USA National Rugby Team


US Names Lineup for Romania Match

(Killiney, Ireland) 7 October 1999 -- The United States aims to win its first Rugby World Cup match in 12 years on Saturday, taking on Romania in Dublin, and today named its starting lineup for the Lansdowne Road contest.

The Eagles make four changes to the lineup following an opening-round loss against Ireland, head coach Jack Clark announced today.

Rob Lumkong starts at number eight, recovered from knee troubles that kept him from the Ireland match. The veteran of 26 caps missed most of the Pacific Rim campaign, but played in Great Britain in August.

Also in the backrow, Fifita Mo'unga comes in at openside flanker and captain Dan Lyle shifts to the blindside.

The tight five is unchanged, with props George Sucher and Ray Lehner flanking hooker Tom Billups, and Luke Gross and Alec Parker paired at lock.

In the backline, David Niu moves from the reserves bench to the starting lineup at flyhalf, as does inside center Mark Scharrenberg.

The rest of the backline is unchanged: Kevin Dalzell is the halfback, Juan Grobler starts at outside center, Brian Hightower and Vaea Anitoni are the wings, and Kurt Shuman is the fullback.

The reserves are backs Tom Takau and Dave Stroble, and forwards Richard Tardits, Shaun Paga, Dave Hodges, Kirk Khasigian, and Joe Clayton. All but Clayton and Stroble, who is uncapped, appeared in the Ireland contest.

The USA defeated Japan 21-18 in the inaugural World Cup in 1987, and went winless in the 1991 tournament. Romania, favored after a strong performance in a Sunday loss to Australia, downed Zimbabwe in 1987 and Fiji in 1991, but went winless in the 1995 World Cup. The US did not qualify for that event.

United States: Kurt Shuman; Vaea Anitoni, Juan Grobler, Mark Scharrenberg, Brian Hightower; David Niu, Kevin Dalzell; George Sucher, Tom Billups, Ray Lehner, Luke Gross, Alec Parker, Dan Lyle (captain), Fifita Mo'unga, Rob Lumkong. Reserves: Tom Takau, Dave Stroble, Richard Tardits, Shaun Paga, Dave Hodges, Joe Clayton, Kirk Khasigian.

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Scott Compton
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