The Stormers team lineup for their match against the Leicester Tigers. Photo: Stormers website.

Manie missing as Stormers back rookie flyhalf

Jurie Matthee will make his Stormers debut in the absence of Manie Libbok in the Cape side’s Champions Cup clash against the Leicester Tigers.


The Stormers team lineup for their match against the Leicester Tigers. Photo: Stormers website.

The Stormers will face the Leicester Tigers for the first time in their Champions Cup opener at Welford Road on Sunday.

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Experienced prop Brok Harris will lead the team in Leicester, with kick-off on Sunday at 17h15 (SAST).

Clayton Blommeties is at fullback and is joined in the back three by two wings who have experience playing in England in Courtnall Skosan and Ben Loader.

Suleiman Hartzenberg makes his first start of the season at outside centre, forming a midfield partnership with Jean-Luc du Plessis, while Matthee will link up with scrumhalf Paul de Wet for the Stormers.

No 8 Keke Morabe will have flanks Willie Engelbrecht and Nama Xaba on either side of him, while there are also first starts this season for locks Hendre Stassen and Connor Evans.

The Stormers front row sees Harris joined by experienced hooker Scarra Ntubeni and loosehead Sti Sithole.

There are also first appearances this season for hooker JJ Kotze, loose forward Junior Pokomela and centre Cornel Smit on the replacements bench.

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Stormers Head Coach John Dobson said that his team is looking forward to the challenge.

“Welford Road is a renowned rugby venue with a lot of history and we are determined to impress as the first Stormers team to play there.

“It has been something of a balancing act given the six-day turnaround before our home game next week, but we are excited to see how this team performs on the big stage,” he said.

Following the clash in Leicester the Stormers will be back on home turf for four consecutive Summer Sundowner matches at DHL Stadium.

They face back-to-back Champions Cup winners Stade Rochelais on 16 December ahead of United Rugby Championship derbies against the Bulls (23 December) and Hollywoodbets Sharks 30 December) before taking on the Sale Sharks on 13 January.

Stormers: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Courtnall Skosan, 13 Suleiman Hartzenberg, 12 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 11 Ben Loader, 10 Jurie Matthee, 9 Paul de Wet, 8 Keke Morabe, 7 Willie Engelbrecht, 6 Nama Xaba, 5 Connor Evans, 4 Hendre Stassen, 3 Brok Harris (captain), 2 Scarra Ntubeni, 1 Sti Sithole.
Subs: 16: JJ Kotze, 17 Kwenzo Blose, 18 Lee-Marvin Mazibuko, 19 Dylan Sjoblom, 20 Junior Pokomela, 21 Marcel Theunissen, 22 Stefan Ungerer, 23 Cornel Smit.

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Stormers, Clayton Blommetjies
Stormers outside back Clayton Blommetjies. Photo: BackpagePix.