Force make two changes for Queensland Reds

The Western Force have named their team to play the Reds this Saturday at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium on Saturday with former Brumbies back Zack Holmes starting at fullback.

Holmes has been promoted to fullback in the absence of Dane Haylett-Petty, who has been ruled out with a foot injury.

In other news loosehead prop Francois van Wyk will make his first start for the Western Force after he scored the Force’s final try in last weekend victory over the Waratahs.

Van Wyk has played three matches off the bench for the Western Australian club, and will pack down alongside Wallabies Nathan Charles and Tetera Faulkner.

The 24-year-old front-rower replaces Pek Cowan, who will be monitored regarding his pending return after scans cleared him of any serious injury having been carried from the field on Sunday.

The reserves list sees two new additions, with prop Chris Heiberg and winger Mitchell Scott in line to make their Super Rugby debuts.

Heiberg was previously a member of the Stormers’ match day squad during the 2013 season prior to joining the Western Force, while Scott is in line for his first opportunity at this level after joining the Western Australian squad from ITM Cup runners-up, the Tasman Makos, at the end of the 2014 season.

Western Force Head Coach Michael Foley says his side is ready for another physical encounter against the Reds this weekend.

“Our goal is to maintain the same intensity and attitude while we keep working on certain aspects of our game, ” he said.

“To that end, we’ve worked hard in preparation knowing the challenge posed by a determined Reds team. ”

Foley says the new selections are a reflection of the depth within the Western Force squad.

“Francois and Zack have both worked hard on different aspects of their game over the last 12 months and their contributions against the Waratahs should provide them with confidence in their ability to put in a good performance on Saturday night, ” he said.

“Similarly, Chris and Mitch have challenged through pre-season to put themselves in line for selection, and Saturday represents an exciting opportunity for them. “

Western Force

1. Francois van Wyk* , 2. Nathan Charles , 3. Tetera Faulkner , 4. Sam Wykes (c) , 5. Adam Coleman , 6. Angus Cottrell , 7. Chris Alcock , 8. Ben McCalman , 9. Alby Mathewson , 10. Sias Ebersohn , 11. Marcel Brache , 12. Solomoni Jnr Rasolea , 13. Kyle Godwin , 14. Luke Morahan , 15. Zack Holmes

Replacements : 16. Heath Tessmann , 17. Chris Heiberg** , 18. Oliver Hoskins , 19. Steve Mafi , 20. Brynard Stander , 21. Ian Prior , 22. Luke Burton , 23. Mitchell Scott**

* denotes Western Force/Super Rugby starting debut ,
** denotes Western Force/Super Rugby debut

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