Brumbies unchanged for Stormers qualifier

The Brumbies have named an unchanged team for their Super Rugby qualifier against the Stormers at Newlands in Cape Town on Saturday.

Head coach Stephen Larkham has retained the team even though they were beaten by the Crusaders in last week’s outing.

This means that David Pocock has been named at flanker despite leaving the field with concussion concerns in the 37-24 loss to the Crusaders at GIO Stadium.

“He’s on track to play,” Head Coach Stephen Larkham said.

“But every day he’s got to tick a box, so he could fall back a day and miss the game.”

The match against the Stormers would be Pocock’s first ever Super Rugby finals appearance. In 2013 in his first season with the Brumbies, Pocock missed the side’s run to the final following a season-ending knee injury.

Also under an injury cloud for the Brumbies is Matt Toomua who has been named as a reserve. Last week the 24-year-old played 28 minutes from the bench in just his second game in eight matches following two separate ankle injuries.

“Coming back from a syndesmosis … everything is cleared medically, it’s just whether he feels good, which I suspect he will, ” Larkham said.

Les Makin and Nigel Ah Wong have been named on an extended bench after travelling to South Africa with the squad.

The Brumbies are preparing for another physical game against the Stormers, to whom they lost 25-24 at Newlands in May.

“It was test match intensity and that’s what’s required to beat the Stormers, ” Larkham said.

“They’ve got a very big forward pack so the biggest lesson for us is understanding that physicality will be a massive part of this game. “

The Brumbies say that they are not concerned that they haven’t won in Cape Town since 2010, and will be out to replicate their South African finals success of 2013. In that match the Brumbies downed heavy favourites the Bulls 26-23 with a try in the final minute sealing the win.

The Brumbies have won two-out-of-two in the Super Rugby Qualifiers and this is the third year in a row they have played in this stage.

Brumbies

1. Scott Sio , 2. Stephen Moore (c) , 3. Ben Alexander , 4. Rory Arnold , 5. Blake Enever , 6. Scott Fardy , 7. David Pocock , 8. Ita Vaea , 9. Nic White , 10. Christian Lealiifano , 11. Joe Tomane , 12. Robbie Coleman , 13. Tevita Kuridrani , 14. Henry Speight , 15. Jesse Mogg

Replacements : 16. Josh Mann-Rea , 17. Allan Alaalatoa , 18. Ruan Smith , 19. Jordan Smiler , 20. Jarrad Butler , 21. Michael Dowsett , 22. Matt Toomua , 23. James Dargaville , 24. Les Makin , 25. Nigel Ah Wong

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