Craig Barry
Craig Barry

The Stormers go into their crucial Super Rugby encounter against the Reds at Newlands without influential fullback Dillyn Leyds.

The Springbok playmaker suffered a grade one calf muscle tear during training on Monday and has been left out this weekend, but should be ready to play again next Saturday.

Craig Barry‚ who made his Stormers debut off the bench against the Blues last weekend‚ will start at fullback in one of four changes to the side that won 37-20. The Stormers‚ who have had three away games in their first five‚ need to win this weekend before another run of three away games‚ to keep their 2018 play-off hopes alive.

"It’s a tough one to lose Dillyn because he has been playing well and was also looking forward to another game at fullback. It’s unfortunate for Dillyn to miss out this week‚ but it does give Craig Barry an opportunity," coach Robbie Fleck said.

In the loose trio Cobus Wiese is back at blindside flank‚ which means Pieter-Steph du Toit shifts across to lock with Chris van Zyl among the replacements. In the front row JC Janse van Rensburg will start at loosehead prop in a rotational switch with Steven Kitshoff.

Tighthead prop Carlu Sadie and looseforwards Kobus van Dyk and Sikhumbuzo Notshe are also back in the match day squad after illness. Centre Damian de Allende‚ who played despite feeling ill last weekend‚ participated in his first full training session on Thursday.

"It was important to give Cobus Wiese another start after recovering from the flu because he was outstanding against the Crusaders in New Zealand. Steven Kitshoff has to be managed and this is a purely rotational decision," Fleck said.

Captain Siya Kolisi has challenged his team to show consistency with a repeat performance of their strong display against the Blues last week.

"We have prepared the same and so it comes down to mentally making sure we are switched on‚" Kolisi said.

"Last week we had many disruptions but we were mentally switched on and this week our preparation has been much smoother‚ so we have to make sure that mentally we are at the same level.

"The Reds are a physical side‚ which makes them slightly different from the other Aussie teams. It will be about stopping momentum and winning the set piece battle."