After two rounds of Vodacom Super Rugby, DHL Stormers lock Eben Etzebeth has both stolen more line-outs and taken more total line-outs than any other player in the competition.
After two rounds of Vodacom Super Rugby, DHL Stormers lock Eben Etzebeth has stolen more line-outs and taken more total line-outs than any other player in the competition.
The 24-year-old enforcer has formed a fearsome second row partnership with new recruit Pieter-Steph du Toit, and the pair have been a highly influential weapon for the DHL Stormers already.
Etzebeth has won opposition line-out ball six times in the victories over the Vodacom Bulls and Toyota Cheetahs, which is twice as much as the next best – a group including Du Toit.
He has taken 19 line-outs altogether, which is three more than anyone else, and he has also made 22 tackles to boot.
Etzebeth puts his early success in the line-outs this season down to the influence of Du Toit and new Forwards Coach Russell Winter who have implemented a new system, laughing off suggestions that he is the mastermind on his own.
“Our coach Russell Winter has worked hard with us on our contesting, but it is a team effort from all the forwards.
“Pieter-Steph takes control of the line-outs, and with him here and the new system we have it is working quite well – that is why I look like a new tactician,” he said.
Etzebeth explained that an important part of their success so far has been choosing which balls to contest.
“We have our balls that we want to contest a bit more than others and we decide during the week where we want to target them and we take it from there, I am not going to give away too much,” he said.
Despite his early success, Etzebeth is determined to continue improving, starting on Saturday when the DHL Stormers take on the Cell C Sharks at DHL Newlands.
“I just want to improve in every game and every year so hopefully I can do that.
“We pride ourselves on our scrums and line-outs and mauls, we just want to improve this weekend again againt the Sharks,” he added.
Make sure you book your tickets early for the DHL Stormers’ coastal clash with the Cell C Sharks at DHL Newlands on Saturday, March 12.
Tickets can be booked through Computicket or the iamastormer.com website, with stadium box office sales opening on Tuesday, March 8.
After consultation with City of Cape Town Health Officials and in line with legislation, no smoking of any kind will be allowed in the stadium which has been declared a non-smoking facility.
Previously the stadium featured four designated smoking areas in the corners of the ground, with smoking in the stands prohibited, but this is no longer allowed and all forms of smoking (including e-cigarettes) in any part of the stadium now in contravention of the stadium rules.