Arrows Lineup Set Ahead of First Clash with Hounds
March 10, 2023 – Major League Rugby (MLR) – Toronto Arrows News Release
BRIDGEVIEW, IL – Toronto Arrows Head Coach Peter Smith has named his starting lineup for Saturday’s away match against the Chicago Hounds.
Fresh off the early-season bye week, the Arrows’ starting forwards will feature new additions across the front row, with Lolani Faleiva, Ramon Ayarza, and Tyler Rowland all drawing in. Lock Adrian Wadden has also been tabbed to make his first start of the 2023 campaign.
The backline will receive a boost via the injection of fly-half Sam Malcolm and centre Noel Reid, with the duo activated off the injured reserve ahead of Saturday’s affair. Reid, along with Ayarza, is set to make his first start for the club.
Mitch Richardson retains his starting role, though will shift to the wing as part of the reinforced backs unit. Avery Oitomen has also been drafted into the starting lineup; the winger, now in his second stint with his hometown club after a three-year spell abroad focusing on his post-secondary studies, will make his first start for the Arrows since April 21, 2019 – a date remembered as the team’s first home victory in its expansion season.
Will Grant and Owain Ruttan have been named to the bench, with the scrum-half and flanker in line to make their first appearances for the team.
The Week 4 clash at SeatGeek Stadium will mark the inaugural fixture between the two sides. The Hounds (0-2; 1 point), fifth in the Western Conference, have opened their first season in MLR with a 42-27 defeat at DC before dropping a narrow 14-10 result to Utah in their home opener last Sunday.
Saturday’s game will kick off at 8 p.m. ET. The cross-conference tilt will stream on TSN+, TSN.ca, the TSN app, and The Rugby Network for Canadian audiences, will be broadcast nationally on FS2 for American audiences, and will be available on The Rugby Network for international audiences. Additional broadcast details.
Toronto Arrows Lineup vs. Chicago Hounds:
1. Lolani Faleiva
2. Ramon Ayarza
3. Tyler Rowland
4. Mason Flesch
5. Adrian Wadden
6. Travis Larsen
7. Lucas Rumball (C)
8. Mitch Eadie
9. Ross Braude
10. Sam Malcolm (VC)
11. Mitch Richardson
12. Noel Reid
13. Tautalatasi Tasi
14. Avery Oitomen
15. Ciaran Breen
16. Gene Syminton
17. Nik Hildebrand
18. Conan O’Donnell
19. Mike Sheppard (VC)
20. Owain Ruttan
23. James O’Neill
22. Will Grant
21. Kobe Faust
Injury / Recovery List: Nic Benn, Cole Davis, Shane O’Leary, Isaac Salmon, Corey Thomas, Micaiah Torrance-Read
Noel Reid will make his Arrows debut as a starter
Ramon Ayarza will make his first start for the club
Will Grant and Owain Ruttan stand to make their Arrows debuts off the bench
Five squad members are full Canadian internationals: Ross Braude (12 caps), Mason Flesch (2 caps), Tyler Rowland (9 caps), Lucas Rumball (47 caps), Mike Sheppard (11 caps)
Ramon Ayarza (12 caps) is a full Chilean international
Week 3 Milestone Watch:
49 – Mike Sheppard is in contention to make his 49th appearance for the club, which would see him hold the second-highest all-time cap tally on the team, trailing only Paul Ciulini (50)
100 – Mason Flesch is five tackles away (95) from reaching 100 in his MLR career
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