:58

      @Lion, die dingetjie is so klein, hulle kan dit in die 'badkamer' kassie sit!

  • Blou-Daan - 2012-03-26 10:08

    Ek kan nie sien hoe die Stormers bo op die Log gaan kan bly nie. Ek vermoed dat oor so 4 of 5 weke gaan beide die Sharks en Bulle beter af wees as die Stormers en besmoontlik gaan die Bulle bo aan die SA konferensie wees en klaar maak. Die Bulle het weer die jaar daai X faktor waarmee hulle al so paar bekers gewen het.

      Lionel - 2012-03-26 10:12

      Daan,Sharks gaan dit baie moelik vind,hulle het kla 3 games verloor!!!!!!

      Blou-Daan - 2012-03-26 10:41

      @Isak Net die tyd sal leer.....!!!! Sterkte ook vir jou en al die Stormers. Alby spanne gaan dit nodig he, maar ek se weer die Bulle gaan met 7+ wen.

  • WP - 2012-03-26 10:08

    Stormers jou lekading !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Japjapjap - 2012-03-26 10:17

      Stormers jou leke deng!!!! en as julle verloor of as julle verloor, dit is NIE belangrik NIE. julle moet dit net geniet. Wen is buitendien overated!! Stormers jou leke deng!!!!

      WP - 2012-03-26 10:30

      @japjapjap,"en as julle verloor of as julle verloor" ????? Blue Monday?

      Japjapjap - 2012-03-26 10:36

      @WP- ooooeps, foutjie, jammer... Moes gewees het ".. as julle verloor of as julle verloor, dit is NIE belangrik NIE.." dankie WP. weepee jou leke deng!!!!!!!

  • WP - 2012-03-26 10:21

    @Dik-Daan,The stormers are far more consistent ,while the Bulls blows hot & cold .Stormers by 5 to 10 points.

      Rene - 2012-03-26 10:28

      @WP, hot & cold you say??? Please elaborate, if you please?

      Blou-Daan - 2012-03-26 10:32

      @WP Must admit, the Stormers & WP was very consistent over the last 11 years. Very consistent :-)

      WP - 2012-03-26 10:36

      The Bulls lost to the bottom of the log Blues at home !!!

      Bulldozer - 2012-03-26 10:41

      It's never a disgrace to lose against 3x Super rugby champions (Blues).

      Rene - 2012-03-26 10:55

      @WP, lost with a BP against the Blues - lessons learned and NO harm done! Hot & Cold means lose one, win one blah die blah. You are just grasping at straws to convince yourself of something - not sure what though! Nothing more, nothing less!

      Nic - 2012-03-26 11:01

      "The Stormers may be the only unbeaten team in Super Rugby but they are looking no better than they did in 2010 and last year, where they relied on defence to get to the play-offs but never had the attacking game to win the tournament." Mark Keohane Defensively the Stormers were again colossal in defying the Lions, but the lack of attacking edge is looking all too familiar for a side whose players draw too much inspiration from making a tackle and not enough from making a break.

      WP - 2012-03-26 11:27

      @Bulldozer , The last time that the Blues won the trophy was in 2003. @René ,You do need a man in your life,and I mean a real man ! ! Not them Loftus Poofters.

      Lion - 2012-03-26 12:17

      WP... Gaan luister jou Leon Schuster cd!!!

  • Bames - 2012-03-26 10:35

    The 3 stooges Liebenberg, Etsebeth en Vermeulen's bar brawl attitude will cost them. Lacking the mental discipline and control required. 12 points just off those 3.

      Bulldozer - 2012-03-26 10:42

      You call it mental discipline, I call it mental capacity. You are right about the 12 points.

      Lionel - 2012-03-26 10:43

      Dream on little man!!!!!!Etzebeth and Vermeulen gaan vir Spies nail:):)

      Bulldozer - 2012-03-26 10:52

      Lionel, hulle sal like om vir Spies te nail, maar hy is straight.

      Lionel - 2012-03-26 10:59

      LOL@Dozey,moes so n antwoord van jou af verwag it!!!!!!!!Maar jy weet wat ek

      Bulldozer - 2012-03-26 11:04

      Ek weet wat jy bedoel Lionel. Ek sien gereeld daai klompie deur Clifton 4th beach loop oppad 2nd beach toe.

      Lionel - 2012-03-26 11:09

      Nou word die prentjie bietjie meer duideliker,jys die ou wat sit op die koppie daar met die verkyker en perve:):):)

      Bulldozer - 2012-03-26 11:14

      Nee, ek sit daar reg op die beach en perve.

  • Robsschele - 2012-03-26 10:43

    Congratulations to the Bulls. I expected a much better performance from the Reds. I could watch only the first half and was really surprised when I checked the final score on my phone after the game. But the Cheetahs got hammered the same and the next game the Bulls were down against the Blues. So the big question is now. Are they going to go down against the Stormers. I could watch only the second half of the Stormer match and all they did was to defend and defend. But at least they are still unbeaten in S15. That is the only unbeaten team left in the competition. What will it be next week? I haven't got a lot of hope for my team to beat the Bulls if they play like this.

  • John - 2012-03-26 10:58

    My Superbru is at an all time low. I can't pick winners in this S15 so no prediction. The Stormers will be better - lets hope.

      Robsschele - 2012-03-26 12:13

      So you don't want to predict the Stormers to win. Scared of the witch's evil eye?

  • Keith - 2012-03-26 11:20

    Bulle dwing respek af; maar Saterdag speel hulle teen die conference champs sowel as die vroee voorlopers.Ek sien uit na die stryd tussen die vaste vyf; die lostrio's en die senter kombinasies. Die Bulle het op scrummie 'n definitiewe voordeel bo ons. As ons speel soos ons kan gaan dit tough is; indien nie gaan ons lang trane huil.Stormers bo!

      Blou-Daan - 2012-03-26 11:48

      @Keith Jy is doodreg, die vaste Vyf gaan interesant wees om dop te hou tussen die twee spanne. Ek wens dit was al Saredag....!!!!!

      Lion - 2012-03-26 12:22

      Die "mighty" vaste 5 kon net mooi niks teen die Lions uitrig nie daan. Julle gaan hulle eet my vriend.

      Jc - 2012-03-26 15:11

      @ Lion - En wat van die Vaskop wat Bryan se drie veroorsaak het? Lyk my jy't 'n ander game gekyk as ek!

  • Frans - 2012-03-26 11:49

    @Blou-aan hou jouself in, 'its still early days',die bulle het al dikwels in die verlede daai x-faktor gehad, dan eindig hulle by die z-faktor. En nog n ding mense, ontspan, dis net n game, nie oorlog nie, julle wens mekaar sterkte toe, vir wat? Al verloor jou span ook gaan die son die volgende dag nog op dieselfde plek opkom,..........en ja,

  • paul.ramncwana - 2012-03-26 12:39

    Bring it on!!!!! I'm a STORMER!!!!!!!

  • Ignatius - 2012-03-26 13:26

    Go Bulls!!!

  • verweyc - 2012-03-26 14:09

    Gaan 'n moeilik game wees vir die Stromers hierdie naweek. Ek hoop maar my span kan die knoop deurhaak. Gaan nie goed voel om die eerste span te wees wat teen die Bulls in hulle pienk gewaad verloor nie. Almal verwys na die Bulls as 'n span vol jongelinge, wat nie regtig die geval is nie. Buiten CJ Stander, Hougaardt en Johan Sadie is die meeste van die Bulls spelers 25 plus. Volgens my nie regtig meer so jonk vir 'n rugby speler nie. Inteen deel is daar baie meer jong spelers in die WP span, met Kitshof, Kolisi, Etsebeth, en Koster, maar dit is geen veskoning vir wen of verloor nie. Mag die beste span (Stormers) wen.

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