The Stormers produced their best performance of the season to beat the Blues 37-20 in an entertaining Super Rugby fixture at Newlands on Saturday.
The Cape Town outfit outscored the Blues four tries to three, while flyhalf Damian Willemse kicked four conversions and two penalties in a man-of-the-match display for the home side.
The Stormers had a horrible build up to the match, with many key players missing training sessions this past week because of flu following their trip back from Australasia.
The Stormers lost all three on their trip to Australia and New Zealand -- against the Waratahs, Crusaders and Highlanders -- and the smart money was on the Blues to win this match after they beat the Lions in the previous round.
However, it was the visitors, oddly also playing in Blue alongside the home team, that looked a bit flat. The Stormers climbed in from the first minute of the match, playing with lots of energy and physicality. They also put the New Zealand side under immense pressure with ball in hand -- something they couldn't quite do on their tour.
The Stormers opened the scoring in the fifth minute after a wonderful counter attack by Dillyn Leyds. The ball eventually came out to JJ Engelbrecht, who then fed EW Viljoen with an inside pass to score.
Leyds was again influential in the Stormers' second try eight minutes later. The fullback decided to run the ball back, before finding the unlikely figure of Pieter-Steph du Toit on the left wing. But the lock-cum-flank sped away down the flank, before finding wing Raymond Rhule on his inside to round off the move.
The Blues finally got on the scoreboard when their flyhalf Bryn Gatland slotted a penalty. But, after having a try by Nizaam Carr disallowed for offsides, the Stormers scored their third try of the half in the 36th minute to go into the break with a 24-3 lead.
The Blues seemed to wake up during the break and scored their first try six minutes into the second half. Akira Ione picked the ball up from the back of a scrum close to the Stormers goalline and powered past a hapless Engelbrecht to score.
But the Stormers man would make amends for that botched tackle by setting up the Stormers' fourth try. Engelbrecht intercepted a pass by Sonny Bill Williams and scooted down field, before offloading to Viljoen to score his second try.
The Blues did look the stronger team halfway through the second half, and Stormers fans would have been worried at the sight of some their players suffering some cramp.
Blues fullback Michael Collins scored in the 58th minute following a great attack, before Rieko Ione cut the deficit down to 14 points with 11 minutes to play.
But Willemse kicked a penalty in the 72nd minute to give the Stormers a 17-point cushion, which they managed to hold on to until the final whistle.