Fleck still confident of play-off place despite Lions mauling

Stormers coach Robbie Fleck Chris Ricco/BackpagePix

Stormers coach Robbie Fleck says his side is not out of contention in this year's Super Rugby competition despite slipping to a fifth defeat of the season in a 52-31 thrashing at the Lions on Saturday.

The Cape Town-based side have now lost all five of their away games this season, to go with three home wins, and trail the log-leading Lions by 12 points.

But with the Lions now set to head Down Under, Fleck believes that could present an opportunity for his side to make up some ground.

"They have a tough tour ahead of them‚"Fleck told reporters. "The way they played in this game they can look forward to that tour. By no means are we out of it. We've got eight games to go.

"The Lions also had seven or eight games in a row. We are looking forward to the break [bye]. That is the first half of the comp gone for us. We have to reset our goals obviously.

"We have an away game against the Sharks before we have some home games."

The Stormers defence was at times porous against the Lions as they conceded eight tries and that and the breakdown were areas of concern for Fleck.

"Defensively we have to be better. You can't be leaking eight tries. Some soft tries too. That is definitely something we have to work on.

"The breakdown needs to be better too. At the breakdown I thought the Lions were outstanding. That's where they slowed our ball down.

"When we retained possession we looked a decent side. We were also beaten at the breakdown by the Bulls. That is something that we have to work on.

"We created opportunities but obviously we didn't convert. We were well beaten by a better team."

The Stormers travel to the Sharks on April 21.