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Brumbies make 12 changes for Super clash with Force

By AAP
Tom Banks and Toni Pulu. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)

The ACT Brumbies will travel to Perth to take on the Western Force in Super Rugby Pacific without eight of their Wallabies stars.

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Coach Stephen Larkham has made 12 changes to his starting side for Saturday’s round 13 clash against the Force, who are looking to hold down the last spot in the top eight.

Rugby Australia’s Rugby World Cup resting policy sees James Slipper, Lachlan Lonergan, Allan Alaalatoa, Nick Frost, Rob Valetini, Nic White, Len Ikitau and Tom Wright rested for the Brumbies’ trip to the west.

In their place centre Hudson Creighton gets his first Super start, while Blake Schoupp and Rhys Van Nek start in the front row, with Billy Pollard at hooker.

Tom Hooper makes his return to the Brumbies’ run-on side to partner Darcy Swain in the second row, with Jack Wright the reserve lock.

In the back row, Charlie Cale comes in at blindside, with Rory Scott in the No.7 jersey and Pete Samu anchoring the scrum.

Ryan Lo nergan will lead the side at halfback, with Jack Debreczeni getting a start at five-eighth ahead of Noah Lolesio, while Andy Muirhead is the new fullback in place of Wright.

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Having been named in the Junior Wallabies squad on Wednesday, young halfback Klayton Thorn is on debut off the bench for the second-placed side.

Veteran Jesse Mogg will add plenty of experience to the Brumbies side, with the fullback named to a game-day squad for the first time this year.

“While we’ve made a lot of changes, mostly due to Wallaby rest, the message from us doesn’t change and we’re backing this group to go to Perth and execute their role for the team,” Larkham said.

“We know this is a big game for the Force, so we’ll have to match their energy, but everyone in this group knows what’s expected of them and our focus is on preparing well for Saturday night.”

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Brumbies: Blake Schoupp, Billy Pollard, Rhys Van Nek, Darcy Swain, To m Hooper, Charlie Cale, Rory Scott, Pete Sa mu, Ryan Lonergan (c), Jack Debreczeni, Corey Toole, Tamati Tua, Hudson Creighton, Ollie Sapsford, Andy Muirhead. Res: Connal McInerney, Fred Kaihea, Sefo Kautai, Jack Wright, Luke Reimer, Klayton Thorn, Noah Lolesio, Jesse Mogg.

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