CAPETOWN (Reuters) – Springbok centre Damian de Allende has returned to the starting line-up to strengthen the Stormers for Saturday’s crucial final Super Rugby regular season game against the Sharks at Newlands.
De Allende sat out last weekend’s 31-18 victory over the Sunwolves due to South Africa’s plan to rest key players at various points in the season, but has been released to feature against the Durban-based Sharks.
Coach Robbie Fleck is without stalwart forwards Siya Kolisi, Eben Etzebeth and Pieter-Steph du Toit for the remainder of the Super Rugby season, while in-form scrumhalf Herschel Jantjies, tipped for a place in the Boks’ World Cup squad, is out with a shoulder problem.
He is replaced by Jano Vermaak while fit-again winger Seabelo Senatla returns to the number 14 jersey.
Victory for either the Stormers or Sharks would ensure a quarter-final place as a wildcard entry, though Argentine side the Jaguares have secured top spot in the South African Conference.
(Reporting by Nick Said, editing by Ed Osmond)