Kobus says errors cost Vodacom Stormers

PUBLISHED: February 11, 2007

Vodacom Stormers coach Kobus van der Merwe is of the opinion that too many errors cost them the Super 14 match against the Western Force at Newlands on Friday night.

The Stormers, who went down by 22-3, are now looking for a much improved performance against the Chiefs from New Zealand on Friday night, also at Newlands. The Cape regional side is still winless after losing their first round match against the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein.

Van der Merwe said explaining what went wrong was difficult to do. “It is a tough question, you know. I think we just turned too many balls over and 18 penalties – I don’t know what the penalty count was, but I think we were penalized 5 times in the scrum… it was again utterly disappointing.

“It’s heartbreaking when you put so much work in every week and you don’t get the results on the weekend.”

The penalties conceded in the scrums were another headache for the coach. “The calls we got from the ref was angles, but we would have to look at that again. We gave away one free kick and four penalties, of which they kicked all four and we gave away 12 points just at scrum time.”

The talented Stormers played two games now and haven’t scored a try yet. Van der Merwe admitted that was a very disappointing statistic.

“Look, the weather obviously didn’t play along tonight and we tried to change the game plan a little bit. We wanted to play a bit more with the forwards, pick and goes, but again we just turned too many balls over in the contacts. We turned a helluva lot of balls over in the contact.”

Van der Merwe said he would have to look at personnel changes in order to strengthen his team for the match against the Chiefs. He said it is very tough for the guys, especially for the loose-forwards, to play when they don’t get any front foot ball.

“We are going to look at that. I am not going to mention any individuals tonight, but we are going to look at and assess the video footage first before we make clear decisions on where we are going.”