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The Force, in 10 years, have had a couple of decent seasons, but seventh remain their best finish.
The Rebels have had the occasional decent run, but last year’s 10th-place finish remain their nest performance.
And in recent years their encounters have been as exciting as watching paint dry.
They may have played out intriguing encounters, but they always tend to become ultra defensive when they go head-to-head – a classic case of the fear of failure getting the better of them.
And both teams are based in cities where Rugby League and Australian Rules Football are much bigger codes.
Force captain Matt Hodgson feels the West-Australian franchise will soon begin to reap the rewards of their local player development.
“It’s definitely tough,” Hodgson told PerthNow, when asked about their the desperation to become competitive in Super Rugby.
“Being those newer teams in the competition – and especially in markets like Melbourne and Perth where rugby isn’t the No.1 sport – it’s definitely hard to get that foothold.
“But I think after 10 years now we’re getting a lot of local talent come through, we’re getting our academy stuff right.
“A couple of years ago I would have been able to count maybe four or five West Australian boys in our whole squad, now I can’t even tell you because there’s that many.
“And also the boys who have flown over and been here for a couple of years really call Perth home now, so we’ve got that Perth culture really flowing through.
“So I think it’s only a matter of time before we make finals and hopefully win the title.”
Western Force: 15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Luke Morahan, 13 Ben Tapuai, 12 Kyle Godwin, 11 Marcel Brache, 10 Jono Lance, 9 Alby Mathewson, 8 Angus Cottrell, 7 Matt Hodgson, 6 Brynard Stander, 5 Adam Coleman, 4 Steve Mafi, 3 Guy Millar, 2 Nathan Charles, 1 Pekahou Cowan.
Replacements: 16 Heath Tessmann, 17 Chris Heiberg, 18 Jermaine Ainsley, 19 Ross Haylett-Petty, 20 Chris Alcock, 21 Ian Prior, 22 Peter Grant, 23 Semisi Masirewa.
Melbourne Rebels: 15 Mike Harris, 14 Dom Shipperley, 13 Tamati Ellison, 12 Mitch Inman, 11 Reece Hodge, 10 Jack Debreczeni, 9 Ben Meehan, 8 Adam Thomson, 7 Sean McMahon (captain), 6 Jordy Reid, 5 Lopeti Timani, 4 Luke Jones, 3 Laurie Weeks, 2 James Hanson, 1 Toby Smith.
Replacements: 16 Pat Leafa, 17 Cruze Ah Nau, 18 Jamie Hagan, 19 Steve Cummins, 20 Colby Fainga’a, 21 Mick Snowden, 22 Jonah Placid, 23 Tom English.