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Brumbies aiming for a hat trick of victories over South African conference teams

By Online Editors
James Slipper. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

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Scrumhalf Matt Lucas and prop James Slipper are the only two changes to the starting XV for the Brumbies’ fixture with the Jaguares at the Estadio Jose Amalfitani, Velez Sarsfeld on Sunday morning, Australian time.

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Lucas comes into the team in place of Joe Powell, whilst Slipper is selected ahead of Scott Sio as Head Coach Dan McKellar aims to win a third game in succession and claim a second win in South America, after defeating the Jaguares on their own turf back in 2017.

The Brumbies have certainly built up a head of steam over the past fortnight with back-to-back wins over South African opposition, starting with the Lions at GIO Stadium in Canberra and following that up with an epic, backs-to-the-wall defensive masterclass to stun the Stormers 19-17 in Cape Town.

Man of the match in the latter fixture, Jahrome Brown, keeps his place in the backrow alongside Tom Cusack and Pete Samu with Slipper joined in the front row by Folau Fainga’a and Allan Alaalatoa.

Rory Arnold, who was immense in the win over the Stormers, tackling his heart out and scoring a crucial try, continues in the second row alongside Sam Carter.

In the backs, Lucas comes into the side to form a halfback partnership with skipper Christian Lealiifano whilst the midfield pairing of Tom Wright and Tevita Kuridrani are given further licence to shine.

Out wide, Toni Pulu and Henry Speight patrol the wings, Speight having made two try-saving tackles at Newlands, whilst Tom Banks, scorer of the third try of the afternoon in the Republic, remains at fullback.

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Connal McInerney, who flew into Buenos Aires to join up with the squad after Josh Mann-Rea was forced to return home from South Africa injured, will be straight into the action, named as one of five forwards on the bench, alongside Scott Sio and Leslie Leuluaialii-Makin as front row cover.

As last week, Darcy Swain and Murray Douglas are named amongst the finishers, both having contributed mightily to the defensive effort at Newlands. Powell reverts to the bench with Lucas starting whilst Irae Simone and Andy Muirhead round out the matchday squad.

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