Western Force coach Michael Foley has rewarded the players that put Melbourne Rebels to the sword by naming the same squad for Saturday's clash with the Highlanders in Dunedin.

He has also added tough back-rower Hugh McMeniman, who missed the 32-7 victory with a neck injury.

However, after Saturday's performance by the forwards, he is no guarantee to be in the match squad.

The Force will face a tougher test against the Highlanders, who will be rested coming off a bye.

Scrum-half Alby Mathewson, man of the match and scorer of the Force's first try against the Rebels, will hold down the No.9 jumper.

Mathewson was coached by Highlanders mentor Jamie Joseph when he played for the Wellington Lions. Joseph, a ferocious All Black flanker, demands his side mirrors that style and Mathewson is expecting a torrid time at the breakdown.

"Jamie Joseph is old school, but he's a tough man and the breakdown is where it matters. He wants the whole team to be physical," Mathewson said.

"The Highlanders are a very physical team at the breakdown and we are going to have to be strong there if we want to be able to use our backs out wide.

"Out wide they also counter ruck a lot so we have to make sure the breakdown is a strong point for us so we can play some running rugby.

"They will be a tough ask. Physically they will be strong."

Mathewson said confidence was high after Saturday's victory, but he warned that "one sunny day does not make a summer".

"We got it right against the Rebels. We showed what we are capable of," he said.

"We can replicate that but we want to be consistent. It's no point having a win one week and dropping off the week after."

The Force should be able to stick to their more open style under the closed roof of the Forsyth Barr Stadium.

They have beaten the Highlanders in their past five encounters, three in New Zealand, and the Highlanders will not need reminding of last season's dramatic last-minute win when Force full-back Jayden Hayward slotted a penalty.

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

- Force A suffered its first defeat in the Pacific Rugby Cup, going down 36-24 to the Fiji Warriors at Ballymore in Brisbane.

Meanhile, the 32-7 win over Melbourne Rebels looks like being a financial bonus for the club with tickets to their next home game against the Chiefs on Saturday March 22 selling fast.

The West Australian

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