Etienne Oosthuizen will make his Brumbies Rugby debut on Saturday night when he starts at lock against the Bulls at Canberra Stadium.
The hulking South African native, who has revealed his intentions to one day represent the Wallabies, was recruited from the Lions in Johannesburg at the end of the 2012 Super Rugby season. He made three appearances for the Lions top squad as well as a season with the club’s Currie Cup team.
Oosthuizen is one of four personnel changes to the University of Canberra Brumbies starting side, with Ben Alexander returning to tight head prop for Scott Sio, Scott Fardy at lock for Sam Carter and Nic White to scrumhalf for Ian Prior.
An addition to those players inclusion in the starting side, Peter Kimlin moves back to blindside flanker, Captain Ben Mowen to No. 8 and Fotu Auelua to the bench.
Prior and Sio will fill spots on the bench while Sam Carter has been left out of the game day 22.
On the bench Andrew Smith also makes his first appearance since the last time the Brumbies played at Canberra Stadium against the Waratahs in round four. Dynamo fullback Jesse Mogg will be given an extra week to recover from a shoulder bang he suffered playing against the Sharks in Durban.
Head Coach Jake White said the team had recovered well after the trip back from Africa and was now ready to take on the Bulls at home.
“It’s fantastic to be handing Etienne his first Brumbies jersey, I’m sure there will be many more to follow throughout his career,” White said.
“He has trained hard and made plenty of progress since arriving from the Lions and I’m excited for him to be starting this new chapter in his life and his career.
“Nic [White] will give us another kicking option this weekend, while Benny A was good in the scrum once he came on against the Stormers. Jesse [Mogg] wasn’t quite where we need him to be for this weekend, so we’ve decided against rushing him back.
“The Bulls have publicly said that they’d consider two wins on tour as a success and they have only secured one at this stage. With that said, there’s no doubt they will throw everything at us to head back top Pretoria on a high.”
The corresponding fixture in 2012 was a cliff hanger, with the University of Canberra Brumbies outscoring the Bulls five tries to two but still losing the match, 34-36. Morne Steyn booted seven penalties that evening.
University of Canberra Brumbies
1. Ben Alexander
2. Stephen Moore
3. Dan Palmer
4. Scott Fardy
5. Etienne Oosthuizen
6. Peter Kimlin
7. George Smith
8. Ben Mowen (c)
9. Nic White
10. Matt Toomua
11. Joe Tomane
12. Christian Lealiifano
13. Tevita Kuridrani
14. Henry Speight
15. Robbie Coleman
16. Siliva Siliva
17. Scott Sio
18. Fotu Auelua
19. Colby Faingaa
20. Ian Prior
21. Andrew Smith
22. Clyde Rathbone