DHL Stormers secure play-off spot

PUBLISHED: May 18, 2024

The DHL Stormers secured a place in the Vodacom United Rugby Championship play-offs with a hard-fought 16-12 win against Connacht in Galway on Saturday.

It was a tough battle against the Irish side, who were desperate to win to keep their play-off hopes alive, but the DHL Stormers did enough in the end to secure the win.

The result means that the DHL Stormers remain in fifth position, with just one round of league fixtures left. They take on the Emirates Lions at DHL Stadium on 1 June, which will determine the final positions of the top eight heading into the quarterfinals.

The early exchanges in Galway were intense, with both teams getting stuck in and the defences coming out on top.

The DHL Stormers built some pressure through a dominant scrum and camped in the 22 before Manie Libbok opened the scoring with a penalty.

Connacht took their opportunity to score when scrumhalf Caolin Blade scrambled over and despite some more sustained pressure from the DHL Stormers in the final stages of the first half, the home team took a 7-3 advantage into the half-time break.

The DHL Stormers had the wind at their backs in the second half and it was not long before they took the lead back.

Libbok was put in space by Warrick Gelant and then found a flying Angelo Davids on his inside. The winger had no trouble finishing the try to put them in front.

Connacht responded with a try from replacement prop Jack Aungier, but two more Libbok penalties saw the DHL Stormers secure the win and book their play-off spot.

The scorers:

For DHL Stormers:
Try: Davids
Con: Libbok
Pens: Libbok 3

For Connacht:
Tries: Blade, Aungier
Con: Carty

DHL Stormers: 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Suleiman Hartzenberg, 13 Dan du Plessis, 12 Damian Willemse, 11 Angelo Davids, 10 Manie Libbok, 9 Herschel Jantjies, 8 Hacjivah Dayimani, 7 Ben-Jason Dixon, 6 Evan Roos, 5 Ruben van Heerden, 4 Salmaan Moerat (captain), 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Joseph Dweba, 1 Brok Harris.
Replacements: 16 Andre-Hugo Venter, 17 Kwenzo Blose, 18 Neethling Fouche, 19 Adre Smith, 20 Marcel Theunissen, 21 Stefan Ungerer, 22 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 23 Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu.