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The Stormers are surely outright favourites to beat the Waratahs at Newlands tomorrow, given the home side’s run of good form and the visitor’s topsy-turvy Super Rugby season so far. This is the first game of the Waratahs’ trip away from Australasia and comes on the back of their 49-13 thumping of a weak Force side in Perth last week. Robbie Fleck’s DHL Stormers have a one point lead over the Lions at the top of the South African Group and, apart from the surprise defeat at Newlands by the Sharks in week 2, have looked unbeatable since at home. Expect Waratahs wing Rob Horne to talk up his team’s chances, but he’s also identified key reasons why the Stormers should emerge victorious. – David O’Sullivan
Cape Town – Waratahs wing Rob Horne says their Super Rugby match-up against the Stormers at Newlands will be a big challenge.
“Their (the Stormers) structure gives every individual on the field the opportunity to be a threat,” Horne told the Waratahs’ official website.
“Obviously there’s a few strike weapons there with (Cheslin) Kolbe, (Juan) de Jongh and (Damian) de Allende back so there’s plenty of talent in attack.
“There’s a lot of big boys in that pack too, and if you’re not prepared for that you could be in for strife.
“And a lot of young guys in there too, with a lot of enthusiasm so I think it’ll be one to watch for sure.”
Recently returning from a hand injury that forced him to watch from the sidelines since Round 2, Horne is back with a vengeance.
And it showed on the park last the weekend as he opened the try-scoring floodgates for the ‘Tahs in their record 49-13 bonus point victory against the Western Force.
“It’s good to be back playing, you always want to be on the field contributing. I’m just happy to be out there no matter where it is. I enjoy playing in a few positions,” Horne said.
“We’ve been doing a lot right recently. To get that result last weekend in Perth was a really special feeling, especially playing in that milestone game for Denno (Dave Dennis).
“It was just a really good feeling of satisfaction for everyone involved to be able to put that performance together.”
Complementing the Waratahs’ equally talent-rich utility backline, Horne said the team had been working collectively in an attempt to tackle each game.
“We’ve got a pretty good backs unit. We’re very interactive, we’re always talking, we’re always communicating and getting together and nutting things out so there’s not one person who’s not trying to bring it all together.
“Working together is the only way we can get better as a unit. We know we’ve got a lot of points in us, so it’s up to us on Saturday.
“As a team we’re still trying to get there. But I feel like, as a group, if the collective is functioning then doing your own job is much easier.”
Saturday’s clash is scheduled for 19:15.
15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Juan de Jongh (co-captain), 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Schalk Burger, 7 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 6 Nizaam Carr, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Rynhardt Elstadt, 3 Frans Malherbe (co-captain), 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Substitutes: 16 Scarra Ntubeni, 17 Oli Kebble, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 JD Schickerling, 20 Siya Kolisi, 21 Louis Schreuder, 22 Brandon Thomson, 23 Huw Jones
15 Andrew Kellaway, 14 Reece Robinson, 13 Israel Folau, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Rob Horne, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Jed Holloway, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Dean Mumm, 5 Will Skelton, 4 David Dennis, 3 Tom Robertson, 2 Hugh Roach, 1 Paddy Ryan
Substitutes: 16 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 17 Jeremy Tilse, 18 Angus Ta’avao, 19 Sam Lousi, 20 Wycliff Palu, 21 Matt Lucas, 22 David Horwitz, 23 Matt Carraro
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