SA latest – Stormers reinstate Aplon, Duvenage

Keo.co.za brings you news from South Africa’s Super Rugby franchises.

Stormers reinstate Aplon, Duvenage – Gio Aplon has replaced Conrad Jantjes while Dewaldt Duvenage is preferred over Ricky Januarie for the Stormers’ match against the Highlanders.

Word from the Stormers’ camp is that Jantjes is battling an Achilles injury, but he may have been dropped regardless. Januarie has been axed following two poor performances against the Lions and Cheetahs.

Stormers – 15 Gio Aplon, 14 Danie Poolman, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Jean de Villiers (c), 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Peter Grant, 9 Dewaldt Duvenage, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Francois Louw, 6 Pieter Louw, 5 Andries Bekker, 4 Rynhardt Elstadt, 3 Brok Harris, 2 Deon Fourie, 1 CJ van der Linde.
Subs: 16 Siyabonga Ntubeni, 17 Frans Malherbe, 18 De Kock Steenkamp, 19 Nick Koster, 20 Ricky Januarie, 21 Gary van Aswegen, 22 Jaque Fourie.

Kockott to start for Lions – With Jano Vermaak struggling with a head injury, scrumhalf Rory Kockott is set to get his first start against the Cheetahs this weekend.

Vermaak suffered a blow to the head during the Lions’ defeat to the Blues last weekend and head coach John Mitchell indicated that it’s unlikely he will risk his first-choice No 9 in the starting line-up on Saturday.

This should see Kockott feature in the run-on side. Vermaak is still set to be part of the match 22.

No Brüssow for Cheetahs – Heinrich Brüssow won’t be rushed into making his Super Rugby return for the Cheetahs this weekend.

There were talks of the openside flanker – who recently recovered from a year-long knee injury – featuring against the Lions this weekend, but head coach Naka Drotske has decided he will play his third match for the Vodacom Cup side instead.

Meanwhile, interim skipper and flyhalf Naas Olivier is set to be dropped for the match in Bloemfontein. Sias Ebersohn is expected to start at pivot while centre Andries Strauss and flanker Frans Viljoen are strong candidates to takeover as captain.

Jantjes concern for Stormers – Fullback Conrad Jantjes could miss the Stormers’ clash with the Highlanders this weekend as he struggles with a stiff Achilles.

Jantjes picked up the injury after the win over the Cheetahs last Saturday. This could see Gio Aplon replace the former in the No 15 jumper. However, it was likely that Jantjes would’ve been dropped for this weekend’s clash in any case as he has struggled with form this season.

Tighthead prop Brok Harris (wrist) is also an injury concern and JC Kritzinger has been brought into the training squad as cover.