Stormers high Hurricanes pack

GettyImages 1185145310


Kitshoff told South Africa media on Monday he was confident the Springboks in the Stormers side would boost the team's effort this year.


"We definitely have the pack that can put any team under pressure…when it comes to lineouts, mauling and scrummaging…I really think we have the personnel in our camp to make our mark, especially against the Hurricanes and for the remainder of Super Rugby.


"I think if you make them [the Hurricanes] turn around and play backwards, then you take their big outside backs out of the game," he said.


World Cup winning Springboks forwards are: Kitshoff, captain and flanker Siya Kolisi, flanker and World Rugby player of the year Pieter-Steph du Toit, prop Frans Malherbe and hooker Bongi Mbonambi.


Collectively the internationals try to add as much value as possible to the side.


"We still have a young team so I think all the experience and knowledge the Boks got [at the World Cup] will make a big contribution to the team's success," he said.


Kitshoff was confident that scrummaging issues exposed by the Sharks in their warm-up game would be sorted come game time.


"Yes, we did struggle a bit, but we've talked about it and worked on it and I think we can only look ahead from here. You can never take the warm-up games' results as stock-standard but I think the guys have worked really hard over the past two weeks to get the confidence and dominance back," he said.


The Hurricanes had a big, strong pack, he said.


"They're not the most aggressive scrummagers I've seen but they do have a good platform from which they play and they try and get their loose forwards into the game as quick as possible. And on the other side, they also try to dominate in loose play with their flanks," he said.


The Stormers won't have locks Cobus Wiese and JD Schikerling in their pack due to injury.


Meanwhile, new Stormers coach John Dobson told the Financial Mail that he was optimistic for the side in 2020.


"We've got a reasonable draw; we're not travelling too early. I think seven of our first 10 games are at home. We then obviously have some momentum with the World Cup-winning Springboks we've managed to retain, which is great," he said.


It will the last season the side play at Newlands as they move to Cape Town Stadium from next year.


"I know the guys will have mixed emotions about the future, but like anything, it is sad for us to say goodbye. But the emotions can serve you in a positive way. I think we have a great pack and we've got some really exciting backs, so it looks like a classic old-fashioned sort of WP [Western Province] and Stormers team.


"Hopefully, we can use our forward power to get us some momentum and space for our backs," he said.


View all