Auelua set to wrestle Sharks
Sydney - Brumbies coach Jake White wants Fotu Auelua to have a devastating
impact in his first starting appearance of the season on Saturday in
White has shown confidence in his squad's depth by making five changes to the starting XV for the clash with the Sharks.
Auelua, Scott Sio, Joseph Tomane and Tevita Kuridrani have been injected
into the line-up for the biggest test of the Brumbies' year to date.
Unbeaten this season, if the Brumbies defeat the Sharks at Kings Park,
they will set a new record for the most consecutive wins away from home
in the competition's 18 years.
Auelua gets his chance at No 8 after a forward-pack reshuffle. It was
the two-game tour of South Africa last year which launched his Super
''Last year he had a massive impact in South Africa and he hadn't even
had a proper pre-season,'' White said of the 29-year-old, 115-kilogram
forward. ''Now he's in the best shape he's been in for a long, long
time. I can see there's a spring in Fotu's step. He can have that same
impact … straight away for us over here. The Sharks are a physical
side and Fotu has shown everyone how powerful he can be.''
There are plenty of changes in the Brumbies' line-up as they aim for a
fourth consecutive win to start their campaign. Dan Palmer has been
given the week off with Sio starting at loose-head prop, Ben Alexander
moving to tight-head and Ruaidhri Murphy joining the bench.
Hooker Stephen Moore is carrying a niggling back injury, but the
Wallabies star will play. Scott Fardy has been rotated to the reserves
list with Peter Kimlin and Sam Carter taking the starting second-row
Ben Mowen moves to blindside breakaway to accommodate for Auelua's
injection at the back of the scrum. George Smith reclaims the No 7
jersey for the first time since 2010, with David Pocock needing a knee
In the back line, Tomane gets his chance on the wing. Kuridrani starts at outside-centre.
It's the biggest overhaul this season with White making just two changes to his starting XV in the first three games.