Reds change one for Sharks

Date published: May 20 2015

Reds head coach Richard Graham has made one change to his matchday squad to take on the Sharks in Brisbane on Friday.

In the most consistent week-to-week line-up this season, the only change to last week’s side sees wing Lachie Turner replaced by Chris Kuridrani due to concussion.

Graham said he was pleased to be able to name a fairly consistent line-up and he hoped the team would build on last week’s performance.

“It is nice to be able to reward the group for their performance last week and for the first time this season we have only lost one player to injury. That in itself is also a bonus as continuity of selection for the right reasons breeds confidence,” he told the Reds' official website.

“We had a few first-timers last week and they were all strong contributors. Jake (McIntyre) will have gained confidence from his ability to steer the team around, Karmichael (Hunt) will become more familiar in the front line and Sam Greene’s nerves will have settled with 10 minutes off the bench at the back end of the game.

“We need to prepare for this game with the same mental approach as we did the Rebels. We were urgent, abrasive and full of running. Anything short of that will negate the efforts of last week.

“Every week there are challenges in Super Rugby. This week the Sharks will be desperate to finish their tour with a win. They have copped a fair bit of criticism recently and we know all too well how that stings. There is a lot of quality in their squad and they will want to return to South Africa with some wind in their sails for the remaining few games.

“Over the past few seasons it has been the Sharks’ set piece that has given them some ascendancy. The forwards understand fully that it is their responsibility to dominate that area of the game. That will go a long way towards determining the outcome Friday night.”

Graham also said fly-half Quade Cooper was not considered for selection, after it was determined he would benefit from another week of rest before returning from a fractured shoulder blade.

“Quade (Cooper) was pretty close to being available. His fracture has healed and he is training fully with the team, however we felt it was in his best interests to have another week of strength and contact work."

Reds: 15 James O’Connor, 14 Chris Feauai-Sautia, 13 Karmichael Hunt, 12 Samu Kerevi, 11 Chris Kuridrani, 10 Jake McIntyre, 9 Will Genia, 8 Jake Schatz, 7 Liam Gill, 6 Adam Thomson, 5 James Horwill, 4 Rob Simmons, 3 Greg Holmes, 2 James Hanson, 1 James Slipper (c)
Replacements: 16 Andrew Ready, 17 Pettowa Paraka, 18 Sam Talakai, 19 Ed O’Donoghue, 20 Lolo Fakaosilea, 21 Nick Frisby, 22 Sam Greene, 23 Ben Tapuai

Date: Friday, May 22
Venue: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Kick-off: 19:40 local (21:40 NZST, 11:40 SAST, 09:40 GMT)
Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia)
Assistant Referees: Matt O'Brien (Australia), Damien Mitchelmore (Australia)
TMO: Peter Marshall (Australia)