Genia, Cooper start in experienced Rebels line-up
Cape Town - The Melbourne Rebels have named an experienced side to face the Brumbies in their Super Rugby opener in Canberra on Friday.
Kick-off is at 10:45 SA time.
will be the first opportunity for fans to get to see duo Will Genia and
Quade Cooper link up together in Melbourne colours, with the pair named to start at No 9 and 10, respectively.
Cooper leads a
list of five new faces for the Rebels, with former Brumbies players Isi
Naisarani and Robbie Abel named to face their old side, with Naisarani
to start at No 8, while Abel will begin on the bench as the reserve
Rounding out the list of potential debutants is Shute Shield player
Matt Gibbon and former Reds and Waratahs player Brad Wilkin, with both
forwards earning a spot in the reserves.
After three years abroad
at French Club Bordeaux, returning Rebel Luke Jones, who played 72 games
for the team between 2011-2016, will slot straight back into the
starting XV, after being named at lock.
Promising forward Richard
Hardwick will have the tough task of going head to head with David
Pocock, after the Wallabies flank was named to start despite concerns a
strained calf could keep the Brumbies vice-captain out of the season
Lock Adam Coleman was unable to overcome an injury
sustained from the recent 10-day Wallabies camp, while Reece Hodge has
been given further time to come back from his ankle injury.
15 Tom Banks, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita
Kuridrani, 12 Irae Simone, 11 Toni Pulu, 10 Christian Lealiifano (captain),
9 Joe Powell, 8 Lachlan McCaffrey, 7 David Pocock, 6 Rob Valetini, 5 Sam
Carter, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 Folau Fainga’a, 1 James
Substitutes: 16 Josh Mann-Rea, 17 Scott Sio, 18 Leslie Leuluaialii-Makin, 19
Blake Enever, 20 Peter Samu, 21 Matt Lucas, 22 Wharenui Hawera, 23 Andy
15 Dane Haylett-Petty (captain), 14 Jack
Maddocks, 13 Tom English, 12 Billy Meakes, 11 Marika Koroibete, 10 Quade
Cooper, 9 Will Genia, 8 Isi Naisarani, 7 Richard Hardwick, 6 Angus
Cottrell, 5 Matt Philip, 4 Luke Jones, 3 Jermaine Ainsley, 2 Anaru
Rangi, 1 Tetra Faulkner
Substitutes: 16 Robbie Abel, 17 Matt Gibbon, 18 Sam Talakai, 19 Esi Ha’angana,
20 Brad Wilkin, 21 Rob Leota, 22 Michael Ruru, 23 Semisi Tupou