Vodacom Stormers coach Kobus van der Merwe not only has to deal with a neck injury to fullback Werner Greeff this week, but he also admits to searching for the missing ingredient that prevent his team from closing off games.
The Stormers on Saturday succumbed in the second half for the third time in a Vodacom Super 14 match at Newlands.
This time Hurricanes wing Hosea Gear shook off four defenders in the 78th minute to score the try that condemned the home team to a third defeat.
Van der Merwe admitted to being completely in the dark about what causes his team to implode in the last 20 minutes of games.
“That is what I’m looking for – if we knew that we wouldn’t have been three games down (with reference to the games against the Waratahs, Brumbies and Hurricanes they’ve lost by squandering halftime leads).
“It is just a question of concentration and ability to close a game out and control a game in the last 20 minutes. I think that is the key,” the coach said.
Greeff on Saturday was forced off the field by a lame arm and afterwards it was established he had sustained a neck injury. The extent of the injury was not known on Monday afternoon.
Looking ahead, Van der Merwe said they would love to beat the Cheetahs at Newlands next Saturday before embarking on the overseas leg of their campaign.
“I think they have eight points on the log, we’ve got eight and the Bulls fourteen, so it is important not to lose sight of that.
“We are obviously looking forward to the overseas tour, but every week is the same. We will allow us the 24 hours to sulk, regroup and work hard again.
“De Wet mentioned that we cannot keep our minds on the loss for too long. It is a new week with new challenges. The Cheetahs certainly will be a tough proposition.”