Tough duo return to boost Force forwards
Chris Alcock. Pic: Getty Images

Destructive forward pair Hugh McMeniman and Chris Alcock are back in the Western Force starting side for the Super Rugby clash with last year's runners-up ACT Brumbies at nib Stadium tomorrow night.

McMeniman's inclusion completes his return from a shoulder injury while flanker Alcock will continue his run of playing in every match since he arrived from NSW last season.

Second-rower Wilhelm Steenkamp and flanker Angus Cottrell move to the bench.

No changes have been made to the Force's back line but coach Michael Foley has made changes to his reserves, opting for an extra back, Jayden Hayward.

Hayward scored 24 points for Force A in their 29-23 win over Reds A in their Pacific Rugby Cup opener last Friday.

Foley said his team was disappointed with the 22-point loss to the Waratahs last Sunday.

"Some of our discipline to system let us down, but the boys showed great spirit to still be in the fight at the 65th-minute mark," he said.

"Our goal is to harness the individual fighting spirit into an 80-minute team performance."

Brumbies director of rugby Laurie Fisher expected the Force to bring a stifling game plan and predicted an aerial bombardment.

"They will defend well, they will have a nice tight game plan, probably something similar to last year where they will try and frustrate us," Fisher said.

"We need to take the sting out of them, make a statement in the first 15-20 minutes."

The Brumbies have made two changes to the side that lost 27-17 to the Queensland Reds. Outside centre Tevita Kuridrani will start while Andrew Smith, has been dropped to the bench. Robbie Coleman replaces Joe Tomane.


Western Force: Tetera Faulkner, Nathan Charles, Kieran Longbottom, Sam Wykes, Hugh McMeniman, Chris Alcock, Matt Hodgson (c), Ben McCalman, Alby Mathewson, Zack Holmes, Nick Cummins, Kyle Godwin, Junior Rasolea, Patrick Dellit, Luke Morahan. Reserves: Heath Tessmann, Pek Cowan, Ollie Hoskins, Wilhelm Steenkamp, Angus Cottrell, Ian Prior, Sias Ebersohn, Jayden Hayward.

Brumbies: Jesse Mogg, Henry Speight, Tevita Kuridrani, Pat McCabe, Robbie Coleman, Matt Toomua, Nic White, Jarrad Butler, David Pocock, Ben Mowen (c), Sam Carter, Scott Fardy, Ben Alexander, Stephen Moore, Scott Sio. Reserves: Siliva Siliva, Ruan Smith, Ruaidhri Murphy, Leon Power, Lachlan McCaffrey, Conrad Hoffman, Andrew Smith, Lionel Cronje.

The West Australian

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