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The Stormers lost 14-13 to the Crusaders in Christchurch, but the pain of defeat will be soothed slightly by the return to form and fitness of Schalk Burger.
The former Springbok flanker played his first game on New Zealand soil since the 2011 World Cup after a nightmare two years.
Burger suffered a calf problem in training and ended up in hospital to have a cyst close to his spinal cord drained. Burger contracted meningitis after the procedure and there were genuine fears he could have died.
He has overcome these problems now, and after a lacklustre 30 minutes in the Stormers’ opener this season, he played a barnstorming 75 minutes against the Crusaders in Round 4.
ESPN Scrum’s Brett McKay said:
What a return to Super Rugby from the brutal Springboks hero, after an absence of nearly two full seasons, following an almost fatal infection picked up in hospital. Thirteen runs, 18 tackles, offloads and turnovers, annoying Crusaders opponents all over the field for 75 minutes; it was as if he'd never been out of the game.
And it really was like he'd never been out of the game, too; he smashed attacking runners, he smashed into defending would-be tacklers, he was abrasive, he threw his bulk around, and generally announced himself back in the top flight in spectacular fashion.