Stormers warm up with 14-try rout
Coach Fleck has problems behind the scenes to sort out ahead of the Super Rugby season
A team calling itself the Stormers‚ but one that will look a lot different when coach Robbie Fleck chooses all his first team players‚ ran in 14 tries in its first Super Rugby warm-up match.
The match was played over two chukkas of 20 minutes in sweltering heat against False Bay Rugby Club and a Combined Club XV, respectively, and it proved little more than just a contact training session.
Fleck was happy with the outcome though some of the issues for him and the union appear to be playing themselves out off the field.
The situation with assistant coach Paul Treu has not been resolved after he laid a formal complaint in 2018 that he had been treated poorly and had his role diminished.
An independent investigation by law firm Bowmans found no substance to the allegations of unfair discrimination or unfair labour practice. The comprehensive final report made no negative or adverse findings against any Western Province Rugby officers‚ coaches or staff members.
The situation though is not over as Treu is still officially on the Stormers staff and there are unconfirmed reports that some of the players are pushing for him to be removed.
Against this backdrop Fleck is trying to prepare for a campaign where the Stormers need to excel after years of under-performance.
“The purpose of this match against the combined clubs was for the guys to have a hit out and see where their conditioning is‚” Fleck said. “It was tough in the heat but we have to get through these tough conditions. It is something you have to deal with and it takes the guys out of their comfort zone.
“We are pushing the guys to see how good their conditioning is and I was happy to see them get up off the ground and keep going. We will introduce a number of Springbok tourists‚ who were on the November tour but didn’t play‚ in the next outing. But the Boks who have played a lot of rugby won’t be used yet.”