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With 24 players named to the squad, it's time to speculate who might play where when the Eagles take the field against Canada at Ellerslie Park in Edmonton Saturday.
The game could be bumped up to a full test match by the IRB, and it's the first match in the resurrected Pacific Nations Cup, so both teams will be looking to field the strongest teams they can.
The Eagles are without Chris Wyles, Samu Manoa, Scott LaValla and Takudzwa Ngwenya, and Canada is without Jamie Cudmore, DTH Van der Merwe, Jebb Sinclair, Conor Trainor and James Pritchard.
Mike Tolkin is yet to have beaten Canada, and will look to name an experienced side against them Saturday. While Mike MacDonald is certainly experienced, he is not 100-percent healthy, so look for Shawn Pittman and Eric Fry to start at prop.
Neither of the hooker options named to the team are that experienced, but Zach Fenoglio has certainly had more time playing in the USA's system than Tom Coolican. Coolican played with Toby L'Estrange in Australia and is now his teammate at NYAC. Don't be surprised if he gets his chance somewhere down the line.
The only other really questionable position is fullback. Blaine Scully has more experience in a USA uniform than Adam Siddall, but without Siddall or Wyles, the Eagles have no clear-cut goal kicker. So Tolkin could go for the boot and pick the Old Blue flyhalf to play 15, or he could give the kicking duties to Andrew Suniula.
|Projected Starting Lineup|