Coleman to be rested for Sharks clash

Mon, Mar 18, 2019, 11:46 PM
Beth Newman
by Beth Newman
Adam Coleman will miss this weekend's clash with the Sharks. Photo: Walmsley
Adam Coleman will miss this weekend's clash with the Sharks. Photo: Walmsley

Rebels lock Adam Coleman is  set to sit out Melbourne's clash with the Sharks on the weekend.

Coleman is being rested for the clash and returned to Australia on Monday night AEDT while the bulk of the squad travelled to Durban for the second tour leg.

Coach Dave Wessels, speaking before the team left for South Africa, had suggested this week's match against the Sharks would be a chance to rotate some of his international players.

It is unclear which of the other Rebels Wallabies could miss the clash and indeed what impact last weekend's 36-33 loss to the Lions will have on selection decisions.

The Rebels' undefeated 2019 ended in Johannesburg last weekend with that heartbreaking loss depriving them of their first win in South Africa, making the Sharks match even more important.

Melbourne plays the Sharks on Sunday morning (AEDT) in Durban before a pivotal derby against the Reds in Brisbane on March 30.

The Rebels second row is one of its most competitive areas, with Coleman, Matt Philip, Ross Haylett-Petty and Luke Jones all starting roles through the season so far.

As part of the Wallabies' resting strategy, Rugby Australia is understood to have proposed two possible matches for players to sit out, ideally on overseas trips rather than in front of home, but the final decision sits with the club.

Every Super Rugby club has had a player sit out at least once this year - Kurtley Beale was left out of the Waratahs' round one team, while the Reds rested Izack Rodda and Taniela Tupou from last week's win over the Sunwolves in Tokyo.

Brumbies duo David Pocock and Allan Alaalatoa have missed weeks with injuries but it was revealed last week that those layoffs would also count towards their required rest.

The Rebels will name their full team on Thursday ahead of the weekend's game.

Australia's teams aren't the only franchises enacting a resting policy - New Zealand's Super Rugby teams have also been rotating their Test stars as part of pre-World Cup preparations this season.

The Rebels take on the Sharks in Durban on Saturday March 23, 5:15pm local, Sunday March 24, 2:15am AEDT, LIVE on FOX SPORTS.

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