Lions to break Stormers stingy defence
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Despite their rocky start, Lions fullback Andries Coetzee is confident that his side has the prowess to end the Stormers’ pristine run on Saturday at Ellis Park.
The Lions secured their first win of the season against the Reds, after a record-breaking 8-38 defeat to Jaguares in the opening round.
During last weekend’s win, the Johannesburg side outscored the Reds four tries to two but certainly struggled in a few areas, in particular the scrums. They conceded several scrum penalties as South African Jannie Du Plessis was put under loads for pressure by Reds prop JP Smith.
On the other hand, the Stormers scrum has proven to be their most effective weapon during their two consecutive wins over the Hurricanes and Bulls.
After two round the Capetonians have yet to concede any points and top the Super Rugby overall log.
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Speaking to the media in Johannesburg, Coetzee revealed that this weekend fixture will be one difficult task.
“This weekend is one of our biggest challenges,” Coetzee said, adding: “Last weekend the weather gave us a little bit of the curveball, but each week is an opportunity to step up and we certainly want to be better.
“It is a South African derby, and at the moment they are the best team in South Africa,”
He explained: “[Having not conceded any points] is a massive achievement by the Stormers, nonetheless we want to prove that we are not struggling. Think we will have to put them under pressure and hopefully we will be the one to score first.”
Coetzee, who spent a short stint in Japan, missed the defeat in Buenos Aries and returned to the Lions starting line-up against the Reds.
Having the seasoned fullback in the Lions’ fold certainly eased the pressure on the young backline.
The Springbok is one of the few Lions stalwarts who opted to remain with the three-time Super Rugby finalists.
“After playing with Lionel Mapoe for eight to nine years I have to get used to the new calls. For me personally it is about getting used to playing with the new guys.
“A person does miss the old teammates, but the coaches have created a nice environment where everybody is equal, making it easy to get to know each other.”
The Lions will name their team to face the Stormers on Thursday.
By Leezil Hendricks,