Nine of the players named in the 47-man Stormers’ squad will miss their opening Super Rugby match against the Jaguares as well as the three-game tour to Australasia.
Stormers coach Robbie Fleck named his greater training squad at Newlands on Thursday. Fleck confirmed that Springboks Eben Etzebeth (shoulder), Frans Malherbe (neck) and Jano Vermaak (knee), as well as SP Marais (toe), Scarra Ntubeni (hamstring), Ali Vermaak (hamstring), Jean-Luc du Plessis (groin), Dan du Plessis (shoulder) and Juarno Augustus (back) will not be available for the match against the Jaguares on 17 February, or for the tour fixtures against the Waratahs, Crusaders and Highlanders.
Fleck hopes to have Bok tighthead Wilco Louw, who went down with a hip injury in the warm-up match against the Bulls last Saturday, back training with the side on Monday.
Bok loose forward Siya Kolisi will continue as Stormers captain. Steven Kitshoff is set to assume the vice-captaincy duties until Etzebeth returns from his injury.
Craig Barry (Cheetahs) and Neethling Fouche (Maties) are currently with other teams but available to the Stormers this season.
Fleck said that despite the injuries, the players are excited to get the season underway.
‘It has been a good pre-season, which has seen us implement a number of new ideas, so the players are keen to make all the hard work count out on the pitch.
‘We are all looking forward to our opening game against the Jaguares, which gives us a chance to play in front of our loyal fans at Newlands before we go on tour.’
Stormers squad – Juarno Augustus, Craig Barry, Nizaam Carr, Jaco Coetzee, Damian de Allende, Jan de Klerk, Paul de Wet, Stephan de Wit, Dan du Plessis, Jean-Luc du Plessis, Johan du Toit, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Dewaldt Duvenage, JJ Engelbrecht, Eben Etzebeth, Neethling Fouche, JC Janse van Rensberg, Steven Kitshoff, Siya Kolisi (captain), Dan Kriel, Dillyn Leyds, Wilco Louw, Frans Malherbe, SP Marais, Bongi Mbonambi, Salmaan Moerat, Dean Muir, Sikhumbuzo Notshe, Scarra Ntubeni, Caylib Oosthuizen, Sergeal Petersen, Justin Phillips, Raymond Rhule, Carlu Sadie, Ramone Samuels, JD Schickerling, Seabelo Senatla, Joshua Stander, Kobus van Dyk, Chris van Zyl, Alistair Vermaak, Jano Vermaak, EW Viljoen, George Whitehead, Cobus Wiese, Damian Willemse, Eddie Zandberg.
Photo: Thinus Maritz/Gallo Images