The Stormers received a double blow on the eve of their Super 14 encounter with the Brumbies in Canberra on Saturday, with two key players set to return home with injury.
Rugby 365 reports that veteran fullback Percy Montgomery and loose forward Francois Louw have both been ruled out for the remainder of the Stormers’ Australasian tour – which will also see them take on Hurricanes and the Highlanders after this weekend’s encounter with the Brumbies.
Montgomery has succumbed to a knee injury and Louw injured his ankle in Friday’s captain’s run. Both will return home this weekend.
No replacement will be flown in for Montgomery, who was not selected to play against the Brumbies.
However, flank Pieter Louw will replace Francois Louw in the squad.
The Stormers have not yet named a replacement for Francois Louw on the bench for Saturday’s game against the Brumbies.
Springbok lock Andries Bekker has finally overcome his foot injury and will join Pieter Louw on the flight on Sunday to link up with the team in New Zealand.
Despite the latest setbacks captain Jean de Villiers said the players hope to put up a better performance this weekend – following a four defeats in five games, including both their tour matches to date.
“The guys put in a lot of effort on and off the field and we trained well this week,” De Villiers said.]
“Hopefully we will see the results in the game on Saturday. The commitment is still there from the guys and hopefully we will get a good win to lift the morale.”
The midfield maestro said it was just a matter of things falling in place before the Stormers fire at all cylinders again.
“It could be the bounce of the ball… there are so many things that have an influence on a result or a performance. Like Rassie [Erasmus, the head coach] said, it could be one pass, one great break that changes things around and suddenly the confidence is back.
“It’s like a batsman who struggles to make runs and he receives some good deliveries that are almost unplayable for a while. Then he makes a century and more follow. Hopefully we can do that and get the momentum back.”
De Villiers has a lot of respect for the Brumbies.
“From a backline point of view they have a lot of dangerous runners with the ball and they have a good backline. The Brumbies are able to retain the ball through several phases and we need to be wide awake on defence.”Tweet