Coetzee likely to rest stars for Lions


The much anticipated return of loose forwards Schalk Burger and Nick Koster for the Stormers’ clash against the Lions on Saturday has been put on hold.


Stormers coach Allister Coetzee said on Monday that both players were experiencing pain and had been unable to pursue rehabilitation programmes.

“Before the Super Rugby break we thought they would return against the Lions,” said Coetzee.

“Their operations were successful but both suffered bone bruising so we’re looking at another two weeks before they are available.”

Better news from the Stormers camp is that lock Andries Bekker will run out against the Lions after missing two matches before the break for the international season.

“He’s looking good, back in training and the break has done him a world of good,” said Coetzee.

“We’ll always need to manage players and he’ll be monitored closely.”

The Stormers’ training session on Monday proceeded without Springbok squad players.

Joe Pietersen is down with flu, Bryan Habana‘s resting because of a knock to the knee, but needs a break after playing non-stop since the start of the year.

Eben Etzebeth has a stiff ankle and Gio Aplon as well as Jean de Villiers are rested.

“Steven Kitshoff returned from the Baby Boks and he’s played five games in two weeks.

“I know from past experience it hasn’t always paid off to pick the returning Boks and its likely that some of them will be rested on Saturday,” said Coetzee.

Etzebeth was sent for X-rays as a precaution.

Coetzee still has a fair amount of selection concerns because Rynhardt Elstadt is under suspension and injury-hit Duane Vermeulen will only be available in a month’s time.

The flank Pieter Louw who announced his comeback in May after retiring prematurely told Coetzee on Monday that he had decided to return to business instead and won’t be available.

Coetzee said it had come as a surprise because the 64-times WP capped Louw had done well to pick up his fitness and conditioning.

Coetzee said the Stormers parted with flank Nick Fenton-Wells, who has requested permission to pursue a contract with Aviva Premiership club Saracens.

Coetzee said lock Quinn Roux was a strong candidate to play on Saturday.

“He’s had one match for the Stormers and we were pleased with his performance,” said Coetzee.

“He’s showed that he’s capable and before his injury it was likely that he would have been chosen ahead of Etzebeth.”

The clash against the men from Johannesburg kicks off at 17:05 on Saturday.

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  1. What going to be more interesting is how the three returning U20 locks return to the comp (2Lions and 1 Shark)…

    Not having Elstadt there is going to mess with the loosie depth and they’re starting to look pretty flimsy…

    Personally would not be starting with Bekker but playing him off the bench…

  2. Why is Jean rested? He did fuckall:

    Tackles: 3
    Metres made 37 (the one break was at least 20)
    Passed the ball 3 times (no playmaker passes)
    and manged to lose the ball once.

    Outplayed by Mr Average Olivier.

    and we wonder why our backline (and that of stormers) has been impotent.

  3. Stormers are in BIG trouble regarding there loosies. They have lost 4 loosies this year to injury, and still the were happy to let two of there Vodacom Cup Winning loosies go play overseas? One more injury, and its tickets! Don’t bank on all three, or even any of Koster, Vermeulen or Schalla to be ready for playoffs.
    Groot kakkas as jy my vra!!!

  4. Reply to KingPaul @ 9:48 am:

    its the ‘to rest STARS’ bit that got me.

    Jean did his usual fokol
    Eben butchered good backline ball
    Aplon chased a few uppies
    Pietersen carried tackle bags.

    bad news for the lions is that stormers without Jean actually carry an attacking threat

  5. Reply to bryce_in_oz @ 7:19 am:

    The Lions will use Paul De Klerk alongside Franco VD Merwe. Ruan plays off the bench as a lock/ jumping loose forward for them.

    Still the Lions will probably get smashed in all respects as they have played their one decent game of the season. They are always good for one upset win against a decent side that proves they can play rugby but only when they choose to. And in Super Rugby that is once per season.

  6. They’re like cheap whores Craven

    They roll over for everyone

    But they usually have at least one shock in the system.

    And usually it’ll be against a side that has pretensions of winning.