Force ring the changes for Highlanders clash

Super Rugby
by Sam Phillips

Dave Wessels has made six changes to the starting XV which shocked the Jaguares for the Force's clash with the Highlanders.

The changes are headlined by a completely new front row to tackle the Highlanders scrum on Saturday night.

Pek Cowan, Tatafu Polota-Nau and Jermaine Ainsley are all back in the side in place of Francois Van Wyk, Heath Tessman and Tetera Faulkner, respectively.

Brynard Stander comes in at openside flanker for Onehunga Havili, with Peter Grant starting at flyhalf in place of the injured Jono Lance.Luke Morahan has recovered from a fractured cheekbone. Photo: Getty ImagesWith Grant shifting from fullback, Luke Morahan returns to the back after recovering from a fractured cheekbone.

Lock Matt Philip returns to the bench from an injured foot, as does halfback Michael Ruru, who has recovered from an ankle injury he suffered in round seven.

Bill Meakes will captain what looks to be the strongest Force starting XV in many weeks.


Force team to face Highlanders

1. Pek Cowan

2. Tatafu Polota-Nau

3. Jermaine Ainsley

4. Richie Arnold

5. Adam Coleman

6. Ross Haylett-Petty

7. Brynard Stander

8. Richard Hardwick

9. Ian Prior

10. Peter Grant

11. Alex Newsome

12. Bill Meakes (C)

13. Curtis Rona

14. Semisi Masirewa

15. Luke Morahan


16. Anaru Rangi

17. Francois van Wyk

18. Tetera Faulkner

19. Matt Philip

20. Lewis Carmichael

21. Isireli Naisarani

22. Michael Ruru

23. James Verity-Amm