DETERMINED: JD Schickerling
DETERMINED: JD Schickerling
UNAVAILABLE: Bok captain Eben Etzebeth
UNAVAILABLE: Bok captain Eben Etzebeth
DECISIONS: Coach Robbie Fleck
DECISIONS: Coach Robbie Fleck
YOUNGSTER: Highly-rated Salmaan Moerat
YOUNGSTER: Highly-rated Salmaan Moerat

The Stormers are about to open yet another tight-five gift when they face the Jaguares at Newlands on Saturday.

And whatever box coach Robbie Fleck and his selectors chooses for the clash, they are sure to be entertained by what’s jumping out of it.

On one hand you’ve got JD Schickerling and in the other Salman Moerat.

Having already played 17 Super Rugby matches since making his debut against the Bulls in 2016, Schickerling has adapted his game to be able to play both as a four or a five lock.

His story is one of the true inspiring ones in South African rugby, having suffered a broken neck in 2014. In 2016 he was also included in the SA ‘A’ team to play the England Saxons.

But with Etzebeth and Pieter-Steph du Toit being first-choice locks at the Stormers, Schickerling is not yet a regular starter at the franchise and hasn’t made his breakthrough to the senior national team to date.

But that’s about to change this year.

Schickerling explains: “If I do get the opportunity [to come in for Etzebeth], I will use it.

“If I get the opportunity, I’d want to make the mark. I would like to make the step up.”

With Currie Cup lock partner Chris van Zyl also among the backup brigade, there is of course every chance Fleck and company might open another box altogether.

And that comes in the form of ex-SA Schools captain Salmaan Moerat.

Of the competition for places in the team, Schickerling says: “We’ve got good depth in our team. Competition always a good thing to boost each other.”

Of what Moerat brings to the party, Schickerling adds: “He is such a great player coming through [the system] - someone to look out for.

“He’s a very good player - a very hard and good No.4 lock - he’s got the size for it...”

Fleck will name his side for Saturday’s clash on Thursday.

[email protected]

Like us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter