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Willemse takes centre stage against Leinster

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: The Stormers Director of Rugby John Dobson has named his team to face Leinster in the United Rugby Championship Round 15 match at Cape Town Stadium on Saturday.

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Prop Brok Harris will become the first player to reach 150 appearances for the Stormers in the encounter on Saturday.

Loose forwards Evan Roos and Marcel Theunissen will both bring up the milestone of 50 matches for the Stormers in the clash with the log-leaders Leinster.

Harris is joined in the front row by Neethling Fouche and Joseph Dweba, while captain Salmaan Moerat will partner Ruben van Heerden in the second row.

Roos and Theunissen will link up with Ben-Jason Dixon in the loose trio, with hooker Andre-Hugo Venter and lock Connor Evans joining the matchday squad this week on the replacements bench.

There are just two changes to the backline, with Damian Willemse alongside Dan du Plessis in midfield and Herschel Jantjies in at scrumhalf.

Stormers Director of Rugby John Dobson paid tribute to the three players reaching milestones in what is a critical match for his side.

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“Nobody has played more times for the Stormers than Brok Harris. This is a remarkable achievement and we couldn’t be happier for him. He is a top rugby man in every sense.

“Evan and Marcel have hit the 50 mark early in their careers and while they have a lot to be proud of, we know that there is much more to come from both of them,” he said.

Dobson added that this match is set to be one for the ages given the context of the season.

“Hosting Leinster at Cape Town Stadium is a massive game no matter the circumstances, but with both teams looking to bounce back from defeat last week and the play-offs fast approaching we are expecting an epic duel,” he said.

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Stormers: 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Suleiman Hartzenberg, 13 Dan du Plessis, 12 Damian Willemse, 11 Ben Loader, 10 Manie Libbok, 9 Herschel Jantjies, 8 Evan Roos, 7 Ben-Jason Dixon, 6 Marcel Theunissen, 5 Ruben van Heerden, 4 Salmaan Moerat (captain), 3 Neethling Fouche, 2 Joseph Dweba, 1 Brok Harris.
Replacements: Andre-Hugo Venter, 17 Kwenzo Blose, 18 Frans Malherbe, 19 Connor Evans, 20 Willie Engelbrecht, 21 Hacjivah Dayimani, 22 Stefan Ungerer, 23 Wandisile Simelane.

Date: Saturday, April 27
Venue: Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town
Kick-off: 19.05 (17.05 GMT; 18.05 Ireland and UK time)
Referee: Andrea Piardi (Italy)
Assistant referees: Marius vd Westhuizen (South Africa) and Christopher Allison (South Africa)
TMO: Gianluca Gnecchi (Italy)

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