Rebels’ Ellison to win 100th Super Rugby cap

Rebels head coach Tony McGahan has named an unchanged starting line up for this week’s Super Rugby match against the Brumbies with Tamati Ellison making his 100th Super Rugby appearance.

McGahan has has kept the line up from when the Rebels faced the Reds which was before their bye last weekend.

Ellison will win his 100th Super Rugby cap after moving to Melbourne in 2014 and will continue the midfield partnership he has forged with Mitch Inman, while there is also a potential Super Rugby debut for reserve prop Tim Metcher and a return to Canberra for former Brumby Colby Fainga’a.

McGahan said it was difficult picking his team this week after the Rebels had a bye in Round Nine.

“We have close to a full list available for selection, and it’s been a competitive time on the training field since we resumed following a short break, ” he said. “We’re starting to develop some genuine depth here, and it’s not an easy team to break into.

“Those who weren’t selected will have the opportunity to play in the Dewar Shield and continue to stake their claims for inclusion moving forward. ”

McGahan paid tribute to Ellison, whose impact since his move to Melbourne has been profound.

“With such a young squad, it’s fantastic to have somebody of Tamati’s demeanour in the group, ” McGahan said.

“He is one of the most professional players I have been involved with.

“He has a calming influence, and is able to draw upon past experiences to help us improve as individuals, staff and as a squad. Tamati’s achievement this weekend is well appreciated by all within the Rebels squad, and of course in New Zealand, where he made most of his appearances. ”

Rebels

1. Toby Smith ,2. Pat Leafa ,3. Paul Alo-Emile ,4. Luke Jones,5. Lopeti Timani ,6. Sean McMahon ,7. Scott Fuglistaller,8. Scott Higginbotham ,9. Nic Stirzaker ,10. Jack Debreczeni ,11. Sefanaia Naivalu ,12. Mitch Inman,13. Tamati Ellison ,14. Tom English ,15. Mike Harris

Replacements::16. Tom Sexton ,17. Cruze Ah-Nau ,18. Tim Metcher *,19. Cadeyrn Neville ,20. Colby Fainga’a ,21. Jordy Reid ,22. Luke Burgess ,23. Bryce Hegarty

* Denotes potential Rebels debut

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