Reds shake-up for Cheetahs

Tue, 04 Mar 2014 06:41
Large richard graham reds players

Reds head coach Richard Graham has named his team to face the Cheetahs this Friday, with five changes to the side that lost to the Waratahs.

Reds head coach Richard Graham has named his team to face the Cheetahs this Friday, with five changes to the side that lost to the Waratahs.

The match will see four players earn their first start of 2014 Super Rugby season.

Rod Davies will play his first game for the Reds since July 2013, having successfully worked his way back from a knee reconstruction. Davies replaces Lachie Turner on the right wing, who has been ruled out due to a persistent knee injury suffered in a pre-season match against the Chiefs. He is expected to be fit to travel to South Africa.

Also in the backs, Mike Harris has been injected back into the starting lineup, after missing last weekend's game due to ankle soreness. Harris replaces Anthony Fainga’a at inside centre and will be joined by Chris Feauai-Sautia at outside centre for his first start of the year. Both Fainga'a and Ben Tapuai have been moved to the reserves.

In the forwards, James Hanson will make his first start of the year, replacing Saia Fainga'a in the starting lineup. Prop Ben Daley also comes into the starting side for the first time, taking over from James Slipper at loosehead. Both Fainga'a and Slipper suffered corks on the weekend and have been moved to the reserves.

Graham said the changes were a necessity of the short turnaround and the team's impending trip to South Africa.

"It is a short turnaround and with only two training opportunities we needed to have 15 players fit to train on Monday and Tuesday," Graham said.

"Unfortunately we suffered a few knocks in last weekend's match and have had to make changes to allow us the best possible preparation.

"This match is significant as it is our only home game in the first five rounds. We want to make sure we deliver a strong performance for the more than 30,000 people who have already signed up to be Reds members in 2014 and also ensure we give ourselves the best possible opportunity to win before heading to South Africa," he added.

This weekend's match sees the potential for Reds flyhalf Quade Cooper to break the existing points-scoring record for a Reds player in Super Rugby.

The record is currently held by Elton Flatley, who scored 629 points in 86 Super Rugby appearances. Cooper currently sits on 620 points scored in 89 Super Rugby appearances.  

This is not to be confused with the overall points-scoring record for Queensland prior to the inception of Super Rugby, which is held by Michael Lynagh on 1,166 points.

Reds: 15 Aidan Toua, 14 Rod Davies, 13 Chris Feauai-Sautia, 12 Mike Harris, 11 Dom Shipperley, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Will Genia, 8 Jake Schatz, 7 Liam Gill, 6 Eddie Quirk, 5 James Horwill (captain), 4 Rob Simmons, 3 Greg Holmes, 2 James Hanson, 1 Ben Daley.
Replacements: 16 Saia Fainga'a, 17 James Slipper, 18 Jono Owen, 19 Ed O'Donoghue, 20 Beau Robinson, 21 Nick Frisby, 22 Anthony Fainga'a, 23 Ben Tapuai.

Date: Friday, March 7
Venue: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Kick-off: 18.40 (08.40 GMT; 10.40 SA time)
Referee: Garratt Williamson (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Angus Gardner (Australia), Matt O'Brien (Australia)
TMO: Steve Leszczynski (Australia)

There are currently no matches being played
Fri, 09 October 2015
Western Province v EP Kings 16h00 Newlands
Pumas v Blue Bulls 16h00 Mbombela Stadium
New Zealand v Tonga 19h00 Newcastle
Sat, 10 October 2015
Free State Cheetahs v Sharks 12h00 Bloemfontein
Samoa v Scotland 13h30 Newcastle
Golden Lions v Griquas 14h00 Ellis Park
Australia v Wales 15h45 London
England v Uruguay 19h00 Manchester
Sun, 11 October 2015
Argentina v Namibia 11h00 Leicester
Italy v Romania 13h30 Exeter
France v Ireland 15h45 Cardiff
United States v Japan 19h00 Gloucester
Wed, 07 October 2015
Namibia v Georgia 16 | 17
South Africa v United States 64 | 0
Tue, 06 October 2015
Fiji v Uruguay 47 | 15
Canada v Romania 15 | 17
Sun, 04 October 2015
Ireland v Italy 16 | 9
Argentina v Tonga 45 | 16
Zebre v Scarlets 8 | 20
Sat, 03 October 2015
England v Australia 13 | 33
Connacht v Cardiff Blues 36 | 31
South Africa v Scotland 34 | 16
Samoa v Japan 5 | 26
Leinster v Dragons 37 | 13
Griquas v Sharks 20 | 45
Pumas v Free State Cheetahs 37 | 37
Fri, 02 October 2015
New Zealand v Georgia 43 | 10
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Waratahs 16 11 0 5 52
Brumbies 16 9 0 7 47
Rebels 16 7 0 9 36
Reds 16 4 0 12 22
Force 16 3 0 13 19
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Hurricanes 16 14 0 2 66
Highlanders 16 11 0 5 53
Chiefs 16 10 0 6 48
Crusaders 16 9 0 7 46
Blues 16 3 0 13 20
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 16 10 1 5 45
Lions 16 9 1 6 42
Bulls 16 7 0 9 38
Sharks 16 7 0 9 34
Cheetahs 16 5 0 11 26