Emirates Western Force Coach John Mitchell has named his team for Friday night’s Investec Super 14 Week 14 clash with the Brumbies at Subiaco Oval.
Rugby WA announced that the side will be pushing for its first victory over an Australian opponent this season and its first over the Brumbies in the final outing for the 2008 season.
Mitchell has made just two changes to his starting XV for the derby clash, with Chris O’Young to wear the number 9 jersey and Pek Cowan returning from a thumb injury to resume at loosehead prop.
O’Young will start at scrumhalf for the first time in three matches and takes the place of James Stannard, who returns to the reserves bench.
Cowan, who suffered a nasty compound dislocation to his thumb against the Chiefs a fortnight ago, returns to the position he had occupied for six straight matches before being sidelined for last week’s clash with the Hurricanes in Wellington.
Veteran Emirates Western Force and former Brumbies lock David Pusey will line up for his 50th appearance in Super Rugby, while vice captain Matt Giteau will make his second appearance against his former team.
Mitchell said his side will approach the match with an attacking mentality.
“After struggling to get through the line against the Hurricanes last week, we’re looking to increase our attacking impetus this week and we’ll need to play well as a team,” said Mitchell.
Mitchell said both sides have plenty to play for despite being out of finals contention.
“You can be remembered for your season by finishing on a high note or finishing off with a loss,” he said.
“We’ve got the opportunity to go seven (wins) and six (losses) and you’d much rather have it looking that way over the other way.”
“We want to finish our season on a positive note and leave Subiaco Oval knowing that we have put in a complete performance.”
Overall head to head: Played 2, Brumbies 2, EWF 0.
Last met: 20 April 2007, Brumbies 14 def EWF 12, Canberra Stadium.
Emirates Western Force v Brumbies
Friday 16 May, 2008
Subiaco Oval, Perth
1. Pek Cowan
2. Tai McIsaac
3. Troy Takiari
4. David Pusey
5. Nathan Sharpe (c)
6. Matt Hodgson
7. David Pocock
8. Richard Brown
9. Chris O’Young
10. Matt Giteau (vc)
11. Drew Mitchell
12. James O’Connor
13. Josh Tatupu
14. Dane Haylett-Petty
15. Cameron Shepherd
16. Luke Holmes
17. Kieran Longbottom
18. Sitaleki Timani
19. Sam Wykes
20. James Stannard
21. Scott Daruda
22. Haig Sare