Stormers assistant coach Gary Gold says they are not panicking about playoff permutations ahead Saturday’s crucial clash against the Waratahs in Sydney.
Rugby 365 reports that the Stormers are currently in tenth position on the Super 14 standings and they are yet to win back-to-back matches in this year’s tournament. The Cape franchise will be hoping to emulate their 2008 form by turning their season around on the Australasian leg of the competition.
However, Gold stressed that the Stormers don’t view the Waratahs match as a must-win one.
“No, all we can do is concentrate on the next game and we cannot get carried away by how many games we must win. We will try as hard as last week and the week before when we won by almost 50 points,” Gold said in an interview on the Stormers’ website.
“I would be quite worried if the focus is elsewhere and anywhere but the job on hand. Saturday night is all we are worried about right now.
“I have a clear recollection that last year we were in the same situation and we won a few games on the trot and the next thing we were semi-final contenders.
“Funny things can happen and if the Bulls do not win a game on tour they could be in the same situation.”
Gold said that the mood in the Stormers camp is good and the players and management have put the defeat to the Crusaders behind them and are looking forward to Saturday’s match.
While Gold is wary to place too much emphasis on beating the Waratahs, this game is crucial as it could determine the Stormers’ fate in this year’s Super 14.
The Stormers performed well below standard against the Crusaders in Christchurch and will be looking for huge improvement this Saturday.
“All of us were very disappointed after the game, but there is no time to celebrate or mourn for too long in this competition.
“We put that in the past and at training everything went well. The mood in the camp is good and we are looking forward to a good performance on Saturday.”
Wing Wylie Human has joined the team in Sydney after scoring two tries for Western Province against Boland last weekend. Gold stressed that the call-up of the veteran wing was on merit and form alone.
“Sireli [Naqelevuki] had a bad bump in Saturday’s game and we had to make a decision immediately after the game. We could not wait until Wednesday and Rassie [Erasmus] made an executive decision quickly. Sereli was in a lot of pain and we felt the need to bring in a replacement.
“We only came on tour with 24 guys. Wylie is playing great rugby at the moment and when a player is playing well he needs to be rewarded. It makes sense.”Tweet