FUKUOKA – Hanco Germishuys will start at flank in place of suspended John Quill for the United States as one of five changes to their side for the Rugby World Cup Pool C clash against France at the Fukuoka Hakatonomori Stadium on Wednesday.
Quill was red-carded in the 45-7 loss to England and subsequently suspended for the final three pool games. South African-born Germishuys was drafted into the number seven jersey in a back-row that also includes Tony Lamborn and Cam Dolan.
Prop Eric Fry comes in for the injured David Ainuum, who has been ruled out for the remainder of the tournament with an ankle injury, while lock Nate Brakeley was preferred to Ben Landry. Fry is based in France with second-tier Vannes.
The U.S. also lost centre Paul Lasike and full-back Will Hooley to injury following their England mauling, and they have been replaced by Bryce Campbell and Mike Teo respectively.
Campbell - against England in 2011 - and Timi Lamositele - versus Scotland in 2015 - are the only players in the match-day 23 to have scored tries against a Tier 1 nation in World Cups.
But France will be wary of prolific wing Joe Taufetee, who has scored 20 tries in 24 appearances for the Eagles, including 18 in 17 starts. Only wing Vaea Antoni (26 tries) has scored more for the U.S. in international rugby.
The experienced AJ MacGinty will marshall the backline from the fly-half position and needs nine more points to move up to second on the all-time test list for the U.S. ahead of Matt Alexander, who managed 286 points between 1995 and 1998.
"With the short turnaround, it's all about maintaining and getting the guys recovered, because there's a big beast lying ahead of us and that's France," U.S. defence coach Jaque Fourie told reporters.
"We need to be mentally and physically ready for that challenge. I don't think we can get any worse than we were on Thursday, so we can just get better.
"The wonderful thing about rugby is that we've got another chance. For us now as a team, we will get together. We took it on the chin – everyone, me – I put my hand up. But as a team we need to get much better on the field.
"We've got brilliant structures in place. But like I say, we can have structures but if we can't make our first-up tackles and if we can't get around the corner and get into shape then it's not going to help."