Mad Mitch snaps at last

Force coach John Mitchell finally lost his cool when he let rip at his winless squad during a training session.

Mitchell slammed his troops for a lack of concentration and then yelled at prop Dave Fitter and flyhalf Brock James who have both been dropped from the squad to face the Crusaders.

“I get fired up occasionally with the group, and occasionally I get a bit annoyed if there is a lack of concentration, and there was a lack of concentration by a couple of non-playing members today,” Mitchell told the Sydney Morning Herald. “So it is my right to ask them the hard questions.”

Mitchell said Fitter, who’d arrived in Perth with a reputation as big as his frame, had been disappointing, as had James.

“Dave is an excellent scrummager but we are demanding more from him around the field, in attack and defence, and we are not getting that at the moment,” Mitchell said.

“Brock’s form has been a little bit indifferent in terms of controlling the game, so it is important we get started with Scotty Daruda.”

Meanwhile, injury has again take its toll on the Force with hooker Brendan Cannon sidelined by a niggling nerve-related injury to his left shoulder, while flyhalf James Hilgendorf is unavailable having suffered a double fracture to his left eye socket after being hit by Blues centre Rua Tipoki.

Coming in for Cannon is versatile front-rower Tai McIsaac, while former Australian U19 captain Scott Daruda will replace Hilgendorf.

In other changes, Pat O’Connor will partner Sharpe in the second row for his third Super 14 appearance; Haig Sare returns to the wing, with Gavin DeBartolo out of contention due to a sprained ankle; and Angus Scott replaces David Fitter at tighthead prop.

Force team to play Crusaders:

15 Cameron Shepherd, 14 Haig Sare, 13 Josh Graham, 12 Scott Staniforth, 11 Digby Ioane, 10 Scott Daruda, 9 Matt Henjak; 8 Scott Fava, 7 Matt Hodgson, 6 David Pusey, 5 Nathan Sharpe (c), 4 Pat O’Connor, 3 Angus Scott, 2 Tai McIsaac, 1 Gareth Hardy.
Subs: 16 Luke Holmes, 17 David Te Moana, 18 Luke Doherty, 19 Tim Davidson, 20 Chris O’Young, 21 Brock James, 22 Tajhon Mailata.