Fit-again back Dillyn Leyds has been named in the DHL Stormers’ line-up for Saturday’s Vodacom Super Rugby clash against the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein (kick-off 17h05).
Leyds slots back into the No.11 jersey after missing his team’s hard-fought 15-13 win over the Bulls last Saturday because of a shoulder injury, with Pat Howard dropping out of the matchday 23 this week.
The return of Leyds is one of just three changes to the line-up that started against the Bulls, with prop Steven Kitshoff and lock Eben Etzebeth both being rested – the latter as part of the SA Franchise teams’ agreements with SA Rugby.
Oli Kebble will start in Kitshoff’s place (in his first start at this level, after 16 caps from the bench), whilst Jean Kleyn will make his 12th appearance in a DHL Stormers jersey when he lines up alongside Ruan Botha.
Prop Ali Vermaak and lock Manuel Carizza return to the matchday 23 this week (on the bench), whilst starting tighthead prop Frans Malherbe and replacement scrumhalf Louis Schreuder are both set to win their 50th caps for the DHL Stormers.
Malherbe, who is 24 years old, made his debut against the Lions on February 26, 2011. Schreuder, who is 25 years old, played his first match for the DHL Stormers against the Rebels on June 3, 2011.
The DHL Stormers are currently on a three-game winning streak, but have not won in Bloemfontein since 2012, with their record against the Cheetahs at Super Rugby level at the Free State Stadium reading as follows: played six, won three, lost three.
DHL Stormers coach Allister Coetzee told the www.iamastormer.com website: “We will have the same mindset for this weekend as we do for all South African Derbies. We understand how tough these games are and we know we need to pitch up.
“The Cheetahs pushed the in-form Lions in Johannesburg last week, they’re a good side – especially in Bloemfontein – and we know this will be a tough match.”
The DHL Stormers team to face the Cheetahs (away) is as follows:
15. Cheslin Kolbe
14. Johnny Kotze
13. Juan de Jongh (vice-captain)
12. Damian de Allende
11. Dillyn Leyds
10. Demetri Catrakilis
9. Nic Groom
8. Duane Vermeulen (captain)
7. Siya Kolisi
6. Schalk Burger
5. Ruan Botha
4. Jean Kleyn
3. Frans Malherbe (50th cap for DHL Stormers)
2. Bongi Mbonambi
1. Oli Kebble (Super Rugby starting debut for the DHL Stormers)
16. Scarra Ntubeni
17. Ali Vermaak
18. Vincent Koch
19. Manuel Carizza
20. Nizaam Carr
21. Louis Schreuder (50th cap for DHL Stormers)
22. Kurt Coleman
23. Huw Jones
Referee: Craig Joubert (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Jaco van Heerden (South Africa), Lourens van der Merwe (South Africa)
TMO: Johan Greeff (South Africa)