Super Rugby

Force change two for Chiefs in Hamillton

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The Western Force have named a Super Rugby side with two changes to the side for Saturday’s match in Hamilton against the Chiefs.

Hooker Heath Tessmann returns to the starting XV and Brynard Stander starts a blindside flanker in the only changes to the side.

The Force have played four matches and won one they are hoping to leave Hamilton with their second win of the season.

Head Coach Michael Foley says the side had learnt some valuable lessons from last week’s loss to the Hurricanes.

“We were disappointed in our performance on Friday night. For the first 60 minutes of the game, we created enough opportunities to take points,” he said.

“However, at key times we gave possession away and released pressure too easily. A lot of the lead up work in attack was what we’ve been practicing and came on the back of good set piece and defence.

“Ultimately, we will stay true to the way we want to play and won’t lose sight of what we are trying to achieve, but to take the next step and win those games, will mean being more relentless to finish our work when we have momentum at different times throughout the game.”

Tessmann comes into the starting front-row and will join the familiar pairing of Pek Cowan and Tetera Faulkner. The formidable pairing of Adam Coleman and Ross Haylett-Petty will start in the second row for the third straight week.

In the backrow, Stander comes into the starting line-up at blindside with Matt Hodgson at openside and the versatile Angus Cottrell will look to make an impact moving to No.8.

In an unchanged back line Alby Mathewson and Peter Grant will look to get the Force on the front foot and continue to build their chemistry while Solomoni (Junior) Rasolea and Ben Tapuai again partner in the midfield. Semisi Masirewa and Marcel Brache will man the wings while Dane Haylett-Petty will look to continue his fine form at fullback.

Coming off the bench, Ben McCalman will look to make his impact felt when he comes off the bench while Ryan Louwrens and Albert Nikoro will be keen to make the most of their opportunity after showing some good signs in theirs stints off the bench last week.

Western Force

1. Pekahou Cowan , 2. Heath Tessmann , 3. Tetera Faulkner , 4. Ross Haylett-Petty , 5. Adam Coleman , 6. Brynard Stander , 7. Matt Hodgson (C) , 8. Angus Cottrell , 9. Alby Mathewson , 10. Peter Grant , 11. Semisi Masirewa , 12. Solomoni (Junior Rasolea) , 13. Ben Tapuai , 14. Marcel Brache , 15. Dane Haylett-Petty

Replacements : 16. Chris Heiberg , 17. Nathan Charles , 18. Jermaine Ainsley , 19. Sitiveni (Stevie) Mafi , 20. Ben McCalman , 21. Ryan Louwrens , 22. Ian Prior , 23. Albert Nikoro

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