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Robinson starts for Reds

27th March 2014 04:00

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Action man: Beau Robinson

Beau Robinson will make his first start of 2014 in one of three changes by head coach Richard Graham for the Reds to face the Stormers.

Robinson, James Hanson and Dom Shipperley have been brought into the starting lineup for the match this Saturday, as the Reds look to return to winning ways at Suncorp Stadium in Round Seven of Super Rugby.

All three players were on the reserves bench last weekend when the Reds met the Lions, with Robinson being promoted to replace the injured Liam Gill, Hanson coming into the starting side for Saia Fainga'a and Shipperley for the injured Aidan Toua. Shipperley will play on the wing, with Lachie Turner shifting to fullback.

The changes to the starting lineup have also necessitated some shifts to the reserves bench, with Curtis Browning in the back row and Ben Lucas being brought back into the match-day 23 as cover for the back three.

The match also sees the potential for two milestone achievements from the bench, with Saia Fainga'a chasing his 100th Super Rugby cap and Ed O'Donoghue his 50th Queensland cap.

"It is a fantastic milestone for Saia (Fainga'a). 100 Super Rugby caps is a very notable achievement," added Graham.

"With his caps split over time with the Brumbies and Reds, I think Saia would relish the opportunity potentially next year to also notch 100 games for Queensland. He has played the majority of his professional career here and is an extremely proud Queenslander.

"Donk (Ed O'Donoghue) is in his second stint after some time in Europe. He is a great team man and the boys will celebrate his 50th cap for the Reds. It is a good example to the younger players of perseverance and commitment to achieving your goals."

Graham said the team needed little motivation to leave Suncorp with a win on Saturday night.

"We've had a difficult start to the season and the team is looking forward to returning to our fortress on Saturday night," stated Graham.

"Our trip to South Africa was tough. We didn't get the results we wanted and suffered four injuries, but we've returned home with a desire to get our season heading in the right direction.

"With the next three games at home, we're going to enjoy the opportunity to play in front of our own supporters."

Graham also addressed the team's recent run of penalties.

"Four of the Australian franchises (Waratahs, Brumbies, Force, Reds) sit atop the Super Rugby penalty count," explained Graham.

"It gives a strong indication of the mentality the Australian teams are taking particularly at the defensive breakdown.

"Whilst we have conceded penalties in this area, we have also forced the most turnovers, averaging eight per game, and also forced opposition teams to play with the second slowest breakdown ball. We continue to work on the skill and the decision making but it is risk verse reward.

"Our attacking breakdown had come under scrutiny, but you need to look in greater depth to understand the penalty count. If anything, we were probably guilty of being a little ambitious at times in counter attack or the wider channels.

"We have put a fair bit of time into our attacking framework and we only conceded one penalty in attack on the weekend. That is a great result and supports the work we have done.

"We have gained a reputation on the back of the two games in South Africa. We need to continue improving to ensure perception isn't reality. I have said a number of times this week that we need to control the outcome of games.

"We're comfortable with the review process done by SANZAR. Lyndon Bray is guaranteeing the process is reflective of a high-performance organisation. We will continue to work with the referees to ensure our game constantly improves."

The Reds and Stormers have met 17 times in Super Rugby, with seven wins for Queensland. The Reds' record against the Stormers in Brisbane reads five wins from nine matches. Their most recent match against the Stormers was a 20-15 loss in Cape Town in 2013.

Reds: 15 Lachie Turner, 14 Rod Davies, 13 Ben Tapuai, 12 Mike Harris, 11 Dom Shipperley, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Will Genia, 8 Jake Schatz, 7 Beau Robinson, 6 Ed Quirk, 5 James Horwill (c), 4 Rob Simmons, 3 Greg Holmes, 2 James Hanson, 1 James Slipper
Replacements: 16 Saia Fainga'a, 17 Albert Anae, 18 Jono Owen, 19 Ed O'Donoghue, 20 Curtis Browning, 21 Nick Frisby, 22 Anthony Fainga'a, 23 Ben Lucas

Date: Saturday 29 March
Venue: Suncorp Stadium
Kick-off: 18:40 (local, 08:40 GMT)
Referee: Chris Pollock (NZ)
Assistant Referees: Steve Walsh, Robin Hoffman (both Aus)
TMO: Steve Leszczynski (Aus)

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Australian Conference
Super Rugby Table
PosTeamPPts
1Waratahs1658
2Brumbies1645
3Western Force1640
4Reds1628
5Melbourne Rebels1621