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'A bit of a sore spot for us': Force aiming to knock the Brumbies off their perch

By AAP
(Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

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Western Force centre Kyle Godwin has set his sights on knocking the Brumbies off their perch on Friday night, saying the round-one loss in Canberra remains a sore spot for the team.

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The Brumbies are the only unbeaten outfit in Super Rugby Pacific this season after winning their opening five matches.

But it could have been different had the Force held their nerve when clinging to a late lead in round one in Canberra.

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The Force hit the front through a Jake McIntyre try in the 77th minute.

But the euphoria was short lived with Lachie Lonergan crossing two minutes later to snatch the win for the Brumbies.

Godwin has been hanging out for Friday night’s rematch at HBF Park, with the former Wallaby eager to turn the tables.

“That last game was a bit of a sore spot for us,” Godwin said.

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“We definitely had that win in our grasp and we let it slip in the last couple of minutes.

“We learnt a lot of lessons there, personally as well myself. Hopefully we can get one-up on them tomorrow night.

“They’re undefeated this season and we want to be the team that knocks them off their perch tomorrow night.”

The Brumbies have opted to rest a host of key players for the match following last week’s bruising 16-12 win over the Queensland Reds.

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Wallabies forwards James Slipper and Allan Alaalatoa have been given the week off, while flyhalf Noah Lolesio will be missing because of an ankle injury.

Wallabies scrumhalf Nic White may also not play due to the impending birth of his third child.

White didn’t board the flight to Perth on Thursday, but he’s a chance to make the flight west on Friday.

If White doesn’t make the trip then Lachie Albert will replace him on the bench.

Brumbies coach Dan McKellar doesn’t want the Force to take his decision to rest players the wrong way.

“I want to make sure there’s no disrespect here to the opposition at all,” McKellar said.

“It was always part of our plan, (it was) a big scrum game last week against the Reds.

“Pretty much the best part of 12 hours on a plane or sitting at airports.

“So I just thought it was a good opportunity to freshen up the front row in particular, provide opportunity for boys who have worked hard.”

The changes means out-of-favour prop Scott Sio has been handed a starting berth.

The Force escaped with a last-gasp 20-18 win over Fijian Drua last week after inside centre Bayley Kuenzle nailed a penalty after the siren.

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