The DHL Stormers have been gearing up for the 2016 Vodacom Super Rugby season on a training camp in Wilderness and George this week.
The 38-man training squad travelled from Cape Town on Tuesday, and embarked on a teambuilding exercise on Wednesday that saw them kloofing down the Kaaiman’s Gorge for six hours before ending on Wilderness beach.
On Thursday it was down to business as the squad trained at a wet Outeniqua Park in George, with plenty of local supporters turning up despite the weather to watch the coaching staff put the players through their paces.
Friday will see the players train at Outeniqua Park again before returning to Cape Town on Saturday morning.
Head Coach Robbie Fleck said that it has been good to change things up after a number of successful pre-season camps in Hermanus.
“We wanted to come to Wilderness for a bit of a change of scenery, we felt that it was a new team, new management and a new campaign.
“Hermanus was really good to us and we had some good campaigns in the past, but we felt we needed a change of scenery so we moved on to Wilderness,” he told www.iamastormer.com.
Fleck explained that on top of the important work the squad has put in to build on what they achieved in the off-season, the camp has been crucial in developing a positive team culture.
“The purpose of the camp has been to build on what we started in November, we have put a major focus on our conditioning and the way we want to play but it also gives us an opportunity to build on our culture and a bit of teambuilding as well.
“The guys went up in the mountains and down the river on a few teambuilding exercises and it was fantastic,” he said.
Another positive from the camp has been that it has given the new coaching group a chance to make their mark as a collective under Fleck’s guidance.
“It is a new coaching group and we have had to knuckle down fairly quickly and get stuck into it.
“We really want to embark on a coaching collective where we spread the workload. It allows the senior coaches to focus on certain areas that we need to get done immediately.
“There is a large group of 38 players here, and there are about eight coaches who are continously working with them on a one-on-one, a unit and a team basis,” said Fleck.
The DHL Stormers head coach added that he is relishing the challenge of taking the reins in the 2016 Vodacom Super Rugby season, with the full support of both the players and the coaching staff for his vision for the team.
“We are into the thick of things and it has been great, the support of the rest of the coaches and the players has been fantastic and the guys are keen so I am really enjoying it.
“The coaching collective has made a huge difference and has made my job easier, and so has the buy-in from the players,” he said.