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Stormers' attacking kicks are 'not flukes'

SPOTLIGHT: Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu has praised the coaches in the Stormers camp for helping players add a few more strings to their attacking bow.

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The Capetonians are preparing for another massive North-South derby against the Bulls in Pretoria in the United Rugby Championship.

John Dobson’s side are currently on a six-game winning streak in all competitions with their last game being a vital 25-21 victory over the Sharks in Durban on February 17.

Feinberg-Mngomezulu wasted little time in picking up where he left off in his return from a short spell on the sidelines, setting up hooker Joseph Dweba’s opening try with a wonderfully executed crossfield kick to wing Ben Loader at Kings Park.

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“Those attacking kicks are things we work extremely hard at, especially with [kicking coach] Gareth Wright,” Feinberg-Mngomezulu explained. ”

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“They’re not flukes and they certainly aren’t out of our framework.

“All credit to our coaches. Along with us, they will identify certain spatial opportunities during the week.

“That makes our job much easier – we just need to go out and execute.

While plenty has been made of the Stormers’ unbeaten record in local derbies, which stretches back to December 2021, Feinberg-Mngomezulu says the team is keeping a level head as the focus remains on ensuring they are well-prepared for the challenge ahead.

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“This week’s preparation, for the North-South derby, is huge,” Feinberg-Mngomezulu said.

“It’s one of the biggest challenges of the year so it requires massive amounts of focus, confidence and detail.

“We take our confidence out of the week’s practice so ticking those boxes will be the most important thing for us.”

The Stormers are coming off a short week’s break, which allowed the team to recover from the bumps and bruises after that physical coastal derby against the Sharks.

“Playing week in and week out can be tiring to an extent,” Feinberg-Mngomezulu said.

“So that six or seven days ‘down time’ with family and friends, essentially away from rugby, gives the boys a great chance to re-energise and revitalise for what is a big week of preparation.”

Able to also play at flyhalf and fullback, Feinberg-Mngomezulu enjoyed getting another run at inside centre against the Sharks, alongside fellow youngsters Jurie Matthee and Suleiman Hartzenberg.

“Like I’ve said in the past – I am a Stormers supporter, so playing anywhere at any time is something I will cherish and try make the most of, whether it’s in the No.12 jersey or anywhere else,” he said.

The Stormers have an excellent recent record when playing at altitude, opening the 2023-24 campaign with a thrilling win against the Lions.

Feinberg-Mngomezulu expects the conditions to present an extra challenge as the Stormers look to continue climbing the URC table.

“Winning at altitude is always a demanding physical task but also mental,” he said.

“Planning and executing how and where we want to play whilst conserving energy is what will separate us.

“We’re a team that doesn’t go away, even when we’re in dark places, so altitude is something that we’ll take head-on.”

 

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