Koroibete named for Super Rugby debut

Marika Koroibete has been named for his Super Rugby debut, finally shaking off a knee issue to be named for the Rebels.

It will be a baptism of fire for Koroibete, as the Rebels travel to Wellington to face the defending champion Hurricanes and All Blacks winger Julian Savea.

Koroibete is one of three high-profile inclusions in the Rebels’ side, with Wallabies squad member James Hanson and centre Mitch Inman  making their return from injury.

Captain Nic Stirzaker has also recovered from a concussion to be named in the starting side, after lasting just 10 minutes of the opening round.

Rebels coach Tony McGahan said they were optimistic of improvement, welcoming the trio in round two.

“There’s no bigger challenge in Super Rugby right now than the defending champions in Wellington but we’ve prepared well and the return of key players will provide some much-needed experience and firepower, “ he said.

“We learnt some good lessons in round one that we’ve taken away so our attention has been on fixing up those key areas at training this week or else good sides will continue to punish our mistakes.”

It wasn't all positive news for the rebels with Koroibete's wing partner Sefa Naivalu unable to pass a fitness test in time to make the Wellington trip.

The Hurricanes will have their biggest stars back in their starting XV, with Beauden Barrett and Dane Coles off the bench for their first home clash and Nehe Milner-Skudder returning from injury.

The Rebels take on the Hurricanes on Saturday at 3:15pm AEDT.

TEAM

Rebels to take on the Hurricanes

1. Cruze Ah-Nau

2. James Hanson

3. Laurie Weeks

4. Steve Cummins

5. Lopeti Timani

6. Jordy Reid

7. Colby Fainga’a

8. Amanaki Mafi

9. Nic Stirzaker (Captain)

10. Jackson Garden-Bachop

11. Tom English

12. Reece Hodge

13. Mitch Inman

14. Marika Koroibete*^

15. Jack Debreczeni

Reserves

16. Pat Leafa

17. Tom Moloney

18. Tyrel Lomax

19. Culum Retallick

20. Jake Schatz

21. Ben Meehan

22. Sione Tuipulotu

23. Ben Volavola

Hurricanes team to take on the Rebels

1. Chris Eves

2. Dane Coles

3. Jeffery Toomaga-Allen

4. James Blackwell

5. Michael Fatialofa

6. Brad Shields

7. Ardie Savea

8. James Prinsep

9. TJ Perenara

10. Beauden Barrett

11. Julian Savea

12. Ngani

13. Matthew Proctor

14. Wince Aso

15. Nehe Milner-Skudder

Reserves

16. Ricky Riccitelli

17. Ben May

18. Mike Kainga

19. Mark Abbott

20. Callum Gibbins

21. Chris Smylie

22. Otere Black

23. Jordie Barrett

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