DHL Stormers flanker Mike Rhodes will miss his team’s Vodacom Super Rugby clash against the Chiefs at DHL Newlands on Saturday (kick-off 15h00).
Rhodes has not recovered fully from the bang to the knee he took against the Lions at the end of last month and after sitting out his team’s 29-13 win over the Sharks last Saturday, he will not be risked this weekend either.
Lock Ruan Botha and winger Kobus van Wyk are back in the selection mix this week, as is Jurie van Vuuren (lock/flank), as the DHL Stormers get set to host New Zealand’s Conference leaders.
The full DHL Stormers injury report (09/03/15):
– Flank Mike Rhodes (knee) did some controlled running on his own today. He is not 100% comfortable as yet and won’t be risked for this weekend, with a bye coming up next week and the team’s four-match tour of Australasia on the horizon.
– Lock Ruan Botha (mild concussion) is back at full training and available for selection after missing the win over the Sharks and so is Jurie van Vuuren (shoulder).
– Wing Kobus van Wyk (calf strain) is back at full training and available for selection this week, after missing the DHL Stormers’ four matches to date.
– Lock Eben Etzebeth took a bang on his shoulder against the Sharks which has affected his previous (chest) injury a bit, which is normal for two injuries in such close proximity. He is a bit uncomfortable and a call will be made on his participation later this week.
– Hooker Scarra Ntubeni took a knock to the shoulder on Saturday. It does not appear to be serious but a call will be made on him later this week.
– Hooker Bongi Mbonambi (AC Joint) missed the Sharks clash with an injury suffered at training last week. He was throwing in at training on Monday, which is a good sign in terms of his fitness.
– Centre Juan de Jongh and fullback Cheslin Kolbe sat out parts of training today, but both are continually being managed on Mondays after both carrying heavy workloads during games and at training.
– There is a delay on Jaco Taute’s (centre/fullback) return from a knee injury and he is a doubt for the DHL Stormers’ upcoming tour of Australasia. The medical team will continue to be conservative on him.
QUOTES FROM HEAD COACH ALLISTER COETZEE:
On facing the Chiefs:
“They’re a quality team with a quality coach in Dave Rennie and it’s not for nothing that they’ve won this competition twice in the past three years. They have a strong set-piece and boast quality players across the board.
“The challenges seem to be getting bigger in this tournament.
“The Chiefs can generate their own ball through their solid set-piece and, of course, are dangerous in broken play. Nothing less than what we have seen (from ourselves) and better will do this week. They will also be hurting after their loss to the Highlanders this past weekend – they are on this tour to win, nothing less will do for them.”
On Schalk Burger’s performance on Saturday (off the bench):
“Schalk got a great reception when he came on on Saturday – as if he needed a reminder of how special it is to play at DHL Newlands. Like I said on Saturday night, it was a special game for us in front of a special crowd and we’re expecting more of the same against the Chiefs.”