Brumbies bolstered by returning Mann-Rea

Wed, 19 Apr 2017 06:39
Large josh mann rea

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Brumbies head coach Stephen Larkham has made two changes to the starting team that will face Super Rugby Champions the Hurricanes at Mclean Park in Napier on Friday. 

Hooker Josh Mann-Rea has sufficiently recovered from a knee injury to reclaim the No.2 jersey from Robbie Abel, whilst left wing James Dargaville is back in the run-on team in place of Tom Banks.

Mann-Rea last featured against the Waratahs in the 28-12 win at Allianz Stadium in Sydney and will play in his 50th Super Rugby match. Dargaville meanwhile will make his fifth start of the campaign having scored a try off the bench against the Reds in Round Seven.

Abel is named amongst the replacements, where there is also a recall for loose forward Lola Fakaosilea in place of Tom Staniforth with Larkham going to a five-three split on the bench as Nigel Ah Wong comes back into contention. 

The Brumbies come into the match having a good overall record against the Hurricanes, including the remarkable 52-10 thrashing of the New Zealanders to open the 2016 season. The 'Canes, of course, went on to claim the title. 

Centre Tevita Kuridrani, who crossed for a try in that rout of the Hurricanes, will team up alongside Andrew Smith in the heart of the Brumbies midfield with leading try-scorer Henry Speight, who has six for the season, playing on the opposite wing to Dargaville. 

Up front, apart from the recalled Mann-Rea, it's a settled unit with Wallaby props Scott Sio and Allan Alaalatoa providing ballast in the front-row in front of skipper Sam Carter and Rory Arnold in the second row. Jarrad Butler, Scott Fardy and Chris Alcock provide the rest of the pack.

Hamilton-born Wharenui Hawera returns to the country of his birth as the Brumbies chief playmaker looking to add to his season tally of 54 points. 

Brumbies: 15 Aidan Toua, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Andrew Smith, 11 James Dargaville, 10 Wharenui Hawera, 9 Joe Powell, 8 Jarrad Butler, 7 Chris Alcock, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Sam Carter (captain), 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 Josh Mann-Rea, 1 Scott Sio.
Replacements: 16 Robbie Abel, 17 Nic Mayhew, 18 Ben Alexander, 19 Blake Enever, 20 Lolo Fakaosilea, 21 De Wet Roos, 22 Jordan Jackson-Hope, 23 Nigel Ah Wong.

Date: Friday, April 21
Venue: McLean Park, Napier
Kick-off: 19.35 (17.35 AEST; 07.35 GMT)
Referee: Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Glen Jackson (New Zealand), Angus Mabey (New Zealand)
TMO: Shane McDermott (New Zealand)

There are currently no matches being played
Fri, 23 March 2018
Crusaders v Bulls 06h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Sharks 08h45 Melbourne
Connacht v Edinburgh 19h35 Sportsground
Dragons v Cheetahs 19h35 Rodney Parade
Glasgow Warriors v Zebre 19h35 Scotstoun
Bath v Exeter Chiefs 19h45 Recreation Ground
Sat, 24 March 2018
Sunwolves v Chiefs 04h15 Tokyo
Hurricanes v Highlanders 06h35 Wellington
Kings v Treviso 13h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
London Irish v Gloucester 15h00 Madejski Stadium
Saracens v Harlequins 15h00 London
Sale Sharks v Worcester Warriors 15h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Stormers v Reds 15h15 Newlands
Cardiff Blues v Ulster 15h15 Cardiff Arms Park
Munster v Scarlets 17h30 Thomond Park
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 17h30 Kingston Park
Ospreys v Leinster 19h35 Liberty Stadium
Jaguares v Lions 19h40 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
Sun, 25 March 2018
Leicester Tigers v Wasps 15h00 Welford Road
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Rebels 4 3 0 1 15
Waratahs 4 2 1 1 10
Reds 3 2 0 1 8
Brumbies 4 2 0 2 8
Sunwolves 4 0 0 4 2
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Highlanders 3 3 0 0 13
Hurricanes 3 2 0 1 10
Crusaders 4 2 0 2 10
Chiefs 3 2 0 1 8
Blues 4 1 0 3 6
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 5 4 0 1 19
Stormers 5 2 0 3 9
Sharks 4 1 1 4 9
Bulls 4 1 0 3 5
Jaguares 4 1 0 3 4