USA go for gold with just three changes for match against Tonga

After disappointing capitulation against Argentina, the Eagles want to go out on a high and avoid Pool C wooden spoon.

TOKYO, 11 Oct - USA coach Gary Gold has made just three changes to his starting XV for the Pool C match against Tonga in Hanazono on Sunday, despite the four-day turnaround from the 47-17 defeat the Argentina.

"For us, not winning a game here at the World Cup, we'll see as a huge negative," said Will Hooley, who comes in at full-back after making an impact off the bench against Argentina, his first appearance since suffering a concussion in the USA's opening game.

"We've got to dust ourselves down, recognise where we went wrong and be better for Sunday.

"We deserve to have a big performance hopefully with that we can get a result."

Nick Civetta returns to start in the second row, while Malon Al-Jiboori will get his first taste of tournament action at openside flanker.

Scrum-half Ruben de Haas, above, keeps his place after a good performance on his 21st birthday.

If hooker James Hilterbrand appears as a replacement, he will be the 31st and final member of the USA squad to get game time at RWC 2019.

USA

1. Eric Fry
2. Joe Taufete’e
3. Titi Lamositele
4. Greg Peterson
5. Nick Civetta
6. Tony Lamborn
7. Malon Al-Jiboori
8. Cam Dolan
9. Ruben de Haas
10. AJ MacGinty
11. Marcel Brache
12. Paul Lasike
13. Bryce Campbell
14. Blaine Scully (capt.)
15. Will Hooley

16. James Hilterbrand
17. Olive Kilifi
18. Paul Mullen
19. Ben Landry
20. Hanco Germishuys
21. Ben Pinkelman
22. Nate Augspurger
23. Mike Te’o

RNS lm