Burger to return off the bench

2014-04-23 00:00

JOHANNESBURG — Schalk Burger will on Saturday return to the scene of his comeback to rugby in September last year in the same position he was then — playing off the bench.

According to the supersport.com website, the difference this time is that while the venue is again Bloemfontein and the Cheetahs are the same opponents, he will be playing for the Stormers and not Western Province, and in Super Rugby and not the Currie Cup.

He should also be far more confident and ready to play an extended role for Saturday, and it will not be the same as last year, when he had effectively been off the playing field for nearly two seasons.

Burger was in outstanding form before he was injured halfway through the Stormers’ tour of New Zealand and Australia and had to return home early.

Nizaam Carr and Siya Kolisi have done well on the side of the Stormers scrum in his absence, and there is also a chance that Deon Fourie may still end up playing a role there, as Scarra Ntubeni is expected back from his own injury lay-off. Fourie will probably start at hooker but can move to flank later in the game if required.

Oli Kebble is also back in the selection mix, and so is Kobus van Wyk. In both instances it is just as well, for tighthead back-up Pat Cilliers has been ruled out of the Cheetahs game with a suspected meniscus tear. The Springbok will have his knee scanned and if the injury doesn’t require an operation, he will be back in six weeks.

Van Wyk’s return is timely as Sailosi Tagicakibau is nursing a bruised sternum and a call will only be made on him later in the week.

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