United Rugby Championship

Damian Willemse to wear No 12 as Stormers make 3 backline changes for Lions clash

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Damian Willemse. (Photo by Gordon Arons/Gallo Images)
Damian Willemse. (Photo by Gordon Arons/Gallo Images)
  • The Stormers have made three changes to their backline for Saturday's clash against the Lions at Ellis Park.
  • Winger Sergeal Petersen, centre Damian Willemse and scrumhalf Paul de Wet all start, with Angelo Davids, Dan du Plessis and Herschel Jantjies dropping to the bench.
  • The forward pack that started in the 20-10 win over the Sharks remains unchanged.

Stormers coach John Dobson has made three changes to his backline for Saturday's United Rugby Championship clash against the Lions in Johannesburg.

Sergeal Petersen starts at right wing, while Damian Willemse comes in at inside centre and Paul de Wet at scrumhalf, with Angelo Davids, Dan du Plessis and Herschel Jantjies dropping to the bench.

The pack is unchanged from the one which did duty in last week's 20-10 win over the Sharks at Cape Town Stadium.

On the bench, lock David Meihuizen also comes in for Ben-Jason Dixon.

The Stormers have had a good start to the year, beating the Bulls in Pretoria, sharing the spoils against the Sharks in Durban, before beating their coastal rivals in Cape Town last weekend.

Dobson said they will look to carry that momentum into the clash at Ellis Park.

"Playing mid-afternoon in February up in Joburg we know that we will have to be switched-on and accurate for 80 minutes," the coach told the Stormers website.

"We want to build on what we have done in the last few weeks and will be giving it everything to earn what would be an incredibly valuable win on the road.

"It is great to have some continuity in the forward pack and the rotations in the backline will hopefully ensure that we are able to apply some pressure for the full 80 minutes."

Dobson added that the changes to the backline should give his team some impetus in the latter stages.

"As we have said, we had a plan for Damian in these four games. He started at fullback for the first two and then came on at 12 last week, so now we are ready to start him at 12.

"Dan du Plessis was outstanding last week, but he has started three games in a row and to have him coming off the bench along with the likes of Herschel Jantjies and Angelo Davids will give us huge impact in the second half, which is so crucial up there," Dobson said.

Saturday's clash kicks off at 15:00.



15 EW Viljoen, 14 Stean Pienaar, 13 Manuel Rass, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Edwill van der Merwe, 10 Tiaan Swanepoel, 9 Andre Warner, 8 Francke Horn, 7 Vincent Tshituka, 6 Jaco Kriel (captain), 5 Ruben Schoeman, 4 Ruhan Straeuli, 3 Carlu Sadie, 2 PJ Botha, 1 Ruan Dreyer

Substitutes: 16 Jaco Visagie, 17 JP Smith, 18 Jannie du Plessis, 19 Ruan Venter, 20 Emmanuel Tshituka, 21 Morne van den Berg, 22 Jordan Hendrikse, 23 Wandisile Simelane


15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Ruhan Nel, 12 Damian Willemse, 11 Seabelo Senatla, 10 Manie Libbok, 9 Paul de Wet, 8 Hacjivah Dayimani, 7 Ernst van Rhyn, 6 Deon Fourie, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Adre Smith, 3 Brok Harris, 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Steven Kitshoff (captain)

Substitutes: 16 Andre-Hugo Venter, 17 Leon Lyons, 18 Sazi Sandi, 19 David Meihuizen, 20 Marcel Theunissen, 21 Herschel Jantjies, 22 Dan du Plessis, 23 Angelo Davids

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