Stormers coach Rassie Erasmus said he was not tempted to call Jean de Villiers and Andries Bekker to do duty against the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein on Saturday.
Super14.com reports that Erasmus said that since the Stormers were not contenders for this season’s Super 14 play-offs, he had decided to select the team with the view to advancing the cause of Western Province’s Currie Cup team.
“If we (Stormers) were in the running for the Super 14 play-offs, there might have been a case to push those guys through and let them play,” said Erasmus.
“But it makes more sense to look ahead to the Currie Cup season.”
In the absence of De Villiers and the injured Schalk Burger, Luke Watson has retained the captaincy.
Saturday’s Bloemfontein clash will mark veteran lock AJ Venter’s swansong. Venter, who started his senior rugby career with Free State, said he was pleased to be able to end his career where it all started.
Joe Pietersen; Gcobani Bobo, Dylan des Fountain, Peter Grant, Sireli Naqelevuki; Willem de Waal, Dewaldt Duvenage; Luke Watson (captain), Duane Vermeulen, Pieter Louw, Hilton Lobberts, AJ Venter, Brok Harris, Tiaan Liebenberg and Wicus Blaauw.
Replacements: Schalk Brits, Schalk Ferreira, Brian Mujati, Martin Muller, Ricky Januarie, Morgan Newman and Tonderai Chavhanga.