Beale back ... on the Rebels bench
Beale back ... on the Rebels benchSHARE
The Rebels have named Kurtley Beale on the bench for Friday's match against the 2012 Super Rugby Champions, the Chiefs.
Beale returns to the Rebels side for the first time since breaking his hand against the NSW Waratahs in Round Three and then being suspended for getting into a brawl with teammates on the team bus in Durban.
The Wallaby playmaker addressed the players and coaching staff Tuesday, before taking to the training paddock later that afternoon.
Rebels coach Damien Hill said the decision was one that needed consultation, with the players having a considerable impact on the decision.
"Each decision ultimately is made in the best interest of the franchise and the team. In this instance, that is what we believe we have done, and that is the most important aspect in this decision for him to return from the bench on Friday," said Hill.
"He presented to the playing group in a very candid and honest manner. Knowing these players well, I know how much they want the franchise to succeed, and have welcomed him back.
"The franchise and the Australian Rugby Union have shown trust in the off field program Kurtley has been and will continue to go through. So long as that trust is returned, we will continue to support Kurtley."
Apart from Beale's addition at the expense of Angus Roberts, Hill has named an unchanged team to the side that went down to the Crusaders last Sunday in Christchurch.
"The Chiefs will be the first New Zealand team visiting Melbourne this season. To have the challenge of playing the 2012 Super Rugby Champions in front of our members and home supporter base is a challenge we are looking forward to.
"It was great to see a number of players stand up to the challenge given to them last round, and that has been rewarded with selection this week.
"There are also a number of players who are vying for starting positions at the Club, which is healthy."
Rebels: 15 Jason Woodward, 14 Tom English, 13 Mitch Inman, 12 Rory Sidey, 11 Cooper Vuna, 10 James O'Connor, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Scott Higginbotham (captain), 7 Scott Fuglistaller, 6 Jarrod Saffy, 5 Cadeyrn Neville, 4 Hugh Pyle, 3 Laurie Weeks, 2 Ged Robinson, 1 Nic Henderson.
Replacements: 16 Shota Horie, 17 Paul Alo-Emile, 18 Luke Jones, 19 Gareth Delve, 20 Nic Stirzaker, 21 Kurtley Beale, 22 Lachlan Mitchell.
Date: Friday, May 3
Venue: AAMI Park, Melbourne
Kick-off: 19.40 (21.40 NZ time; 09.40 GMT)
Referee: Garratt Williamson (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Ian Smith (Australia), Richard Goswell (Australia)
TMO: Steve Leszczynski (Australia)