The Stormers scored six unanswered tries to come away with a 39-6 bonus-point win over Griquas in their Super Rugby Unlocked match in Kimberley on Saturday.
It was by no means a glossy performance from the Stormers, but it was an improvement on their horrid display against the Vodacom Bulls last week.
The Stormers’ set-piece work as well as execution from try-scoring opportunities were great, while the eye-catching performances from several individual players – none more so than that of fullback Warrick Gelant – will be pleasing to the coaching staff.
One area of concern for coach John Dobson and co, though, will Damian Willemse’s success rate off the kicking tee with the flyhalf missing four relatively easy kicks at goal.
Gelant set up both of his team’s two first-half tries, with forwards Ernst van Rhyn and Neethling Fouche benefiting from his exquisite playmaking prowess. A solitary conversion and a penalty meant the visitors took a 15-3 lead into the locker room at half time.
Despite Griquas opening the scoring in the second half, it was easy going for the Stormers who effortlessly picked off the hosts’ defence which was continuously stretched.
Gelant continued on his merry ways as he had a hand in Angelo Davids and Dan du Plessis’ tries, before Davids himself turned provider for No 8 Juarno Augustus’ score.
Secure in the knowledge that they’ve sealed a crucial victory, Dobson made several changes and still managed to keep Griquas scoreless, while Willemse would dance his way over the tryline to wrap up the win.
Griquas – Penalty: Tinus de Beer (2).
Stormers – Tries: Ernst van Rhyn, Neethling Fouche, Angelo Davids, Dan du Plessis, Juarno Augustus, Damian Willemse. Conversions: Willemse (3). Penalty: Willemse.
Griquas – 15 James Verity-Amm, 14 Ederies Arendse, 13 Eduan Keyter, 12 Johnathan Francke, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Tinus de Beer, 9 Zak Burger (c), 8 Carl Els, 7 Stefan Willemse, 6 Gideon van der Merwe, 5 André Smith, 4 Mzwanele Zito, 3 Ewald van der Westhuizen, 2 Hendrik Luus, 1 Mox Mxoli.
Subs: 16 Monde Hadebe, 17 Andrew Beerwinkel, 18 Madot Mabokela, 19 Johan Momsen, 20 Ewan Coetzee, 21 Theo Maree, 22 George Whitehead, 23 Harlon Klaasen, 24 Bandisa Ndlovu, 25 Cameron Lindsay, 26 Dan Kasende.
Stormers – 15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Edwill van der Merwe, 13 Dan du Plessis, 12 Rikus Pretorius, 11 Angelo Davids, 10 Damian Willemse, 9 Paul de Wet, 8 Juarno Augustus, 7 Ernst van Rhyn, 6 Marcel Theunissen, 5 JD Schickerling, 4 David Meihuizen, 3 Neethling Fouche, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Steven Kitshoff (c).
Subs: 16 Scarra Ntubeni, 17 Kwenzo Blose, 18 Frans Malherbe, 19 Sazi Sandi, 20 Salmaan Moerat, 21 Chris van Zyl, 22 Ben-Jason Dixon, 23 Godlen Masimla, 24 Tim Swiel, 25 Michal Hazner, 26 Ruhan Nel.
Photo: Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images