Stormers withstand determined Reds

24 Apr 2016
Stormers withstand determined Reds

The Stormers secured their sixth victory of the Super Rugby season on Saturday as they saw off the Reds, winning 40-22 at Newlands.

Kobus van Wyk, Leolin Zas, Nic Groom and Vincent Koch scored their tries, with the boots of Jean-Luc du Plessis and Brandon Thomson adding key points that kept the Reds, who crossed the whitewash three times, at arm's length.

Liam Gill, Karmichael Hunt and Eto Nabuli were the Reds' scorers, but they would leave Newlands empty handed, with the hosts too strong.

The Reds were looking to back up last week's impressive home victory over the Highlanders with a another positive showing in Cape Town.

However, the visitors were 14-3 adrift after a quarter of the game, despite having hit the front in the third minute through the boot of fly-half Jake McIntyre. Those three points arrived after McIntyre's opposite number, Du Plessis, had failed to roll away in the tackle area.

Then came an excellent spell for the Stormers as their first try arrived in the tenth minute when wing Van Wyk strolled over, this after a near-intercept from McIntyre five metres from the line. That try meant it was 7-3 to the hosts, with another seven points on its way.

Van Wyk's wing partner Zas was the recipient when he dummied off the back of a ruck a metre out before reaching out to make it 14-3.

The Reds clawed themselves back into the contest five minutes later though when flanker Gill used his power from close range to go over. But with Du Plessis slotting three points on 32 minutes, the visitors would head into the dressing rooms seven points adrift at Newlands.

That lead was wiped out inside ten minutes of the second-half as the Reds came out firing, first through full-back Hunt, who was sent in for a try on the left by number eight Curtis Browning, and then McIntyre was the provider for wing Nabuli soon after. The Reds led 17-22.

The incredible turnaround did not last long, however, as scrum-half Groom, playing in his 50th match for the Stormers, fought his way to the line to push his side back in front. It was a frantic third quarter that set up a grandstand finish in ideal conditions in Cape Town.

The Stormers were smart in their quest for more points and instead of pushing for tries they instead looked to replacement fly-half Brandon Thomson to accumulate the total, which he did in the 66th, 70th and 74th minute.

And just to add the gloss, tighthead prop Koch would sprint over the whitewash in added time to send the watching crowd home delighted.

The scorers:

For Stormers:
Tries: Van Wyk, Zas, Groom, Koch
Con: Du Plessis 3, Thomson
Pen: Du Plessis, Thomson 3

For Reds:
Tries: Gill, Hunt, Nabuli
Con: McIntyre 2
Pen: McIntyre

Stormers: 15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Johnny Kotze, 12 Damian de Allende (c), 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Siya Kolisi, 6 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Rynhardt Elstadt, 3 Vincent Koch, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Oli Kebble
Replacements: 16 Mike Willemse, 17 JC Janse van Rensburg, 18 JP Smith, 19 JD Schickerling, 20 Schalk Burger, 21 Louis Schreuder, 22 Huw Jones, 23 Brandon Thomson

Reds: 15 Karmichael Hunt, 14 Junior Laloifi, 13 Samu Kerevi, 12 Anthony Fainga'a, 11 Eto Nabuli, 10 Jake McIntyre, 9 Nick Frisby, 8 Curtis Browning, 7 Liam Gill, 6 Hendrik Tui, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Ben Matwijow, 3 Greg Holmes, 2 Andrew Ready, 1 James Slipper (c)
Replacements: 16 Saia Fainga'a, 17 Sef Fa'agase, 18 Sam Talakai, 19 Cadeyrn Neville, 20 Michael Gunn, 21 James Tuttle, 22 Duncan Paia’aua, 23 Ayumu Goromaru

Referee: Marius van der Westhuizen
Assistant Referees: Quinton Immelman, Cwengile Jadezweni
TMO: Shaun Veldsman