South Africa: Stormers Young Guns Impress Dobson

Cape Town — Following their 21-19 Super Hero Sunday win over the Sharks, Stormers coach John Dobson was impressed by the performances of the youngsters in the side but left frustrated with the efforts of his forward pack.

"I was a bit frustrated towards the end of the first half, because we just weren't working how we should have in the forwards," Dobson told the Stormers' official website.

"I thought our maul defence was poor and we need some clarity, we just haven't worked hard enough with them. I was also disappointed with that scrum penalty we gave away in the first half, but by the end I was very happy.

"It is unlikely that any of the guys on the field at the end will start our first game, but the way we finished was very impressive."

Springbok scrumhalf Herschel Jantjies scored a brace of tries and combined well with Damian Willemse at halfback.

"Herschel is becoming a talisman in our side, our job for the good of the franchise and South African rugby, is to make sure that him and Damian form a real understanding, because I think that is the future potentially," Dobson added.

There were a number of other players that caught the eye at FNB Stadium, with the youngsters in particular impressing the coach.

"Kwenzo Blose at loosehead was outstanding when he came on. David Meihuizen who played fifth team at Paarl Boys High even though he is 2.08 metres tall, caught and won every lineout.

"Godlen Masimla, who I talked up a few years ago, showed plenty of hunger when he came on. Jean-Luc (Du Plessis) also made a bit of a difference when he came on the field. Then Ruhan Nel, for a guy whose last contact was Cape Town Sevens, there were a lot of good individual performances," he said.

One player who does not lack experience is Sergeal Petersen, who was impressive under the high ball and in open space. His performance left Dobson encouraged by the depth of strike power the Stormers have out wide.

"I don't think there is anybody better out of the air, he (Petersen) is not the biggest guy but we probably rate him our number one winger. He is exceptional, we are really blessed there because Leolin Zas was outstanding in the rain in Knysna against the Kings on Friday. Then with Edwill (van der Merwe) and Seabelo (Senatla) we have got real depth there," he said.

A young Stormers outfit went down 13-3 to the Kings last Friday. The Cape franchise will kick off their 2020 Super Rugby campaign off against the Hurricanes at Newlands on Saturday, February 1.

- The Stormers

Source: Sport24

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