Hodgson returns for Force

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

The Western Force have  named a full strength lineup for  their final pre-season trial with captain Matt Hodgson returning for his first match of 2016.

The Force will be looking to secure back-to-back victories when they take on the Asia Pacific Dragons at McGillivray Oval on Saturday, 13th February.

Hodgson is the only remaining player from the Force’s inaugural season, heading into his 14th season of Super Rugby as he looks to guide his side to an improved 2016 finish.

Head Coach Michael Foley has made three changes to the starting lineup that defeated 2015 finalists the Hurricanes 28-0, headlined by the promotion of new recruit Jono Lance to starting flyhalf.

Lance made a strong first impression at his third Super Rugby club, playing a starring role last week setting up two tries and leading the backline in defense.

In other changes, experienced head Alby Matthewson replaces Ian Prior at halfback.

Fijian flyer Semisi Masirewa will get another taste of Super Rugby after being named on the bench for the second week on the trot, after scoring a try on debut.

The Asia Pacific Dragons side is an invitational side made up of players from the Japanese Top League and the Pacific Islands with some big names included for the match.

Former Wallaby Radike Samo will feature for the Dragons also includes former All Blacks Isaac Ross and Jimmy Cowan and Tongan 2015 Rugby World Cup representatives Latiume Fosita and Hale T-Pole.

The match kicks-off at 5:00PM local on Saturday, 13 February, with gates opening at 4:00PM.

Tickets are available both at the gate and online at a discounted rate, children under 17 get in free with a paying adult.

Click HERE to purchase tickets.

2016 Asteron Life Super Rugby – Pre-Season: Western Force v Asia Pacific Dragons, McGillivray Oval, Mt Claremont, Saturday, 13 February 2016 Kick-off: 5.00pm (AWST)

Western Force (Team):

1. Pek Cowan

2. Nathan Charles

3. Guy Millar

4. Steve Mafi

5. Adam Coleman

6. Brynard Stander

7. Matt Hodgson (C)

8. Angus Cottrell

9. Alby Mathewson

10. Jono Lance

11. Albert Nikoro

12. Kyle Godwin

13. Marcel Brache

14. Luke Morahan

15. Dane Haylett-Petty

Reserves

16. Heath Tessmann

17. Chris Heiberg

18. Jermaine Ainsley

19. Ross Haylett-Petty

20. Chris Alcock

21. Richard Hardwick

22. Kane Koteka

 23. Ian Prior

 24. Peter Grant

 25. Solomoni Rasolea

 26. Ammon Matuauto

 27. Semisi Masirewa

 28. Maalonga Konelio

 29. Rory Walton

 (Blank Jersey)

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