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Force ring the changes for Chiefs challenge

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The Western Force have named a team with a host of changes to the squad that beat the Kings for this week’s clash against the Chiefs at nib Stadium on Saturday.

Ross Haylett-Petty moves from blindside flanker back into the second row and will partner with young Scottish lock, Lewis Carmichael, who has joined the club as injury cover.

Matt Philip (foot) and Richie Arnold (calf) will both miss the game through injury.

Local product Richard Hardwick comes back into the starting side at No.8 with club captain Ben McCalman ruled out with shoulder soreness.

In the halves, experienced halfback Ian Prior will make his first start of the season replacing Michael Ruru (ankle), while exciting young playmaker Luke Burton has been rewarded with his first start of the season, in the No.10 jersey.

Wallaby Luke Morahan returns to the fold on the left wing while Curtis Rona is back in the starting XV on the right wing replacing Chance Peni (groin).

In the reserves, Francois van Wyk will make his first appearance of the 2017 season and Brynard Stander returns from a shoulder injury. 21-year-old scrumhalf Mitch Short who also signed as injury cover earlier in the year is in line to make his Vodafone Super Rugby debut.

Western Force head coach Dave Wessels says he is eager for his team to put in another strong performance at home and treat the Sea of Blue to some exciting rugby.

“We feel like we’re making good progress as a team and to be able to test ourselves against the Chiefs, who have been one of the standout teams in Super Rugby for a few years now is exciting.

“We want to see as many people out at the ground as possible for what should be a really exciting game.”

Western Force

1. Ben Daley , 2. Tatafu Polota-Nau , 3. Tetera Faulkner , 4. Lewis Carmichael* , 5. Ross Haylett-Petty , 6. Isi Naisarani , 7. Matt Hodgson (capt) , 8. Richard Hardwick , 9. Ian Prior , 10. Luke Burton , 11. Luke Morahan , 12. Bill Meakes , 13. Marcel Brache , 14. Curtis Rona , 15. Dane Haylett-Petty

Replacements : 16. Heath Tessmann , 17. Francois Van Wyk , 18. Pek Cowan , 19. Onehunga Havilli , 20. Brynard Stander , 21. Mitch Short** , 22. Jono Lance , 23. Alex Newsome ,

*Denotes Super Rugby Debut
**Potential Super Rugby Debut

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