Last-ditch gamble | New backline formation unleashed in must-win clash

Fijian Drua perform the war dance (cibi) before their match against Moana Pasifika. Picture: BALJEET SINGH

Swire Shipping Fijian Drua head coach Mick Byrne has made a few positional changes to his starting line-up that will face the Reds tomorrow in their last regular season match of the 2023 Shop N Save Super Rugby Pacific season.

Outgoing inside centre Kalaveti Ravouvou moves to left wing while Teti Tela starts at inside centre and Selestino Ravutaumada shifting to fullback.

Byrne has maintained his front row from last week with Haereiti Hetet at loosehead prop, Mesake Doge at tighthead, and Tevita Ikanivere as hooker.

The second row will consist of Isoa Nasilasila and Leone Rotuisolia. Colomiers bound Joseva Tamani remains at blindside flanker with Vilive Miramira on the openside.

Captain Meli Derenalagi runs out at number eight completing the forward pack. Frank Lomani remains at halfback with Caleb Muntz slotting in at flyhalf this week.

Eroni Sau shifts to the right wing while try-scoring machine Iosefo Masi maintains his spot at outside centre.

Providing impact off the bench, Mesulame Dolokoto, Meli Tuni and Samuela Tawake provide cover for the front row while Etonia Waqa and Elia Canakaivata will add firepower to the back row in the second half.

Peni Matawalu and Kemueli Valetini cover for the playmaking roles while Michael Naitokani completes the matchday-23 as the outside back cover.

The Drua and Reds have played each other twice and both matches were decided by a margin of five points or less. Reds have won both previous encounters.

The match starts at 4.35pm at the HFC Bank Stadium in Suva.

More Stories