The Melbourne Rebels welcome back captain Nic Stirzaker and Scott Fuglistaller for Saturday’s historic game against the Sunwolves in Tokyo.
The pair have been named as reserves in the 23-player team with Stirzaker returning from a shoulder reconstruction and Fugistaller overcoming a hip injury to be selected for the first time this season.
Rebels Head Coach Tony McGahan has made two changes to the run-on team with Tamati Ellison clear of concussion after missing the team’s two-point victory over the Reds last weekend and Pat Leafa starting at hooker.
“It’s been great to have Nic and Scott back, they bring a wealth of experience and leadership to the team," said McGahan.
The Rebels will become the first Australasian team to contest Super Rugby against the Sunwolves in Tokyo.
Jamie Hagan has overcome his virus to return to the bench, after missing last weekend, and Sione Tuipulotu has retained his spot in the team after his impressive Super Rugby debut against the Reds.
Melbourne Rebels: 15 Jonah Placid, 14 Dom Shipperley, 13 Tamati Ellison, 12 Mitch Inman, 11 Tom English, 10 Jack Debreczeni, 9 Ben Meehan, 8 Adam Thomson, 7 Sean McMahon (c), 6 Jordy Reid, 5 Lopeti Timani, 4 Luke Jones, 3 Laurie Weeks, 2 Pat Leafa, 1 Toby Smith
Replacements: 16 James Hanson, 17 Cruze Ah Nau, 18 Jamie Hagan, 19 Sam Jeffries, 20 Scott Fuglistaller, 21 Nic Stirzaker, 22 Dan Hawkins, 23 Sione Tuipulotu
Date: Saturday, March 19
Venue: Chichibu Memorial Stadium, Tokyo
Kick-off: 13:15 local (04:15 GMT)
Referee: Mike Fraser
Assistant Referees: Shuhei Kubo, Noriaki Hashimoto
TMO: Takashi Hareda