Rudolph Jacobs
Rugby Journalist
1 minute read
16 Jan 2015
2:28 pm

Coetzee happy with his choices

Rudolph Jacobs

Stormers coach Allister Coetzee expressed his satisfaction with the naming of new captain Duane Vermeulen and centre Juan de Jongh as his deputy on Friday.

New Stormers captain Duane Vermeulen, Allister Coetzee and vice captain Juan de Jongh during the DHL Stormers training session and press conference at Hermanus Primary School on January 16, 2015 in Hermanus, South Africa. (Photo by Carl Fourie/Gallo Images)

Last year Coetzee was proven right with the surprising naming of De Jongh as Currie Cup skipper as the team went ahead to capture the crown.

“We have a very, very young playing squad – both Duane and Juan are young leaders themselves, but they are the right men to take this team forward in the absence of Jean de Villiers (who is injured) and with Schalk Burger joining us only when his Japanese club commitments come to an end.”

De Villiers will miss the entire campaign while Burger could miss at least the opening match against the Bulls in Pretoria on February 14.

“Both Duane and Juan are long-time and key members of the Stormers playing squad,” Coetzee said.

“They know the culture well and will inspire those around them in what is the toughest provincial competition in world rugby,” he said.

The Stormers spent the past few days on camp in Hermanus, a 38-man group having done some team-building activities on Wednesday and stepping up their on-field training with a double session on Thursday.

There are six new faces in the Stormers’ pre-season group, two of whom are still Under-21 and four of whom have graduated from the 2014 league-topping Western Province Under-21 side.

“It might appear daunting for us, but it also gives us an opportunity to build some more depth in the process, which we were able to do during last season when new, young Stormers players like Alistair Vermaak, Ruan Botha, Kobus van Wyk and Cheslin Kolbe – to name a few – all emerged strongly during the Super Rugby season.”

The Stormers first home game is against the Blues, at Newlands, on Saturday, February 21.