Springbok centre Jean de Villiers will be leading the Vodacom Stormers in their Vodacom Super 14 match against the Vodacom Cheetahs at Newlands on Saturday.
De Villiers takes over the captaincy from captain for the season, De Wet Barry, who drops down to the substitutes’ bench. This will be the first time De Villiers leads the Stormers.
Coach Kobus van der Merwe announced six changes to the side that lost to the Hurricanes last Saturday, with the backline getting a massive overhaul.
Van der Merwe said he has trust in De Villiers’ ability to be a good leader. “He has good leadership skills and plays in a position where decision-making is vital. Jean makes all the backline calls anyway.”
Joe Petersen comes into the side at fullback for the injured Werner Greeff, Greeff sustained a neck injury against the Canes and has been ruled out of rugby for the rest of the year.
“Joe gives us attacking flair,” commented Van der Merwe. “He was the number two fullback behind Werner.”
Marius Joubert moves from wing to outside centre in place of Barry, which opens up a spot for the lightning-quick Tonderai Chavhanga. The Springbok is back after a long injury layoff due to problems with his quad.
“Tondi is naturally fit and sharp. We’d like to see if he is 100% before we go on tour,” said Van der Merwe.
Neil de Kock gets a start in place of Bolla Conradie at scrumhalf in the final change to the backline. Conradie is on the bench.
Schalk Burger moves to No 8 in place of Adri Badenhorst, who reverts to the substitutes’ bench.
At flank Justin Melcks gets promotion from the bench to the starting XV in place of Burger.
An Elite Squad U/18 curtain raiser match will be played at 15h10, with the main game kicking off at 17:00.
Vodacom Stormers: 15 Joe Petersen, 14 Rayno Benjamin, 13 Marius Joubert, 12 Jean De Villiers (captain), 11 Tonderai Chavhanga, 10 Peter Grant, 9 Neil de Kock, 8 Schalk Burger, 7 Justin Melck, 6 Luke Watson, 5 Andries Bekker, 4 Ross Skeate, 3 Eddie Andrews, 2 Schalk Brits, 1 JD Moller.
Replacements: 16 Hanyani Shimange, 17 Neil Fullard, 18 Gerrie Britz, 19 Adri Badenhorst, 20 Bolla Conradie, 21 Naas Olivier, 22 De Wet Barry.
Vodacom Stormers overseas tour squad announced
– Wednesday, March 15, 2006
Kobus Van Der Merwe, head coach of the Vodacom Stormers, on Wednesday announced his touring squad of 28 players. The Vodacom Stormers depart for Australia on Thursday 23 March and have a bye before playing the Western Force in Perth on Friday 31 March.
The touring squad is as follows:
Barry De Wet
De Kock Neil
De Villiers Jean
Van Niekerk Joe