Super Rugby

Larkham: Fleck not inexperienced

Stephen Larkham (Gallo Images)
Stephen Larkham (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - The Brumbies had two Super Rugby trips to Cape Town in 2015 - losing in the groups stages while winning the one that counted in the play-offs. 

Back then Brumbies coach Stephen Larkham was up against the tried and tested Allister Coetzee, while this Saturday at Newlands he will take on Robbie Fleck for the first time. 

Fleck, named as interim Stormers coach at the start of the season after the Eddie Jones fiasco, has been vocal in his side's ambitions to be more expansive in 2016. 

It is something that Larkham is aware of, and the former Wallabies flyhalf says he has already seen a difference in the Stormers under Fleck.

"That’s pretty evident. They’re certainly throwing the ball around a bit more," Larkham said from Cape Town on Tuesday.

"Their defence is still fairly strong. I guess that’s what you want to do as the coach of a team … you want to make sure that what was strong in the past remains strong and if you can tinker with stuff and get a better outcome then you certainly want to do that.

"What we’ve seen so far is that they are being a little bit more expansive with their play."

Larkham added that he was not surprised at all when the Stormers opted to appoint Fleck following the disappointment of losing out on current England coach Jones. 

"It’s been a pretty good start to the season for them. I wouldn’t say Robbie is inexperienced," said Larkham.

"He’s been a professional rugby player for as long as I was and he was brilliant in his own right as a rugby player.

"He’s been coaching for a number of years now so I think it was always going to be a natural progression for him to get to this position at some stage.

"Maybe it’s a little bit quicker than he would have expected or other people would have expected but I’m sure he’s doing a great job."

The Brumbies are undefeated so far this season.

Kick-off on Saturday is at 19:15.

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