Rebels go strong for Reds trial

Super Rugby
by Sam Phillips

The Melbourne Rebels have matched fire with fire by naming a full strength team for tomorrow night's trial against the Queensland Reds at Ballymore.

After narrowly missing out on the Quarter Finals at the Brisbane Tens, coach Tony McGahan has named all of his available Wallabies in the starting side among the 26-man squad.

The Rebels' standard of play lifted at the Tens after a sloppy 27-5 trial loss to the Western Force at Bond University last Monday.

McGahan will be hoping it lifts another notch when they take on a full strength Reds team tomorrow night.

At flyhalf, where McGahan has been faced with the dilemma of starting Jackson Garden-Bachop and Jack Debreczeni, the brains trust have opted for the former.McGahan told RUGBY.com.au after the first trial that he did not get a chance to see Garden-Bachop with much front foot ball, which may have contributed to the decision.

There is still no sign of Marika Koroibete, who is in a race against the clock to be fit for the Rebels' Super Rugby opener against the Blues at AAMI Park next Thursday after suffering a knee ligament injury at training.

Wallabies James Hanson, Toby Smith and Reece Hodge as well as Colby Fainga'a will have their first chance to play extended minutes after being rested in the Force trial.

TEAM

Rebels team to play the Reds at Ballymore, Tuesday February 14.

1. Toby Smith

2. James Hanson

3. Laurie Weeks

4. Culum Retallick

5. Steve Cummins

6. Lopeti Timani

7. Colby Fainga’a

8. Amanaki Mafi

9. Nic Stirzaker

10. Jackson Garden-Bachop

11. Jonah Placid

12. Reece Hodge

13. Tom English

14. Sefa Naivalu

15. Jack Maddocks

Reserves

16. Jordan Uelese

17. Cruze Ah-Nau

18. Tyrel Lomax

19. Murray Douglas

20. Jordy Reid

21. Ben Meehan

22. Sione Tuipulotu

23. Jack Debreczeni

24. Jake Schatz

25. Dennis Pili-Gaitau

26. Ben Volavola

*Jersey numbers may change

Redsrugby.com.au will be streaming the game, from 7:30pm AEDT, 6:30pm local

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