DHL Stormers driven by the Faithful

PUBLISHED: September 21, 2023

The DHL Stormers will be driven by a desire to do justice to the phenomenal support they enjoy when the 2023/24 season gets underway next month.

With the end of pre-season finally in sight, the DHL Stormers have been ramping up preparations and fine-tuning their game model so that they are ready to mix it with the top teams in both the Vodacom United Rugby Championship and Investec Champions Cup.

While the last two seasons have seen the DHL Stormers host back-to-back Vodacom United Rugby Championship Grand Finals at DHL Stadium, there is still plenty of motivation to lift standards even higher and claim some big scalps on a regular basis.

Speaking after the DHL Stormers’ 23/24 jersey launch at DHL Stadium, Dobson said that his team’s mission this season is to do justice to the incredible support that they enjoy.

“We have the best fans in the world and we want to show them what it means to represent them by playing with passion and hunting down the best teams in the game.

“What we experienced in the play-offs last season was nothing short of phenomenal. The way our fans turned up and showed the passion they have for this team was unreal.

“We feel a great responsibility to represent those people and bring some joy to their lives on a Saturday afternoon. We want to do that as consistently as possible this season.

“Our defeat in the Vodacom United Rugby Championship Grand Final last season hurt so much because we felt like we let our fans down, so making them proud is what will be driving us.

“I think one way we can try and put that right to our fans is giving everything we can to make sure we host a play-off game or two this year again. That must be our goal.

“We know we got slightly lucky in the last two seasons when perennial favourites and champions Leinster were knocked out by Vodacom Bulls and Munster respectively, but they are gold standard and like every team we want to aim to be right up there,” he said.

For Dobson, that will be as much about mindset as any technical aspect of their game.

“We will not be holding anything back, we have a great squad playing at a fantastic stadium with a new pitch and everything we need to mix it with the best in the game.

“We want to show our supporters that this is a DHL Stormers team that will fight for them in every minute of every game we play,”he said.

Dobson said that he and the coaching staff have been impressed by the attitude that the players have brought to pre-season, which shows their ambition as a group.

“We have enjoyed some good times over the last few seasons, but there is still a huge desire to push ourselves even further and compete with the best even more consistently.

“The players have really embraced that challenge, which has created a real buzz of excitement among the squad. We are excited to get going and see what these guys can do.

“The players we have brought in have also stimulated the system and will all add something valuable as we embark on another big campaign,” he said.

The DHL Stormers squad will be in the Southern Cape next week for a pre-season camp, which will also see them play two pre-season games at Outeniqua Park in George on 29 September and 6 October.