Highlanders v Reds Super Rugby Preview

Beau Robinson will play in England for Harlequins

The Highlanders and the Reds will kick off Round 3 of the 2015 Super Rugby season in Dunedin where the Highlanders will be looking to end a losing streak.

The Reds and the Highlanders have played each other 19 times since 1996 and the Highlanders have won 9 matches and lost 9 matches. There have been no draws.

That gives the Highlanders a record of winning 50% of their matches at all venues against the Reds. The average score when the Highlanders play the Reds is Highlanders 29 Reds 24.

This weekend the Highlanders will have home advantage as the match will be played in Dunedin where the teams have met six times. Overall the Highlanders have had home advantage over the Reds 7 times.

Two of the Highlanders 8 home matches were played at Invercargill and both of those matches were won by the Highlanders.

In Dunedin the Highlanders have played the Reds six times and won five times. That gives the Highlanders a record of winning 83% of their home matches against the Reds.

The average score when the Highlanders play the Reds in Dunedin is : Highlanders 40 Reds 21.

The last time the Highlanders played the Reds in Dunedin was in 2013 and the Reds won the match by one point at 33-34 and this was their only victory in the city.

The last four matches between the teams have all been won by the Reds. The Highlanders have not finished as winners against the Reds since 2009.

In terms of selections the Reds have named former Highlander Adam Thomson in their starting line up along with James O’Connor who will be making his Reds debut.

Anthony Fainga’a returns from a serious cork suffered in the Reds’ pre-season match against the Crusaders at Ballymore three weeks ago.

Fainga’a joins Samu Kerevi in the centres, shifting Chris Feauai-Sautia to the wing, with 18-year-old Campbell Magnay moving to the reserves, after making his starting debut last weekend.

The Highlanders have named former Hurricane Marty Banks at No.10 as Lima Sopoaga is left off the team sheet.

Former Hurricanes prop Brendon Edmonds will make his debut for the Highlanders with Josh Hohneck moving to the bench while Liam Coltman and Joe Wheeler make way for Ash Dixon and Mark Reddish in the starting XV.

The Reds have played two matches so far this season and they have won one and lost one. They were not good at all in their season opener but bounced back last week and beat the Force.

The Highlanders have only played one match this season and they lost 20-26 to the Crusaders. Its worth noting that the Highlanders were still in the match in the final quarter of the contest last week against a team that had already played a match.

The Bookies have given the Reds a 7 point start for this Match – with an offer of a FREE $150 BET. We think the Highlanders will just edge this match. James O’Connor is a very talented player but this is his debut for the Reds. The Highlanders should edge this by 2 points.

This Match will be shown on TV in NZ, Aus, SA and in the UK on Sky Sports 1/HD.

Average score: Highlanders 29 Reds 24

Last five results
30 May 2014 Highlanders v Reds 31-38 Brisbane
29 Mar 2013 Highlanders v Reds 33-34 Dunedin
06 Jul 2012 Highlanders v Reds 13-19 Brisbane
15 May 2010 Highlanders v Reds 36-38 Brisbane
11 Apr 2009 Highlanders v Reds 24-19 Ivercargill

Highlanders overall record against the Reds
Played 18 , Wins 9 , Losses 9 , Draws 0

Match No 15.:Highlanders v Reds
Date : Friday 27 February 2015
Venue : Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin
Kick Off : 19:35 local, 17:35 AEDT, 08:35 SAST
Referee: Glen Jackson
Assistant Ref 1:Kane McBride
Assistant Ref 2:Paul Williams
TMO : Vinny Munro

Teams

Highlanders

1. Brendon Edmonds , 2. Ash Dixon , 3. Ross Geldenhuys , 4. Tom Franklin , 5. Mark Reddish , 6. Elliot Dixon , 7. John Hardie , 8. Nasi Manu (co-Captain) , 9. Aaron Smith , 10. Marty Banks , 11. Patrick Osborne , 12. Jason Emery , 13. Malakai Fekitoa , 14. Waisake Naholo , 15. Ben Smith (co-Captain)

Replacements : 16. Liam Coltman , 17. Josh Hohneck , 18. Ma’afu Fia , 19. Joe Wheeler , 20. Dan Pryor , 21. Fumiaki Tanaka , 22. Hayden Parker , 23. Kurt Baker

Queensland Reds

1. James Slipper (C) , 2. Saia Fainga’a , 3. Sam Talakai , 4. Dave McDuling (Starting debut) , 5. Marco Kotze , 6. Adam Thomson , 7. Liam Gill , 8. Jake Schatz , 9. Will Genia , 10. James O’Connor (Reds debut) , 11. Chris Feauai-Sautia , 12. Anthony Fainga’a , 13. Samu Kerevi , 14. Chris Kuridrani , 15. Lachie Turner

Replacements : 16. James Hanson , 17. Ben Daley , 18. Sef Faagase , 19. Tom Murday , 20. Curtis Browning , 21. Nick Frisby , 22. Sam Johnson , 23. Campbell Magnay

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