Haylett-Petty ruled out of Hurricanes match

Super Rugby
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman in Japan

Wallabies back Dane Haylett-Petty is being kept in cotton wool by the Rebels, sitting out of their clash with the Hurricanes.

Haylett-Petty is still suffering concussion symptoms from a collision in Melbourne's loss to the Waratahs a fortnight ago, with coach Dave Wessels opting to give him another week off to recover.

The Rebels have the bye next week, meaning his next outing would be against the Jaguares on April 14.

Jack Maddocks will retain his spot at fullback in Haylett-Petty's absence.

Winger Sefa Naivalu has been dropped to the bench, with Tom English coming into the starting side for the critical matchup.

Hooker Anaru Rangi has edged out Wallabies back-up Jordan Uelese for the starting rake spot, while Lopeti Timani comes in at six, with Angus Cottrell shifting to openside flanker.

England international Geoff Parling has been left out of the 23 altogether, with Matt Philip starting and Ross Haylett-Petty the only lock option on a 6-2 bench.

Matt Philip is back in the starting side. Photo: RUGBY.com.au/Stuart WalmsleyWessels said decisions weren't easy this week.

"I can honestly say this week has been the toughest selection I’ve ever had to make," he said. 

"We are very fortunate to have so many players fit, it’s been incredibly hard and I’ve had a few sleepless nights.

“In our coaches’ discussion, I’ve never had less of a consensus than we had this week. It’s a great problem to have.”

The Rebels are the first Australian team to play a Kiwi team in 2018, vying to break a 0-26 run against Kiwi Super Rugby sides that dates back to April 2016, when the Waratahs beat the Chiefs in Sydney.

That, though, wasn't something Wessels was keen to harp on ahead of the week seven match.

“They’re a good side and you obviously have to respect that. But our focus has been – as it is every week – on playing in a way that makes the people of Melbourne proud.”

The Hurricanes named their team earlier on Wednesday, with Ardie Savea and Matt Proctor left out, but Vaea Fifita returning.

The Rebels take on the Hurricanes on Friday night at AAMI Park, kicking off at 7:45pm, LIVE on FOX SPORTS and via RUGBY.com.au RADIO. Buy tickets here.

TEAM

Rebels team to face Hurricanes

1. Tetera Faulkner

2. Anaru Rangi

3. Jermaine Ainsley

4. Matt Philip

5. Adam Coleman

6. Lopeti Timani

7. Angus Cottrell

8. Amanaki Mafi

9. Will Genia

10. Jack Debreczeni

11. Marika Koroibete

12. Billy Meakes  

13. Reece Hodge

14. Tom English

15. Jack Maddocks

Reserves    

16. Jordan Uelese

17. Ben Daley

18. Sam Talakai

19. Ross Haylett-Petty

20. Colby Fainga’a

21. Richard Hardwick

22. Michael Ruru

23. Sefa Naivalu