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Big things predicted for Stormers flanker

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Monday, March 5, 2018    Getty Images

Stormers coach Robbie Fleck is in no doubt that his 20-year-old flanker Cobus Wiese has Springbok written all over him, especially after the strength of his display against the Crusaders in Investec Super Rugby in Christchurch at the weekend.

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"He was our man of the match. He was outstanding," Fleck said.

"For a 20-year-old to deliver a performance like that in New Zealand…he was absolutely everywhere and he stuck his hand up as a potential Springbok.

"It was an outstanding performance physically, emotionally and just with his work rate around the park," he said.

Wiese carried the ball 14 times and beat four defenders and he topped the Stormers' tackle list with 15 tackles.

However, Wiese may have to change his approach a little as injuries could force him to be considered for a locking role.

One of the casualties of the Stormers game was lock JD Schickerling who tore a bicep and is likely to be out of action for 12 weeks while Pieter-Steph du Toit had a head knock but is expected to recover. He passed his concussion test but will still have to go through the protocols before he is totally cleared.

Wiese will also have to recover from his own shoulder injury suffered against the Crusaders.

"He is hurting, and he is a bit sore at the moment. He didn't train today [Monday]," Fleck told supersport.com. "Cobus may struggle to be ready but we would want him to play if he is so we will give him until as late as possible to prove his fitness."



However, the loss of Schickerling was a big blow for the side.

"JD was in outstanding form and was particularly outstanding at the weekend against the Crusaders. I thought that together with Cobus Wiese he delivered an unbelievable performance. His work rate and brutality around the park was exceptional and he was playing against three All Black locks.

"It is a very unfortunate thing that happened as it happened in the last scrum of the match. It was a no-win situation for him when his arm got caught up when the scrum collapsed when we were trying to force our way across the line," Fleck said.

The loss to the Crusaders had been disappointing, he said.

"It was one of those games where you didn't quite know what to think, for while we made stupid mistakes to allow them to take a big early lead, we did things later on that were encouraging.

"The Crusaders played with a strong wind behind them in the first half and we reckon it was worth a 14-point advantage. But we made mistakes, like losing possession inside their 22, and we panicked a bit under the early pressure and it led to quick tries that really put us on the back foot.

"We were very encouraged with what we got out of the game in terms of what we did in the last hour when we scored 28 points to 19 and had the Crusaders under pressure at forward, which is something that very rarely happens. We felt that we'd earned their respect as a team," Fleck said.