Juarno Augustus and Herschel Jantjies scored two tries each as the Stormers cruised to a 77-0 win over the SWD Eagles at Outeniqua Park on Saturday.
The Stormers fielded a young match-day squad, but still had enough firepower to run 11 tries past the Eagles in front of their home crowd in George.
Despite playing in damp, misty and rainy weather conditions, the Cape Town-based side dominated territory and possession from start to finish. More importantly for coach Robbie Fleck, the Stormers’ new recruits – Sergeal Petersen, Raymond Rhule, Sihle Njezula and George Whitehead – all enjoyed successful spells on debut with both Rhule and Whitehead scoring tries.
SP Marais and Chad Solomon scored converted tries within the opening few minutes, before efforts by Whitehead, Cobus Wiese and Augustus extended their lead to 35-0 at half-time.
Fleck made wholesale changes in the second half, but the Stormers continued to overwhelm SWD and control the pace of the game.
The visitors opened the floodgates in the second half. Rhule dotted down for the first try after the break, following a patient attack by the Stormers before Augustus finished off in the corner to complete his brace. Next to go over was centre De Allende, whose effort took the Stormers past the 50-point mark. Replacements Jantjies (two) and Rikus Pretorius then scored to wrap up a comprehensive win for the Stormers in their first hit-out of the year.
The Stormers take on the Bulls in their second warm-up match on 3 February before kicking off their Super Rugby campaign against the Jaguares in Cape Town on 17 February.
Stormers – Tries: SP Marais, Chad Solomon, George Whitehead, Cobus Wiese, Juarno Augustus (2), Raymond Rhule, Damian de Allende, Herschel Jantjies (2), Rikus Pretorius. Conversions: Whitehead (5), Marais (3), Joshua Stander (3).
SWD Eagles – 15 Leighton Eksteen, 14 Marlo Weich, 13 Kirsten Heyns, 12 Tyler Fisher, 11 Adi Jacobs, 10 Robbie Petzer, 9 Dillin Snel, 8 Fabian Booysen, 7 Freginald Africa, 6 Janneman Stander(c), 5 Cornell Hess, 4 Wiehan Hay, 3 Basil Short, 2 Jacques Vermaak, 1 Teunis Nieuwoudt.
Subs: 16 Reinhardt Stears, 17 Lux Koza, 18 Vuks Sofisa, 19 Ruben Schoeman, 20 Anton Smit, 21 Wayne Wilschut, 22 Johan Steyn, 23 Aiden Joseph, 24 Divan Nel, 25 Lyle Delo, 26 Christo du Plessis, 27 Francois Kemp, 28 Logon Vorster, 29 Ganfried May, 30 Kyle Hans, 31 Brad Wanies, 32 Denver Prins.
Stormers – 15 Sergeal Petersen, 14 Raymond Rhule, 13 SP Marais, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Sihle Njezula, 10 George Whitehead, 9 Paul de Wet, 8 Juarno Augustus, 7 Cobus Wiese, 6 Steph de Wit, 5 Christopher van Zyl, 4 Salmaan Moerat, 3 Carlu Sadie, 2 Chad Solomon, 1 Alistair Vermaak.
Subs: 16 Dean Muir, 17 Jakobus Janse Van Rensburg, 18 Caylib Oosthuizen, 19 Ruben De Villiers, 20 Eduard Zandberg, 21 Luke Stringer, 22 Jacobus Van Dyk, 23 Herschel Jantjies, 24 Joshua Stander, 25 Christian Ambadiang, 26 Rikus Pretorius, 27 David Kriel, 28 Ramone Samuels, 29 Wikus Groenewald, 30 Jaco Coetzee.
Photo: Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images