Super Rugby Women’s Week Five teams: Force set for club history, Wallaroos return for Brumbies, Reds last-ditch dash for finals


The final round of the regular season of Super Rugby Women’s is set to deliver a lot of surprises. The Reds will look to attempt a last-gasp haymaker for finals when they face the Waratahs, the Drua will look to sure up second place when they head to face the Rebels, while the Brumbies and Force look to try and steal the runner up position in Canberra.

See all the team news below.


NSW Waratahs v Queensland Reds, 5:05 pm AEST

First match in the doubleheader with the men’s game against the Crusaders, the Waratahs have taken an unassailable lead in the competition and will finish as minor premiers, however, given how finals have played out the last two years they will likely be wary of this Reds side, and desperate to maintain momentum going into finals.

Georgina Friedrichs will captain the side with Piper Duck out due to injury, while Jade Sheridan comes onto the bench.

The Reds are still an outside chance of making finals if they can manage a bonus point victory over the Tahs. If that wasn’t enough, they will likely be hoping that the Western Force can knock off the Brumbies and deny them a losing bonus point, with the Brumbies having a more favourable for-and-against record for Queensland to chase down.

Doreen Narokete will be back for the visitors in the loose forwards, while captain Cecilia Smith returns to inside centre and speedster Dianne Waight coming onto the wing. However, Shalom Sauaso will be unavailable for the game, a major loss given her two tries against the Rebels.

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WARATAHS (1-15): Brianna Hoy, Brittany Merlo, Bridie O’Gorman, Kaitlan Leaney, Annabelle Codey, Atasi Lafai, Skye Churchill, Leilani Nathan, Layne Morgan, Arabella McKenzie, Desiree Miller, Katrina Barker, Georgina Friedrichs (c), Maya Stewart, Caitlyn Halse

RESERVES: Siusiuosalafai Volkman, Emily Robinson, Eva Karpani, Sera Naiqama, Ruby Anderson, Tatum Bird, Waiaria Ellis, Jade Sheridan

REDS (1-15): Madi Schuck, Tiarna Molloy, Charli Jacoby, Ashlee Knight, Lucy Thorpe, Grace Baker, Carola Kreis, Jemma Bemrose, Nat Wright, Carys Dallinger, Ivania Wong, Cecilia Smith (c), Mel Wilks, Dianne Waight, Lori Cramer

RESERVES: Isabelle Robinson, Liz Patu, Janita Kareta, Doreen Narokete, Sarah Dougherty, Mercedez Taulelei-Siala, Alana Elisaia, April Ngatupuna 

The NSW Waratahs celebrate after scoring a try during the Super W match between NSW Waratahs Women and Fijian Drua. (Photo by Tim Allsop/Getty Images)


ACT Brumbies v Western Force, 2:35 pm AEST

The battle for the other finals placings continues at Viking Park in Canberra, as the two chasers in the Brumbies and Force meet for a match that will decide where they finish on the ladder. While both sides are likely locked in for finals, the Reds’ mathematical chance to steal fourth will not be lost on either side. Simply, win here.

The Force are set to make club history this weekend. Currently sitting in third, the Force, once confirmed, will mark the first time the women from the West have ever made a finals campaign, as well as the first time since the 2021 Super Rugby AU season that either the men’s or women’s side has made finals.

The visitors will welcome back Kalamunda hooker Hera-Barb Malcolm Heke, Japan international prop Natsuki Kashiwagi and Rosie Ebbage into the set piece, while Nicole Ledington, Saelua Leaula and local talent Brooklyn Teki-Joyce enter the starting sides at flyhalf and on both wings, respectively.

The Brumbies will see four players making their way back into the starting side, being Chioma Enyi on the wing, Sally Fuesaina, Wallaroo Kayla Sauvao and skipper Siokapesi Palu. Madeleine Gogala is set to make her debut off the bench for the hosts.

BRUMBIES (1-15): Sally Fuesaina, Tania Naden, Iroha Kisimoto, Kate Holland, Ash Fernandez, Siokapesi Palu (c), Lydia Kavoa, Tabua Tuinakauvadra, Kolora Lomani, Faitala Moleka, Chioma Enyi, Kayla Sauvao, Harmony Ioane, Biola Dawa, Ashlea Bishop

RESERVES: Erika Maslen, Allana Sikimeti, Iris Verebalavu, Madeleine Gogala, Loretta Mailangi, Bonnie Brewer, Kyah Little, Martha Fua 

FORCE (1-15): Hinata Komaki, Hera-Barb Malcolm Heke, Natsuki Kashiwagi, Michaela Leonard (c), Rosie Ebbage, Lucy Dinnen, Anneka Stephens, Tamika Jones, Samantha Wood, Nicole Ledington, Saelua Leaula, Siutiti Ma’ake, Sheree Hume, Brooklyn Teki-Joyce, Renae Nona

RESERVES: Sara Cline, Harono Te Iringa, Alapeta Ngauamo, Libya Teepa, Keira MacAskill, Kendra Fell, Dallys Tini, Haylee Hifo

Melbourne Rebels v Fijiana Drua, 5:05 pm AEST

Finally, the Rebels will kick off their doubleheader with their final clash of the season against the Drua. While the wooden spoon is guaranteed, the growth of the side – reflected in improved performances against the Waratahs and two-point margin losses to the Reds and Brumbies, suggest they are far from a side to be taken lightly.

Sydney Niupulusu will start in the engine room for the Rebels, with Lucy Brown moving to scrumhalf, alongside Cassie Siataga at flyhalf – completing a relatively unchanged lineup for the hosts.

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The Drua meanwhile will lock to lock down second place on the ladder, as a loss here could see them be caught by a fast-finishing Brumbies or Force side.

They will debut several new faces, however have maintained an experienced tight five. Repeka Tove will make her debut on the wing for the visitors, with a new halves combination in Evivi Senikarivi and Salanieta Kinita.

REBELS (1-15): Ana Mamea, Jayme Nuku, Jiowana Sauto, Sydney Niupulusu, Tiarah Minns, Melanie Kawa, Sui Pauaraisa, Grace Hamilton, Lucy Brown, Cassie Siataga, Teuila Pritchard, Crystal Mayes, Ashley Marsters, Chanelle Kohika-Skipper, Samantha Treherne

RESERVES: Mary Tuaana, Laiema Bosenavulagi, Paula Ioane, Easter Savelio, Laetitia Bobo, Millicent Scutt, Grace Freeman, Mia-Rae Clifford

DRUA (1-15): Salanieta Nabuli, Keleni Marawa, Vika Matarugu, Asinate Serevi, Jade Coates, Nunia Daunimoala, Sulita Waisega, Karalaini Naisewa (c), Evivi Senikarivi, Salanieta Kinita, Adita Milinia, Merewai Cumu, Vani Arei, Repeka Tove, Atelaite Buna

RESERVES: Litia Marama, Anasimeci Korovata, Tiana Robanakadavu, Mereoni Nakesa, Teresia Tinanivalu, Setaita Railumu, Merewalesi Rokouono, Luisa Tisolo

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