BRISBANE - Centre Anthony Faingaa will captain a 28-strong Queensland Reds squad boasting 11 Wallabies in their opening Super Rugby trial against the Blues at Toowoomba on Saturday night.
Faingaa beat a host of contenders vying for the captaincy reins with Wallabies skipper James Horwill (hamstring) still regaining fitness and halfback Will Genia (knee) sidelined.
Faingaa will chime into a near full strength backline featuring playmaker Quade Cooper — six days before he makes his professional boxing debut.
Cooper will combine with Ben Lucas in the halves, Faingaa and Ben Tapuai are in the centres, Luke Morahan and Digby Ioane on the wings and Mike Harris at fullback.
Reds director of coaching Ewen McKenzie said he searching for balance in his side.
"There is always a delicate balance in choosing a trial team and it's important we get our selections right," McKenzie said.