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Tupou starts as Rebels change three for Brumbies

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Melbourne Rebels Super rugby head coach Dave Wessels has named a team with three changes for this Saturday’s Super rugby match against the Brumbies in Canberra.

Junior Wallabies representative Semisi Tupou will make his first start as one of three changes to the Rebels’ on-field line-up.

Michael Ruru will return to the starting line-up for the injured Will Genia, while Tom English returns to the centres in place of Billy Meakes.

The Rebels travel to the nation’s capital having already defeated the Brumbies 33-10 in Week 4 at AAMI Park, and will be aiming to improve on their overall record at GIO Stadium – Melbourne having won there only once from five attempts.

Melbourne Rebels Head Coach, Dave Wessels said: “We’re obviously disappointed with our recent results, but that’s forced us to reflect honestly on everyone’s performance. The players have been excellent in training this week, and show a lot of love for each other and club. We’re looking forward to the weekend.

“It’s exciting to see a young local guy like Semisi (Tupou) earn his first start – a big tick to our development program.

“We have a number of very talented young Victorians in the squad that will come through over the next couple of months. Semisi thoroughly deserves his opportunity.”

Melbourne Rebels

1. Fereti Sa’aga , 2. Anaru Rangi , 3. Sam Talakai , 4. Geoff Parling , 5. Adam Coleman (capt) , 6. Angus Cottrell , 7. Colby Fainga’a , 8. Amanaki Mafi , 9. Michael Ruru , 10. Jack Debreczeni , 11. Marika Koroibete , 12. Reece Hodge , 13. Tom English , 14. Semisi Tupou , 15. Jack Maddocks

Replacements : 16. Nathan Charles , 17. Tetera Faulkner , 18. Jermaine Ainsley , 19. Matt Philip , 20. Sam Jeffries , 21. Lopeti Timani , 22. Harrison Goddard , 23. Billy Meakes

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