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Stormers v Cheetahs: Teams
At Newlands, Saturday May 12, Kick-off: 18.10 BST
The Stormers received a timely fitness boost ahead of this weekend's Super Rugby showdown against the Cheetahs, with three key players back in action.
Jean de Villiers, Gio Aplon and Eben Etzebeth have recovered from their respective injuries and return to the starting line-up for Saturday's physical clash.
De Villiers, who was forced home early from the side's successful Australasian tour, has overcome a wrist injury and takes back the captain's armband from lock Andries Bekker.
His return sees Juan de Jongh shifting one position out to number 13 and stand-in centre Bryan Habana moving back to the wing.
Aplon will replace Gerhard van den Heever, who drops to the bench while JP Du Plessis and Danie Poolman fall out of the matchday 22 altogether.
In the forwards, coach Allister Coetzee looks to rotate some players who started against the Force two weeks ago.
De Kock Steenkamp makes way for Etzebeth in the second row, Deon Fourie replaces Tiaan Liebenberg at hooker and Brok Harris swaps with Frans Malherbe at tighthead.
London Irish and Canadian loose forward Jebb Sinclair, who joined the Stormers on loan, will provide loose forward cover from the bench.
Cheetahs coach Naka Drotske has made just one change to his starting XV for the clash in Cape Town.
Piet van Zyl, who made a big impact when coming off the bench in last week's 17-13 win over the Western Force, replaces Tewis de Bruyn at scrum-half.
Cheetahs centre Andries Strauss faces a fitness test after injuring his ribs against the Force, with Philip Snyman, named on the bench, handed a possible start if Strauss is not cleared.
The match will be a special occassion for Heinrich Brüssow who will make his 50th Super Rugby appearance for the Cheetahs.
The 25-year-old openside flanker, who has 20 Test caps to his name, made his Super Rugby debut in 2000 but injuries in the last couple of years have prevented him from reaching the landmark earlier.
Stormers: 15 Joe Pietersen, 14 Gio Aplon, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Jean de Villiers, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Peter Grant, 9 Dewaldt Duvenage, 8 Nizaam Carr, 7 Rynhardt Elstadt, 6 Siya Kolisi, 5 Andries Bekker (c), 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Brok Harris, 2 Deon Fourie, 1 Steven Kitshoff.
Replacements: 16 Tiaan Liebenberg, 17 Frans Malherbe, 18 De Kock Steenkamp, 19 Jebb Sinclair, 20 Louis Schreuder, 21 Burton Francis, 22 Gerhard van den Heever.
Cheetahs: 15 Hennie Daniller, 14 Cameron Jacobs, 13 Robert Ebersohn, 12 Andries Strauss, 11 Willie le Roux, 10 Sias Ebersohn, 9 Piet van Zyl, 8 Philip van der Walt, 7 Justin Downey, 6 Heinrich Brüssow, 5 Izak van der Westhuizen, 4 George Earle, 3 WP Nel, 2 Adriaan Strauss (c), 1 Coenie Oosthuizen.
Replacements: 16 Hercu Liebenberg, 17 Trevor Nyakane, 18 Andries Ferreira, 19 Ashley Johnson, 20 Tewis de Bruyn, 21 Riaan Smit, 22 Philip Snyman.
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|Friday 13th February|
|06:35||Crusaders vs Melbourne Rebels|
|08:40||Brumbies vs Reds|
|17:10||Lions vs Hurricanes|
|Saturday 14th February|
|06:35||Blues vs Chiefs|
|15:05||Sharks vs Cheetahs|
|17:05||Bulls vs Stormers|
|Sunday 15th February|
|06:05||Waratahs vs Western Force|
|Friday 20th February|
|06:35||Chiefs vs Brumbies|
|08:40||Melbourne Rebels vs Waratahs|
|17:10||Bulls vs Hurricanes|
|Saturday 21st February|
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|08:40||Reds vs Western Force|
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|17:10||Sharks vs Lions|
|Friday 27th February|
|06:35||Highlanders vs Reds|
|11:00||Western Force vs Hurricanes|
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|Saturday 28th February|
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|08:40||Melbourne Rebels vs Brumbies|
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|Friday 6th March|
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|Saturday 7th March|
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Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com