Fijian Drua have retained 13 players from the starting line-up that beat the Rebels for this week’s Super Rugby Pacific clash against the Reds, among them Meli Derenalagi returning as captain, six players who have consistently been on the run-on team since round one and three others plus Frank Lomani likely to make their Super debut.
The changes to the run-on team by Swire Shipping Fijian Drua coach Mick Byrne are in the hooker and fly-half positions with Mesulame Dolokoto and Teti Tela getting their first start in SRP – the latter getting the nod after his 14-point haul in their 31-26 defeat of the Rebels last week.
The six making their fourth consecutive start this week include last week’s Man of the Match Apisalome Vota, Kalaveti Ravouvou, Vinaya Habosi, Baden Kerr, and in the forwards, are Samuela Tawake, and Isoa Nasilasila.
Making their way in the 23-match day squad for the first time are Counties Manukau hooker Zuriel Togiatama (16), Fijian Latui skipper and Suva lock Sorovakatini Tuifagalele and Flying Fijians scrumhalf Frank Lomani.
Coach Byrne said: “We are looking forward to a great challenge against last year’s Australian champions the Reds. We have had a good week preparing ourselves for what we expect to be another physical game.”
The Drua take on the Reds this Saturday (12 March) at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane. The match kicks off at 6.45pm (local time).