Up-skill is the buzzword in South African rugby at the moment.
And Western Province and the Stormers have wasted no time in bringing in a specialist of their own – Kiwi Paul Feeney.
After spending 10 days at the union earlier this year, Feeney has now inked a three-year-deal to become Robbie Fleck’s assistant coach.
The former Blues mentor will work on attack and skills as the Stormers continue to transform into an exciting, running team.
With the likes of Jean-Luc du Plessis, Cheslin Kolbe and Leolin Zas in their backline, there was evidence of a more expansive approach from the Stormers this year.
Having made 222 handling errors throughout the year (only the Blues and the Force made fewer mistakes) the Stormers need some help.
But you can’t make mistakes if you don’t take risks and this is probably the part that Stormers Director of Rugby, Gert Smal, would like to see change.
They only made 2 199 passes throughout the season – compared to 2 668 made by the Hurricanes, who made the most passes.
In terms of offloads, it was also the New Zealand teams that led the way, with the Crusaders (220), the Highlanders (207) and the Chiefs (192) occupying the top three places.
The Stormers were down in ninth place with 135.
It is clear that the Stormers would like to take more risks, with the focus on execution being how they hope to pull it off.
Upon signing for the Cape side, Feeney told Fairfax Media: “They [the Stormers] are keen to get an overseas coach and one from New Zealand as well. We can bounce ideas.
“They’ll look at some of my skills and blend them with their own.
“It’s always good to get ideas from outside and a different culture as well. We had a good chat about that with the coaching staff.
“I think it’s going to be a really good fit.”