Rathbone to face Cheetahs
Sydney - The Brumbies received a boost ahead of their Super Rugby playoff
against the Cheetahs when influential scrumhalf Nic White was
passed fit to start Sunday's match in Canberra.
Openside flank George Smith, who won his 111th Test cap against the British and Irish
Lions two weeks ago, also returns to the starting lineup after coming
off the bench in last week's shock defeat to Western Force.
Jake White also sprang something of a surprise on Friday by bringing
former Wallabies wing Clyde Rathbone into his run-on side in place of
current Australia international Joe Tomane.
White, 22, has not
played since fracturing his collarbone against the Melbourne Rebels on
June 7, the match which secured the twice champions a place in
post-season play for the first time since they won their second title in
Both Smith and Rathbone started the victory over the Crusaders in the final nine years ago and neither would have
been considered likely to feature at the start of the year.
returned to the Brumbies on a one-year contract after three years in
retirement, while Smith needed the permission of his Japanese club
Suntory to extend his stay in Canberra after a season-ending injury to
"Bringing two guys like Clyde and George into our
starting side will give us experience when we need it," coach Jake White
said in a media release.
"Those two guys have both won championships at Canberra Stadium and it's exciting to have them involved.
Cheetahs are a side which has made huge improvements over the last two
seasons and it's a credit to them that they are now a competition
A win for the Brumbies on Sunday would send them to South
Africa to face the Bulls in the semi-finals next weekend and the winner
of the other playoff clash between Canterbury Crusaders and Queensland
Reds to Hamilton to face the Chiefs.
Bloemfontein-based Cheetahs manage an upset in their first playoff
match, they would go to New Zealand with the Crusaders or Reds making
the long trip to Pretoria to play the second-seeded Bulls.Teams:
Brumbies: 15 Jesse Mogg, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita Kuridrani,
12 Christian Lealiifano, 11 Clyde Rathbone, 10 Matt Toomua, 9 Nic White,
8 Ben Mowen (captain), 7 George Smith, 6 Peter Kimlin, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Scott
Fardy , 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Scott Sio.
Substitutes: 16 Siliva Siliva, 17 Ruan Smith, 18 Fotu Auelua, 19 Colby Faingaa, 20 Ian Prior, 21 Andrew Smith, 22 Joe Tomane.
Cheetahs: 15 Hennie Daniller, 14 Willie le Roux, 13 Johann
Sadie, 12 Robert Ebersohn, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Riaan Smit, 9 Piet van
Zyl, 8 Philip van der Walt, 7 Lappies Labuschagne, 6 Heinrich Brüssow, 5
Rynhardt Landman, 4 Lodewyk de Jager, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Adriaan Strauss (captain), 1 Coenie Oosthuizen
Substitutes: 16 Ryno Barnes, 17 Trevor Nyakane, 18 Waltie Vermeulen, 19 Boom Prinsloo, 20 Sarel Pretorius, 21 Elgar Watts, 22 Rayno Benjamin