Planet Rugby

Vermeulen leads Stormers in Durban

29th May 2014 08:23

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Duane Vermeulen Stormers training SR 2014

Stand-in: Duane Vermeulen

Duane Vermeulen will captain the Stormers in Saturday's all-South African Super Rugby encounter against the Sharks in Durban.

Vermeulen will lead the team from the number eight position in the absence of Schalk Burger, who has not recovered from the knock to his neck which he sustained in last weekend's emphatic 33-0 win over the Cheetahs.

In other changes from last week, Sailosi Tagicakibau will start on the left wing, with Siya Kolisi starting in the number seven shirt in the absence of Burger.

Cheslin Kolbe, meanwhile, shifts across to the right wing in place of Kobus van Wyk who is out of action for three weeks with a wrist injury.

Argentine lock Manuel Carizza returns to the fray for the first time since the end of February, having recovered from a wrist injury, whilst fly-half Demetri Catrakilis is back in the mix for the first time since March.

Both Carizza and Catrakilis have been named on the bench, where they will be joined by debutant prop Sti Sithole, who replaces Oli Kebble.

Kebble has been ruled out of action for at least eight weeks with an ankle (syndesmosis) injury, handing Sithole (an SA Under-20 starting player last year) a great opportunity to stake his Super Rugby claim.

"Unfortunately Oli has joined our long injury list and he will miss the remainder of the 2014 Super Rugby season," said head coach Allister Coetzee.

"It's a blow for us, and the player himself, but at least we've been able to welcome back Manuel and Demetri and, of course, Sti is on the verge of his making his debut at this level which is always an exciting moment for any young player.

"It's been a tough week, with many of our players being in Durban and some injury worries with Schalk and Oli, but we've been able to name a team ahead of the weekend. It's a young team, but it's a side with plenty of enthusiasm and attitude.

"The Sharks are not the current Super Rugby log-leaders for nothing," added Coetzee.

"They've grown in confidence as the tournament has progressed and their win over the Crusaders in Christchurch says a lot about their character and state of mind.

"They're a physical side who are strong at the breakdown and who boast a good kicking game. This is, without doubt, our biggest challenge of the year."

Stormers: 15 Jaco Taute, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Damien de Allende, 11 Sailosi Tagicakibau, 10 Kurt Coleman, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Duane Vermeulen (c), 7 Siya Kolisi, 6 Nizaam Carr, 5 Ruan Botha, 4 Michael Rhodes, 3 Pat Cilliers, 2 Deon Fourie, 1 Alistair Vermaak
Replacements: 16 Stephan Coetzee, 17 Sti Sithole, 18 Martin Dreyer, 19 Jean Kleyn, 20 Manuel Carizza, 21 Dylon Frylinck, 22 Demetri Catrakilis, 23 Peter Grant

Date: Saturday, May 31
Venue: Kings Park, Durban
Kickoff: 19:10 (local, 17:10 GMT)
Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa)
Assistant Referees: Stuart Berry, Stefan Breytenbach
TMO: Johan Greeff

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