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Stormers player ratings vs Glasgow | 2023/24 URC quarter-finals

By Philip Bendon
Herschel Jantjies

Stormers player ratings: The DHL Stormers travelled to Scotstoun Stadium in search of a third consecutive semi-final space.

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Instead, they will return to Cape Town, ruing a missed opportunity as they were defeated by the Glasgow Warriors 27 – 10.

Here is how John Dobson’s players performed in their final match of the 2023/24 season.

1. Brok Harris – 4
The veteran loosehead had a real tussle with Scotland international Zander Fagerson at scrum time. Unfortunately for the Stormers, he seemed to come out second best more often than not.

2. Joseph Dweba – 5
Although he ended his shift on the pitch having made double-digit tackles, the Springbok hooker will be frustrated with his outing. He struggled to get to grips with the stiff breeze as his line-out throwing became a crapshoot before being replaced early in the second half.

3. Frans Malherbe – 6
Clearly relished the challenging conditions as he went to work against Jamie Bhatti. Seeming to get underneath and twist the Scottish international, Malherbe more than held up his side of the scrum. Around the park, however, the 33-year-old had little impact as a carrier but did his fair share of work at the breakdown.

4. Salmaan Moerat  – 6
Leading from the front, the skipper had some key defensive moments as well as some nice touches. His yellow card was avoidable, to say the least, as he completely misjudged his challenge both in terms of body angle and timing.

5. Ruben van Heerden – 7
The strongest carrier in the pack for the Stormers today, the 26-year-old had a top-notch outing on both sides of the ball.

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6. Willie Engelbrecht – 6
The unheralded veteran in the pack, Engelbrecht, had a workman-like performance, having already made double-figure tackles by early in the second half.

7. Ben-Jason Dixon – 7
Continuing to grow his reputation as a hard-hitting ‘bone collector’, the utility forward’s work ethic was phenomenal. Setting him up in the midfield from line-outs as a gain line breaker was the Stormer’s most effective yard-gaining tactic.

8. Hacjivah Dayimani – 7
Renowned for his roaming running game, Dayimani’s breakdown work stood out today. Completing a pair of key turnovers in the first half and routinely cleaning up loose ball, the Racing 92 bound man filled the void left by the industrious Deon Fourie.

9. Herschel Jantjies – 6
The nippy scrumhalf had it all to do in the face of a relentless breakdown onslaught by the warriors who were flying into the ruck all match. Not quite finding his well renowned running game will disappoint him although this had more to do with the Warriors incredible defensive shift.

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10. Manie Libbok – 4
Few players in World Rugby are as hot and cold as the mercurial Stormers playmaker, who had a disastrous evening from the kicking tee. Leaving behind ten points whilst lacking his usual attacking spark really cost his team.

11. Ben Loader – 6
One of those nuts and bolts kind of evenings for the former London Irish flyer as he chased kicks, made his tackles and cleared up the backfield efficiently. His efforts would be rewarded with a well-taken try in the left-hand corner, but outside of this, there were no highlight reel moments.

12. Sacha Feinberg-Mngomezulu – 6
Exploded into action following a quiet opening thirty minutes, his probing kicks and offloads poke holes in a stingy Warriors defence. Finding a moment of magic to put Loader over in the corner was a snippet of just why he is so highly touted in South African Rugby circles.

13. Dan du Plessis – 4
Really struggled to contain the Scottish international pair of Tuipulotu and Jones who both had joy going down his channel. On the other side of the ball he made little impact on the Warriors gain line in what was a disappointing outing for the usually potent centre.

14. Suleiman Hartzenberg – 7
Once again, the main threat in the Stormer’s backline, Hartzenberg’s willingness to go looking for work, was evident. Winning the aerial battle and getting over the gainline a few times sealed an overall solid effort for the Stormers’ most improved player this season.

15. Warrick Gelant – 6
Generally handled the wet and slippery conditions well as he contended with a bombardment of testing kicks from the Warriors before returning fire. His kicking game at the line gave the Stormers some much-needed field position, but ultimately, they failed to capitalise on it.

Replacements:

16 Andre-Hugo Venter – 5
Had some good moments with the ball in hand, but like the man he replaced, his line-out throwing was inconsistent and cost his team a late opportunity to get back into the match.

17 Sti Sithole – 5
Trotting out for a fifteen-minute cameo, Sithole seemed to struggle to get up to the pace of the game as he conceded a scrum penalty nearly immediately.

18 Neethling Fouche – 6
Brought great energy from the bench as a willing carrier but endured a mixed bag at scrum time.

19 Adre Smith – 5
An industrious showing from the lock without really having too much impact on the game either way.

20 Marcel Theunissen – 5
Replaced Engelbrecht with half an hour to play and had some nice moments in the carry but ultimately was on defensive duty for the bulk of his time on the park.

21 Connor Evans – N/A
Too little time on the pitch to rate.

22 Paul de Wet – 8
Began his evening in the 62nd minute and scored three minutes later as he sniped through a gap in the uncharacteristically stretched Warrior’s defence. Minutes later, he would scrag a rampaging Tom Jordan to stop a certain try for the Warriors. Overall, he upped the Stormer’s tempo, but by that stage, the pack began to lose parity with their hosts.

23 Jean-Luc du Plessis. – 4
Very quiet from the replacement who didn’t have the influence of the man he replaced.

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M
Mzilikazi 53 minutes ago
Is Ireland versus South Africa a battle for the title of ‘world champions’?

Very good article, Nic, and I find agreement with what you write virtually 100%. I think this two mach series has increasingly become one which will be very difficult for Ireland to win. After the first game of the last 6N, I would have been very full of confidence taking on the Boks in SA. France beaten by a big margin in France, it looked as if Ireland had emerged in fine form from the World Cup, despite the very narrow loss to the AB’s. But after that game, a slide began, ending with the defeat to England. Ireland were very fortunate to win this years 6N ! And as you so fully expose, this has not been a good season for Leinster, or indeed, in my view, for any Irish province. The Leinster loos to the Bulls, and then Munster letting a glorious chance slip to the Glasgow Warriors down at Thomond. Man, that one will really hurt. And both Connacht and Ulster have at times looked very poor this seaso, bith heavily beaten on occassion. The loss of both Gibson Park and Keenan are huge blows, especially Gibson Park. And there is really only one clear class 10 in the touring party, Jack Crowley, and he is still a very young player learning his trade. If he goes down, heaven help Ireland. And in my view, Ireland do not have a good scrummaging front row, SA do, and in great depth too. But despite all this doom and gloom, I always believe my team can win. Not that they will win, just can ! Ireland will still field what is the best and most talented team overall that I have seen in my lifetime. But the coaching group will really have to step up, no awful decisions like the one made against the AB’s in the QF….keeping the totally spent and poorly performing(on the day) Sexton on for the full 80mins, leaving Crowley on the sidelines. Ireland should never have lost that game !

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S
Shaylen 3 hours ago
Is Ireland versus South Africa a battle for the title of ‘world champions’?

Ireland have all the tools required to hurt SA. They develop quick ball, hold onto the ball for long periods, stretch the game when its on, have powerful mobile forwards, a good kicking game and they can hold their own in the scrum. They also can force turnovers regularly and in general do well at the breakdown. When Munster, the Ospreys and Glasgow all won games in SA this year against the Bulls and Stormers they did just that and won. It is also the reason why Ireland won the game at the world cup last year. The problem for Ireland is that SA have all the tools required to hurt them as well and hurt them a great deal more than England did in the Six Nations. They are physical and powerful at the set piece, they rush up and counter the Irish attacking system and they can really attack the breakdown and slow your ball down. Their counterattacking threat is also a big weapon and they score many tries from turnover turning defence into offence in a second. Toulouse and the Bulls nailed Leinster in this way and Glasgow did the same thing to Munster. So the series will be really interesting because both sides are so good at countering each other. Interested to see what kind of surprises Tony Brown springs and how the SA game develops. Feel like SA have more potential to surprise Ireland but then a new coaching set up as well as the fact that Japanese and foreign based players tend to take about 5 to 6 weeks to get up to speed might work in Irelands favour. SA have shipped at least one game in 4 of the last 5 June/July test windows going back to 2018 for this exact reason.

52 Go to comments
F
Flankly 5 hours ago
'Let them keep talking' - Mike Catt claps back over Bok remarks

The comments were reported weirdly. De Allende did say it would be war, but he said it amidst comments like “Ireland play such good footy”, and “they are so good at the breakdown”. He said that the Boks lost heavily to Ireland a few years back and that they felt the Irish press was dismissive of the Boks. I don’t recall that, but I suppose it is true, and that SA players would want to turn around that sentiment. The RWC loss to Ireland would naturally pour fuel on the fire. In short, it is a natural thing for passionate players like him to feel very strongly about the goal of registering a convincing series win against Ireland. There is really nothing to see here. As an aside, the SA team shouldn’t be too self-righteous about this kind of a situation. Recall that in 2004, after SA won the Ireland series in SA, Jake White noted that no more than two Irish players were good enough for selection in his Bok side. "Considering the facts, I think only two of their players would be included in the Bok team - O'Driscoll (centre) and maybe one of the locks. How could we have lost against the Irish?" O’Driscoll disagreed and said that it was close, and Ireland were just tired. My Irish friends were pretty incensed by the comments, quite rightly. And I am sure it was part of the energy that drove them to some famous wins against the Boks. The Etzebeth thing was a little different. I think he was just not hearing what was being said. It is not that unusual for someone to say “We will see you in the final”. Of course it is a statement of confidence, which every team should have, but it is also a compliment. I think there was a cultural fly-by, in which a “see you soon” comment was taken to mean “we will beat you again”. But it was a good story, and a convenient clickbaity headline. I don’t think anyone is intentionally trying to rile up anything. But if you interview a Bok player and prod them about their passion wrt the Ireland tour, you are likely to hear some pretty heartfelt words. And so you should.

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