Ross Roche
Senior sports writer
2 minute read
1 May 2022
6:23 pm

Bonus point ‘makes no difference’ as Stormers prepare for playoffs

Ross Roche

Despite the result, the Stormers are still well placed to finish second on the log.

Leolin Zas in action for the Stormers against Leinster. Picture: Gallo Images

The Stormers were not too fazed about missing out on a winning bonus point after they were made to work hard by an understrength Leinster team for their 20-13 win on Saturday.

The home side outscored the visitors three tries to one, but missed a host of chances to claim the bonus point try, and ended up being pushed all the way in the match.

The result sees them slip from second on the table to fourth, behind Munster and the Sharks, but all three sides are locked on 56 points with just points difference and other things separating them.

The losing bonus point for Leinster, who chose to take on their South African tour without a host of regulars due to their packed schedule competing on two fronts, also meant they sealed top spot on the log with a game to play.

ALSO READ: Stormers narrowly edge Leinster: Three talking points

“It was a bit anticlimactic because I thought some of the errors that we made, whether it was discipline or lineout, we could have got the fourth try. I’m not disappointed with the performance or the effort,” admitted Stormers coach John Dobson.

“We knew we were going to be in for a hard game, but some of those penalties that we conceded and then those three lineouts in their 22m which we didn’t capitalise on.

“I think that’s where the anticlimactic feel comes in. But also from our own standards of where we want to grow, so it’s quite a good reflection of this group that coming off that result against ‘Leinster B’ it feels like we are walking in after a loss.”

Despite the result the Stormers are still very well placed to possibly finish in second spot on the log, if they can do the business in their final match of the pool stage in just under three weeks’ time.

Munster, currently in second, face a potentially full strength Leinster at the Aviva Stadium in their final pool game, while the third placed Sharks face a massive challenge away against Ulster, who are lurking just outside of the top four.

The Stormers will still have to be in top form if they want to get a full house of points away against ninth placed Scarlets who are out of the running for the playoffs, due to having a vastly inferior point’s difference to eighth placed Edinburgh.

“The upside is we are in the playoffs now and we are reasonably well placed to get into Europe, so not getting the bonus point makes no difference really,” said Dobson.

“The Sharks still have to go to Ulster and get a win and we have to try and get five points against Scarlets in our last game, so if we can get the result that we want to get against Scarlets we will probably finish second.”