Joseph Dweba’s power scrummaging in training spread a smile across the face of coach John Dobson who believes the Springbok hooker will gain “cult hero” status at the DHL Stormers. DYLAN JACK reports.
Having spent last week familiarising himself with the Stormers set-up, Dweba has got fully stuck into training this week and is in contention to make his debut against Edinburgh on Saturday.
The burly four-Test hooker has gone through a difficult period as he struggled for regular game time at Bordeaux last season and his form fluctuated when he was called on to play for the Springboks.
“He needs a bit of squeezing and a bit of love. He needs us to back him,” said Dobson during a media conference on Wednesday. “Joseph just needs to play. I understand that at Test-match level your margin is smaller in terms of time and you have to make instant changes. We have a long journey to walk with Joseph, over the next three years.”
Dweba came under heat for his lineout throwing for the Boks, but Dobson is very excited about what the 26-year-old can offer the Stormers.
“He certainly can throw,” said Dobson. “What blew me away was his scrumming. I didn’t know that, I must admit. There was one scrum and Andre-Hugo Venter popped out and it looked like his eyes were cross-eyed. Joseph has an amazingly powerful hit. If you throw in our props next to him, that’s very exciting.
“Another thing, of course, is his carrying. He is a really good carrier.”
Dobson moved to temper expectations that Dweba would burst out of the gates on debut, but said with game time he could become a very special player for the Stormers.
“I don’t expect Joseph to dominate the world as early as Saturday. He has a bit of diesel in him. He has to play quite a bit and feel the support in the environment he has here. He will get better and better. This is somebody who can be a cult hero at this stadium. That journey starts this week.
“We won’t see the finished product this weekend but that scrumming was very mean.”
Experienced lock Marvin Orie said that his Springbok and Stormers teammate has been champing at the bit to get stuck in this week: “I think he is doing well so far. He was with us for a couple of days last week just to familiarise himself with everything.
“He is raring to go. You can see it in how he is training. We are very excited for him.”
Photo: ©Shaun Roy/BackpagePix