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The Stormers duo of Andries Bekker and Duane Vermeulen are in a race against time to be fit for the upcoming Super Rugby season which starts next month.


Both Bekker and Vermeulen were injured in the 2011 Super Rugby season and have undergone operations to help their recoveries.

Bekker was diagnosed with a shoulder injury which required surgery and was ruled out of the Rugby World Cup while Vermeulen injured his knee and had an operation at the end of the Super Rugby season.

Both players have missed the last six months of rugby but were present at Stormers training in Hermanus yesterday even though they were unable to take part in full training.

Stormers coach Allister Coetzee says that it is touch and go as to whether they will be fit to play in the team’s season opening Super Rugby match even though they have both made good recoveries.

“I would say at the moment that it is about 75 per cent that they will be ready for the first game against the Hurricanes,” Coetzee told SuperSport.

Coetzee added that if the duo are not ready to play for the opening match of the season they will be ready for the second round clash against the Sharks at Newlands.

“A lot depends on how much game time they get during the pre-season games.”

“Like last year I want to give all the players 120 minutes in the buildup, and if they don’t get that, then I would rather not play them.”

Coetzee said that he was pleased to a number of players who were injured last year such as lock Rynhardt Elstadt, back in training.

“The good thing is that there have been no injuries in the off-season preparations and the players have all coped well with the big work-load we have foisted on them,” said Coetzee.

Coetzee also said that newcomers Deon Carstens and Gerhard van den Heever had fitted in well at training.


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