Sport / Rugby

Ross Roche
Senior sports writer
3 minute read
9 Oct 2021
8:54 am

Stormers, De Jongh hoping for happy 100 against Edinburgh

Ross Roche

“It is a massive honour for me to be a part of this group (100 cap group)," said the veteran centre.

Juan de Jongh of the Stormers will be hoping it's a happy hundred against Edinburgh. Picture: Steve Haag/Gallo Images

Stormers centre Juan de Jongh is set to make his hundredth appearance when he takes to the field in their United Rugby Championship clash against Edinburgh on Saturday.

The 33-year old veteran featured 97 times for the Stormers between his debut in 2010 and 2017 when he left to join Wasps for three seasons before returning to the Stormers this year, allowing him to reach the auspicious milestone joining other Stormers greats such as Siya Kolisi, Schalk Burger and Jean de Villiers.

“It is a massive honour for me to be a part of this group (100 cap group), it took a couple of years to get there since I made my debut in 2010 but it’s exciting times for me,” said De Jongh.

“It has been a tough long journey with a lot of hard work and ups and downs, but I am really excited for this opportunity that comes tomorrow and I am looking forward to the game.”

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The Stormers will be hoping to give De Jongh the perfect gift for the occasion with their first win of their URC campaign as they take on an Edinburgh team that is also yet to pick up a win in the competition.

After losing to Benetton Rugby in their opening game, the Stormers put in a much improved performance last weekend and they will be aiming to build on that with an even better showing against Edinburgh.

“We have shown glimpses of what we are capable of already on this tour and the challenge now is to sustain that intensity throughout the match,” said Stormers coach John Dobson.

“It has been another week of hard work and we are excited to see what this team can do out there on Saturday.”

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The Stormers will hope their much changed backline, that features five changes from the Munster match along with one in the forwards, will be able to give them the spark to pick up a vital win over Edinburgh.

De Jongh is part of a new centre pairing along with Rikus Pretorius as they replace Ruhan Nel, who drops out of the match 23, and Dan du Plessis who drops to the bench, while a new halfback pairing of Paul de Wet at scrumhalf, in for the injured Stefan Ungerer, and Tim Swiel in for Manie Libbock who drops to the bench.

Edwill van der Merwe rounds out the backline changes returning to the team from injury as Leolin Zas drops out of the squad, while in the forwards Ernst van Rhyn comes in at lock for Adre Smith who has been cited.

Stormers: Warrick Gelant, Sergeal Petersen, Juan de Jongh, Rikus Pretorius, Edwill van der Merwe, Tim Swiel, Paul de Wet, Evan Roos, Willie Engelbrecht, Nama Xaba, Salmaan Moerat, Ernst van Rhyn, Neethling Fouche, Scarra Ntubeni, Brok Harris.
Bench: JJ Kotze, Kwenzo Blose, Sazi Sandi, Justin Basson, Marcel Theunissen, Godlen Masimla, Manie Libbok, Dan du Plessis