Grant pivotal for Force against Highlanders

Thu, 18 May 2017 08:34
Large peter grant western force h s

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: South African Peter Grant will start at flyhalf as the Western Forces welcome back a host of players for the Highlanders clash.

Veteran Grant will replace Jono Lance who will miss the game due to a hand injury he sustained last week against the Jaguares in Buenos Aires.

Inside centre Bill Meakes will captain the club for the first time and becomes the 12th man to do so, as he lines up next to centre partner Curtis Rona.

In the back three, Luke Morahan returns from a fractured cheekbone and will start at fullback.

Tatafu Polota-Nau returns as the starting hooker jersey after missing the Jaguares match last week. Jermaine Ainsley will start at tighthead after recovering from an elbow injury he suffered against the Crusaders in Round Five.

Brynard Stander is the only change in the back row, as the ferocious ball runner is set to start at openside flank.
 
In the reserves, Anaru Rangi and Tetera Faulkner will look to bring plenty of impact off the bench, along with locks Lewis Carmichael and Matt Philip who makes his return from an injured foot.

Michael Ruru is the last inclusion in the reserves, returning from an ankle injury he suffered in Round Seven against the Kings.

Western Force: 15 Luke Morahan, 14 Semisi Masirewa, 13 Curtis Rona, 12 Bill Meakes (captain), 11 Alex Newsome, 10 Peter Grant, 9 Ian Prior, 8 Richard Hardwick, 7 Brynard Stander, 6 Ross Haylett-Petty, 5 Adam Coleman, 4 Richie Arnold, 3 Jermaine Ainsley, 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 1 Pek Cowan.
Replacement: 16 Anaru Rangi, 17 Francois van Wyk, 18 Tetera Faulkner, 19 Matt Philip, 20 Lewis Carmichael, 21 Isireli Naisarani, 22 Michael Ruru, 23 James Verity-Amm

Date: Saturday, May 20
Venue: nib Stadium, Perth
Kick-off: 17.45 (09.45 GMT, 19.45 NZ Time)
Referee: Shuhei Kubo (Japan)
Assistant referees: Ed Martin (Australia), Damon Murphy (Australia)
TMO: Ian Smith (Australia)

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Reds 15 4 0 11 21
Waratahs 15 4 0 11 19
Rebels 15 1 1 13 9
Pool NZ
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Crusaders 15 14 0 1 63
Hurricanes 15 12 0 3 58
Chiefs 15 12 1 2 57
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 51
Blues 15 7 1 7 37
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Team P W D L Pts
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Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Bulls 15 4 0 11 20
Sunwolves 15 2 0 13 12
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Lions 15 14 0 1 65
Sharks 15 9 1 5 42
Jaguares 15 7 0 8 33
Kings 15 6 0 9 28