Foley changes line-up to get winning feeling
Jayden Hayward. Pic: Danella Bevis

Western Force coach Michael Foley has made six changes to his line-up for tomorrow's Super Rugby clash with the Melbourne Rebels at nib Stadium.

He has retained the back line that finished the game against the Brumbies, with Jayden Hayward starting at full-back, Sias Ebersohn at fly-half and Luke Morahan on the wing.

He has made two changes to the pack with injuries to second- rower Hugh McMeniman (back) and flanker Chris Alcock (shoulder). They have been replaced by Wilhelm Steenkamp and Angus Cottrell, while prop Pek Cowan will start for the first time.

Hayward, who was impressive with ball in hand when he came off the bench last Saturday, said the side would go back to basics against the Rebels and had to improve their kicking game.

"We've simplified things a little bit," Hayward said.

"Coming out of our own half … the last couple of weeks we haven't quite nailed it.

"If it's on to have a run then we'll have a run but if it's on to play safe or play territory then we will."

The match will be captain Matt Hodgson's 100th for the club.

"It's a big occasion," Hayward said. "There's a lot of motivation there for this week. It's hugely important we get a 'W' on the board this week."

Foley said the team wanted to produce a performance worthy of Hodgson's achievement.

"Saturday is a significant and fitting milestone for Matt and his family," Foley said.

"The commitment Matt has made to the club … has earned him the respect of every member of the Force.

"Our focus is to be stronger from the start of the match."

The Rebels have also made changes from the side that beat the Cheetahs 35-14 last Friday. Max Lahiff and Paul Alo-Emile are named in the front row and Cadeyrn Neville in the second row while flanker Colby Fainga'a and winger Tom Kingston will make their first starts.

Japanese international Shota Horie and back-rower Lopeti Timani are on the reserves bench.

Force: Pek Cowan. Nathan Charles, Kieran Longbottom, Sam Wykes, Wilhelm Steenkamp, Angus Cottrell, Matt Hodgson (c), Ben McCalman, Alby Mathewson, Sias Ebersohn, Nick Cummins, Kyle Godwin, Junior Rasolea, Luke Morahan, Jayden Hayward. Reserves: Heath Tessmann, Tetera Faulkner, Ollie Hoskins, Adam Coleman, Brynard Stander, Ian Prior, Zack Holmes, Marcel Brache.

Rebels: Max Lahiff, Pat Leafa, Paul Alo-Emile, Hugh Pyle, Cadeyrn Neville, Sean McMahon, Colby Fainga'a, Scott Higginbotham (c), Luke Burgess, Angus Roberts, Tom English, Mitch Inman, Tamati Ellison, Tom Kingston, Jason Woodward. Reserves: Shota Horie, Toby Smith, Laurie Weeks, Luke Jones, Lopeti Timani, Ben Meehan, Bryce Hegarty, Lachlan Mitchell.

FIXTURES

TODAY

Hurricanes v Brumbies, Reds v Cheetahs

TOMORROW

Crusaders v Stormers, Western Force v Rebels, Bulls v Blues, Sharks v Lions

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