Hailing from Phalaborwa, Stander was selected to represent Limpopo Blue Bulls at provincial level where he played in the 2006 Under-13 Craven Week, 2009 Under-16 Grant Khomo Week and 2010 Under-18 Craven Week held in Welkom.
In 2011, he moved to Krugersdorp, where he attended Hoërskool Monument for his matric year. This made him eligible to play for the Golden Lions and he represented them at the 2011 Craven Week tournament in Kimberley.
He joined the Golden Lions Academy in 2012 and featured for the Golden Lions U19 side in the 2012 Under-19 Provincial Championship;
Stander made his first-class debut during the 2013 Vodacom Cup, starting their 22–27 defeat against the Falcons in Kempton Park.
In 2013, Stander was included in a South Africa Under-20 squad that toured Argentina as preparation for the 2013 Junior World Championship. He was initially not selected in the final squad that participated at the tournament in France, but was later included following an injury to Jannes Kirsten.
He made a solitary appearance for the Golden Lions in the 2014 Vodacom Cup, playing off the bench in an 110–0 victory against his former side the Limpopo Blue Bulls in a match in Polokwane.[
Stander joined Nelspruit-based outfit the Pumas for the 2015 season and made his debut for his new side in their opening match of the 2015 Vodacom Cup season.
JW July 17
No 5 Lock
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