Coetzee wants to stick to same squad

PUBLISHED: February 16, 2010

Vodacom Stormers coach Allister Coetzee is a firm believer in continuity and doesn’t plan major changes to his side for Saturday’s second Vodacom Super 14 match against the Waratahs at Newlands.

Coetzee told the media he would like to keep the same 22 bar injuries and that he was still waiting for the doctor to come back with the scans from this morning. “At this point in time Wicus (Blaauw) is the only guy that has got a question mark.”

Asked whether he will be looking at including some of the players who featured for Vodacom Western Province against the SWD Eagles on Saturday, Coetzee said: “I’m having a look at their friendly today, but I think continuity is an important thing.

“When Lionel (Cronjé) came on there wasn’t a lot he could have done but there’s no reason to chuck him out of the squad. I’m aware of Willem’s (De Waal) ability, but like I say, I want to make sure that when Willem plays his way back into the squad he’s back to his best.

“I will stick with the same group.”

The Stormers faded badly in the second half of their victory over the Lions the past Saturday at Coca Cola Park in Johannesburg, but Coetzee wasn’t too pessimistic about that aspect of their game.

“I had a look at the video and it’s a matter of not looking after our ball well. There are numerous clips I want to show players of how easily we turned the ball over and then we had to defend for five or more phases again and we ended up defending the whole second half.

“Then we get an opportunity with a good kicking play in their half, and then we repeat ourselves or we concede a penalty and they kick themselves out of their half again.

“When you’ve been defending for five phases, you obviously start to get tired and then the altitude factor kicks in big time. It’s easier to run the ball than make tackles and defend all the time.

“It doesn’t mean that it completely destroyed our confidence. We really played exceptionally well in the first half and we were very accurate. It’s just the same focus form the first half that we need to take into the second half.”

The coach doesn’t feel that the new policing of the breakdowns impacted the match too much.

“I don’t think anything has changed. You didn’t see any turnovers in the first half. It’s important, once you build up a 20-point lead, especially with their unpredictable way of playing, where you never know what ‘s coming, it’s important that we keep that focus there.”

He said the killer instinct should be more prevalent in future. “At one stage it really looked like it was going to be easy, and we want to make sure we put the killer blow in and put the okes to bed once we get that opportunity again.”