The USA and Romania have named their squads to face each other Saturday at Arcul de Triumf stadium in Bucharest.
USA Head Coach Mike Tolkin has made several changes from the team that lost to Tonga last Saturday. Brian Doyle is out through injury, and as a result Scott LaValla moves from flanker to lock, John Quill slides over from openside to blindside, and Peter Dahl comes in for the start at openside flanker.
At scrumhalf, Mike Petri gets the start over Robbie Shaw, while in the deep three, Luke Hume moves form right wing to left, with Takudzwa Ngwenya starting at right wing. Cornelius Dirksen, who started the last two matches, is not in the 22. Chris Wyles returns to the starting lineup after a personal commitment kept him out of last week's game. Zach Pangelinan provides cover on the bench.
The rest of the bench is unchanged except for Shaw taking Petri's place on the bench to cover at scrumhalf, and Graham Harriman makes the 22 for the first time, providing cover at lock forward.
"We are anxious to conclude European tour here. So far we have done well, but it will be a big challenge to play against Romania," said Tolkin in a press conference Thursday. "Romania has a tradition of rugby and we are aware that we face a team that focuses on strength."
Romanian Head Coach Hari Dumitras said he expects an exciting game, and added that he considers the USA team friends as well as adversaries.
"After all, rugby is just an excuse to create new friends."
Dumitras said the game will be a difficult one, and will require a high work rate from his squad.
This will be the first time the USA and Romania have played since 2005, when the USA came away with a 28-22 victory.
"Our teams do not meet very often in the field, and Saturday's game is an opportunity to take advantage," said USA captain Todd Clever. "The last time I played against Romania was in 2005 in Japan and I think it is great that we meet again. "
Romania vs. United States
National Stadium Arc de Triumf. 4pm local time, 9am ET, 6am PT. Saturday, November 24.
Referee: Leighton Hodges (Wales), Andrew McMenemy (Scotland), Ian Davies (Wales).
Romania: 1. Petru Tamba, 2. Otar Turashvili, 3. Mihaita Lazar, 4. Cosmin Ratiu, 5. Alin Coste, 6. Vasile Rus, 7. Mihai Macovei (C), 8. Ovidiu Tonita, 9. Florin Surugiu, 10. Andrei Filip, 11. Ionut Botezatu, 12. Csaba Gal, 13. Ionel Cazan, 14. Madalin Lemnaru, 15. Catalin Fercu.
Reserves: 16. Andrei Radoi, 17. Horatiu Pungea, 18. Vlad Badalicescu, 19. Alexandru Manta, 20. Viorel Lucaci, 21. Grigoras Diaconescu, 22. Ionut Florea, 23. Constantin Gheara.
USA: 1. Shawn Pittman, 2. Chris Biller, 3. Eric Fry, 4. Scott Lavalla, 5. Louis Stanfill, 6. John Quill, 7. Peter Dahl, 8. Todd Clever (C), 9. Mike Petri, 10. Toby L’Estrange, 11. Luke Hume, 12. Andrew Suniula, 13. Paul Emerick, 14. Takudzwa Ngwenya, 15. Chris Wyles.
Reserves: 16. Derek Asbun, 17. Nick Wallace, 18. Zachary Fenoglio, 19. Graham Harriman, 20. Inaki Basauri, 21. Robbie Shaw, 22. Roland Suniula, 23. Zachary Pangelinan.