Super Rugby


Bond University Queensland Country side named for first ever clash against Fijian Drua

Bond University Queensland Country head coach Brad Thorn has named his match-day 23 for the team’s first ever National Rugby Championship clash against the Fijian Drua at Lautoka’s Churchill Park this Saturday, 21 October. 

Four changes have been made to the starting XV from the side that ran out against the Greater Sydney Rams last weekend. 

In the forwards, Toowoomba product Phil Potgieter will earn his first start of 2017, coming into the second-row for Angus Blyth. 

In the backs, with Duncan Paia’aia and Izaia Perese unavailable due to Wallabies commitments, Teti Tela will move to flyhalf with Hamish Stewart starting at inside centre, and Patrick James will return to the starting side at fullback. Eto Nabuli will also return to the line-up on the wing. 

In the absence of regular captain Paia’aua, flanker Liam Wright will captain Country for the first time. 

In the reserves, Bond University’s Tai Ford and Easts’ Kirwan Sanday return to the squad, while Queensland U20s centre Tony Hunt is in line for his possible Queensland Country and NRC debut. 

Head coach Brad Thorn said: “This match against the Drua will be significant for our side. 

“Only four points separate us on the ladder and they’ve been at the top of the table all season. We’ve seen that they feed off their home crowd in Fiji and they will be the biggest challenge our team has faced this season. 

“We’ve had to make a number of changes to our side this week with players unavailable, but we’re confident in the ability of each player who comes into the team and the systems we have in place. 

“Liam (Wright) will take over captaincy for this match, but he been has been part of the team’s leadership group all season and also captained our Queensland U20s earlier this year so he has plenty of leadership experience.  

“We have a number of Fijians in our side as well so this match will be particularly special for them as they have the opportunity to play in front of family and friends in Lautoka.” 

Queensland Country currently sit in second place in the NRC ladder with two rounds remaining in the competition. The 2017 season is already their most successful in the history of the competition, having won five of their six matches so far.

In the spirit of the occasion, the Country side will also be traveling with Rugby kit to donate to the Fijian locals. 

The clash between Queensland Country and the Fijian Drua kicks off at 12:00pm AEST on Saturday, and will be broadcast LIVE on Fox Sports. 

Bond University Queensland Country side to face Fijian Drua: 
1. Sef Fa’agase - University of Queensland/Beaudesert 
2. Alex Casey - Souths 
3. Taniela Tupou - Brothers
4. Phil Potgieter - University of Queensland/Toowoomba
5. Harry Hockings - University of Queensland/Bowen
6. Angus Scott-Young - University of Queensland
7. Liam Wright - Easts (c) 
8. Caleb Timu - Souths
9. James Tuttle - GPS
10. Teti Tela - Souths
11. Eto Nabuli - GPS
12. Hamish Stewart - Bond University/Toowoomba
13. Chris Feauai-Sautia - Souths
14. Filipo Daugunu - Wests 
15. Patrick James - Brothers
16. Richie Asiata - Easts 
17. James Slipper - Bond University/Gold Coast
18. Kirwan Sanday – Easts 
19. Ted Postal - Brothers/Townsville
20. Tai Ford - Bond University/Gold Coast
21. Tate McDermott - University of Queensland/Sunshine Coast
22. Tony Hunt - University of Queensland (Potential Queensland Country & NRC debut) 
23. Jock Campbell - University of Queensland/Gold Coast 

Fiji Airways Drua v Bond University Queensland Country
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Rugby Traveller