Super Rugby

SA-born prop starts for Reds in Super Rugby AU final

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JP Smith (Gallo Images)
JP Smith (Gallo Images)

Reds coach Brad Thorn has made two changes to his starting line-up for Saturday's Super Rugby AU final against the Brumbies in Canberra.

Kick-off is at 11:20 (SA time.

After being cleared of concussion, Jordan Petaia will shift to the right wing with Chris Feauai-Sautia ruled out with a groin injury.

It sees Hunter Paisami start in the number 13 jersey and re-join his centre-pairing partner Hamish Stewart.

In the forwards, South African-born JP Smith will start at loosehead prop as Harry Hoopert drops to the bench as a finisher this weekend.

There are a further two changes to the reserves with JP Smith's twin brother Ruan back in the match-day 23 as replacement tighthead prop, while utility back Jack Hardy comes into the team following the elevation of Paisami into the XV.

“Grand Final week - this is what it’s all about," Thorn commented.

“We’re embracing the challenge ahead against a worthy opponent, whom we respect.

“Our journey to get here started back in November with our Reds to Regions trip across Queensland. We travelled around the world. We worked hard in two pre-seasons. We’ve battled through a global pandemic.

“Many of our guys in this group have come through our pathway and club rugby – they’ve thrived and have grown as men during this year.

“We’ve reconnected with our state. They believe in us and we want to make them proud this weekend, plus achieve something together as a group.”

Teams:

Brumbies

15 Tom Banks, 14 Andy Muirhead, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Irae Simone, 11 Tom Wright, 10 Noah Lolesio, 9 Joe Powell, 8 Pete Samu, 7 Will Miller, 6 Lachlan McCaffrey, 5 Cadeyrn Neville, 4 Murray Douglas, 3 Allan Alaalatoa (captain), 2 Folau Fainga'a, 1 Scott Sio

Substitutes: 16 Connal McInerney, 17 James Slipper, 18 Tom Ross, 19 Nick Frost, 20 Rob Valetini, 21 Nic White, 22 Bayley Kuenzle, 23 Solomone Kata

Reds

15 Jock Campbell, 14 Jordan Petaia, 13 Hunter Paisami, 12 Hamish Stewart, 11 Filipo Daugunu, 10 James O’Connor, 9 Tate McDermott, 8 Harry Wilson, 7 Fraser McReight, 6 Liam Wright (captain), 5 Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, 4 Angus Blyth, 3 Taniela Tupou, 2 Brandon Paenga-Amosa, 1 JP Smith

Substitutes: 16 Josh Nasser, 17 Harry Hoopert, 18 Ruan Smith, 19 Tuaina Taii Tualima, 20 Angus Scott-Young, 21 Moses Sorovi, 22 Bryce Hegarty, 23 Jack Hardy

- TEAMtalk media

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