Super Rugby

Noah Lolesio to start at No 10 for Brumbies in Super Rugby AU final

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Noah Lolesio (PA)
Noah Lolesio (PA)

Brumbies coach Dan McKellar has named young flyhalf Noah Lolesio in his starting line-up for Saturday's Super Rugby AU final against the Reds in Canberra.

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

Lolesio, still only 20 years old, returns to the side after recovering from a hamstring injury in July and will be partnered by fellow Wallabies squad member Joe Powell, who starts at scrumhalf after being rested in the side's last regular fixture of the season.

An all-Wallabies front-row sees Scott Sio at loosehead prop alongside Folau Fainga'a at hooker and skipper Allan Alaalatoa in the tighthead prop position.

The mobile Murray Douglas returns to the starting XV and will partner with Cadeyrn Neville in the second-row.

Vice-captain Lachlan McCaffrey will wear the number six jersey, linking up with Will Miller and Wallabies squad member Pete Samu in the back-row.

Following his selection in his first-ever national squad earlier this week, Irae Simone is selected for another start at inside centre, with Tevita Kuridrani lining up for his 135th appearance as a Brumby at outside centre.

It's a familiar sight in the back three with Andy Muirhead and Tom Wright on the wings and Tom Banks in the No 15 jersey.

Academy graduate Connal McInerney will again be relied upon as the back-up hooker with James Slipper and Tom Ross the other front-row replacements.

First-year Super Rugby lock Nick Frost and the powerful Rob Valetini are the other forward finishers.

Wallabies number nine Nic White will provide energy as a replacement during the match with the versatile Bayley Kuenzle and damaging Solomone Kata rounding out the match-day 23.

McKellar said: "As a team we're really happy for Noah. He was playing good footy before his setback, he's done a lot of work to get himself right and trained very well over the last two weeks. We've got full confidence and belief in his ability.”

"To be able to play a home Final in front of our family and our supporters is something we set out to do at the start of this competition and we can’t wait for that opportunity.

"We've prepared well over the last two weeks and we know the Reds are going to be a huge challenge on Saturday night but it’s one we’re looking forward to."

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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