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The Stormers Vs. The Chiefs
2016 Super Rugby Tournament, 24 July, 2016
|The Chiefs 60 defeated The Stormers 21|
|The Stormers||The Chiefs|
|Referee: J Peyper|
|Touch judges: J van Heerden & AJ Jacobs|
The Chiefs have moved into the Super Rugby semi-finals with a massive 39-point win over the Stormers in Cape Town.
The conference topping Stormers will play host to the Chiefs in Cape Town today, as both sides look to keep their season alive. Follow all the live highlights and Super Rugby action on The Roar from 3am (AEST).
The Stormers finished with ten wins for the year and in third spot overall across the 18 teams, but incredibly, didn’t play a single game against New Zealand opposition.
The draw means they’ve avoided the rigours of a dominant NZ conference all year. Until now.
The Chiefs ended up third in one of the tightest conference tables in Super Rugby history, with four of the five teams from NZ finishing with 11 wins, just bonus points separating them.
A loss last week to the Highlanders robbed them a chance of top spot after holding the position for most of the year until the final few rounds.
These two hold quite a tight historical record in Super Rugby, with the Stormers just holding the advantage with 9 wins and 8 losses.
Similarly, at home the South African side also just holds one more win over the Chiefs with a four and three split.
A few changes for both coaches coming into this one, with a mix of injury and positional changes for the quarter-final.
For the home side, Stormers coach Robbie Fleck has changed both of his halves for the contest, bringing Robert du Preez and Nic Groom at five-eighth and halfback respectively.
Du Preez comes in for an injured Jean-Luc du Plessis, while Groom comes back into the side after being rested last week, pushing Louis Schreuder back onto the bench.
Plenty of movement in the scrum for the Stormers, with second rowers Eben Etzebeth and Pieter-Steph du Toit both making their return to the side after a rest last week.
Bongi Mbonambi will start at hooker this week, with Scarra Ntubeni moving to the bench. Props Oli Kebble and co-captain Frans Malherbe will also be starting in the reserves as they return from injuries.
Siya Kolisi is the final alteration to the side, slotting in at 7 for his return to the starting 15.
For the Chiefs, Fijian born All Black flyer Seta Tamanivalu has been ruled out with a knee injury, opening the door for Stephen Donald to take the inside centre position in his first year back in Super Rugby.
Halfback Tawera Kerr-Barlow has been shifted into the reserves in place of Brad Weber. Also in the backline, Sam McNicol will start on the wing ahead of Toni Pulu has has also been moved to the bench.
Tom Sanders shuffles across to No. 8 in the absence of Liam Messam.
Prediction: The Chiefs should be too strong in the Republic, but expect a barnstormer if you’re awake!