The Brisbane City team has been named ahead of their Buildcorp NRC semi-final clash against the Sydney Stars this Saturday, 24 October, at Ballymore Stadium.
In Round 9, Brisbane City continued their winning run, securing a 71-24 win over the Greater Sydney Rams to finish the regular season as undefeated minor premiers and holders of the Horan-Little Shield for 2015.
Brisbane City head coach Nick Stiles has made two changes to his starting team from Round 9, with a further four changes on the bench.
In the forwards, Brothers back-rower Luke Beauchamp returns to blindside flanker in place of Waita Setu, who shifts to the bench. In the outside backs, St.George Queensland Reds and GPS winger Chris Kuridrani replaces Alex Gibbon on the right wing with Gibbon also moving to the reserves.
The front-row of Matt Mafi, Andrew Ready and Sam Talakai will again be supported by locks Ben Hyne, who was named this week in the Australian Barbarians team, and Cadeyrn Neville. Captain Liam Gill and Number 8 Adam Korczyk will join Beauchamp in the loose-forwards.
In the backline, vice-captain Nick Frisby and Jake McIntyre will team up for the ninth consecutive time this season in the halves. After scoring 21 points against the Rams, McIntyre extended his lead as the competition’s leading points-scorer, finishing the regular season with 118 points (one try, 37 conversions and one penalty).
Sunnybank’s Henry Taefu will partner last week’s ‘man-of-the-match’ Samu Kerevi in the centres. Junior Laloifi, who was this week announced as ‘The Ballymore Kid’, will again start in the 11 jersey and also leads the competition in terms of tries, finishing the regular-season with a tally of 14. Chris Kuridrani and Karmichael Hunt complete backline.
On the bench, Ryan Freney, Markus Vanzati and Feao Fotuaika will provide front-row cover. Corey Thomas from GPS also returns to the bench as a replacement lock.
University of Queensland scrumhalf Moses Sorovi, who played nearly 60 minutes of Rugby last week due to an injury to Frisby, will once again don the 21 jersey. Gibbon and Souths’ Andy Muirhead round out the match day 23.
Stiles said that his team was pleased to pick up the minor premiership and the Horan-Little Shield last week, but the team has shifted their focus to the semi-final clash against the Stars.
“We are all really happy with how things eventuated in the regular season. To share last week’s victory with our fans on the field after the match was one of the highlights of the season,” Stiles said.
"However, we still have a job to do and I have been impressed with the way the lads have moved on from the highs of last weekend."
When asked about Laloifi’s extraordinary season, Stiles said it was just reward that he received ‘The Ballymore Kid’ contract.
“Junior has been exceptional for us all season. Not only does he have a knack for scoring tries, but he also creates space and opportunities for the players around him. He has a big role to play for us against the Stars.”
QRU has introduced a new ticket offer for the 2015 season, with registered junior club participants under the age of 16 given free entry to any Queensland-based NRC game when accompanied by a paying adult.
Tickets start at just $5 for juniors, $10 for concession and $15 for adults when purchased online prior to the match.
Tickets can be purchased at: www.redsrugby.com.au
Saturday’s match kicks off at 6:30pm (AEST) and the match will also be televised on Fox Sports Channel 502.
McInnes Wilson Lawyers Brisbane City side to face Sydney Stars on Saturday, 24 October.
1. Matt Mafi – Brothers
2. Andrew Ready – Reds/Easts
3. Sam Talakai – Reds/GPS
4. Ben Hyne - Brothers
5. Cadeyrn Neville – Reds/Manly
6. Luke Beauchamp - Brothers
7. Liam Gill (C) – Reds/Sunnybank
8. Adam Korczyk – Reds/University of Queensland
9. Nick Frisby – Reds/GPS
10. Jake McIntyre – Reds/Sunnybank
11. Junior Laloifi – Reds/Sunnybank
12. Henry Taefu – Sunnybank
13. Samu Kerevi – Reds/GPS
14. Chris Kuridrani - Reds/GPS
15. Karmichael Hunt – Reds/Brothers Reserves
16. Ryan Freney - GPS
17. Markus Vanzati - Souths
18. Feao Fotuaika - Sunnybank
19. Corey Thomas - GPS
20. Waita Setu - GPS
21. Moses Sorovi – University of Queensland
22. Alex Gibbon – Southern Districts
23. Andy Muirhead - Souths