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Melbourne Rebels

  • Johansson, Cipriani, Mitchell,
    Penalty goals: Gerrard, Huxley (2),
    Conversions: Cipriani (3),
30 - 29

Western Force

  • Pocock, Cummins, Mafi, Stanley,
    Penalty goals: Harvey,
    Conversions: Harvey (3),

Rebels v Western Force: Teams

At AAMI Park, Friday March 23, kick-off 8.40am

Last updated: 22nd March 2012   Subscribe to RSS Feed

nick cummins

Nick Cummins: Back on the wing for the Force

gareth delve melbourne rebels 2011

Gareth Delve: Insists the Rebels can bounce back

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Stand-in Rebels skipper Gareth Delve insists his side won't suffer any hangover from their agonising late defeat to the Cheetahs when they tackle the Western Force.

The Rebels had thought they were on course for a share of the spoils after an enthralling encounter on Sunday - only for Piet van Zyl to score deep into injury time to seal a 33-26 win over the Cheetahs.

Delve, though, claims the Rebels have regrouped well and are determined to get their first win of the season against the Force on Friday.

"I think there's a danger of carrying last-minute defeats into the next game - maybe we carried a little bit of the Reds game with us this week, losing a tight one," Delve, who is skippering the Rebels in the absence of Stirling Mortlock, told the club's official site.

"But that can't happen this week - we've got to show a turnaround.

"We'll get ourselves fresh, get our heads up, and push for that first win of the season, because we're good enough - now we've got to go out there and prove it".

The Rebels have made a number of changes for the match - with coach Damien Hill rejigging his back division.

Nick Phipps and Danny Cipriani both return to the starting XV, so Richard Kingi moves to full-back - the fourth player to occupy the No.15 shirt this season - while James O'Connor returns to inside centre.

Recovered

Lachlan Mitchell and Mark Gerrard also switch positions - with the latter returning to the wing after starting in the centres against the Cheetahs.

The only change in the pack sees Jarrod Saffy come in on the blindside - with Michael Lipman having recovered from a back injury to take his place on the bench.

Nick Cummins and Toby Lynn will return to the Force squad for the clash at AAMI Park.

Cummins comes in on the wing, with experienced lock having to settle for a spot on the bench.

There is an additional change to the starting XV, with Kieran Longbottom starting in the front row and Pek Cowan dropping to the bench.

Rebels: 15 Richard Kingi, 14 Mark Gerrard, 13 Lachlan Mitchell, 12 James O'Connor, 11 Cooper Vuna, 10 Danny Cipriani, 9 Nick Phipps, 1 Nic Henderson, 2 Adam Freier, 3 Laurie Weeks, 4 Luke Jones, 5 Hugh Pyle (vc), 6 Jarrod Saffy, 7 Tom Chamberlain, 8 Gareth Delve (c).
Replacements: 16 Ged Robinson, 17 Rodney Blake, 18 Alister Campbell, 19 Tim Davidson, 20 Michael Lipman, 21 Lloyd Johansson, 22 Julian Huxley.

Western Force: 15 David Harvey, 14 Nick Cummins, 13 Will Tupou, 12 Rory Sidey, 11 Alfie Mafi, 10 James Stannard, 9 Brett Sheehan, 8 Matt Hodgson, 7 David Pocock (c), 6 Angus Cottrell, 5 Nathan Sharpe, 4 Sam Wykes, 3 Salesi Ma'afu, 2 Nathan Charles, 1 Kieran Longbottom.
Replacements: 16 Ben Whittaker, 17 Pek Cowan, 18 Toby Lynn, 19 Richard Brown, 20 Justin Turner, 21 Winston Stanley, 22 Samu Wara.

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Phil Edwards

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