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Chiefs shuffle for Sunwolves Super rugby clash

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Hamilton’s Super rugby team the Chiefs have made a number of changes for this weekend’s match at FMG Stadium Waikato against the Sunwolves.

The Chiefs have yet to win in 2019 and face the Sunwolves who are also searching for their first win of the season.


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The Chiefs Chiefs will welcome the return of winger Sean Wainui and midfield cover Alex Nankivell, who will make their first appearance of the 2019 Super Rugby competition.

Hooker Samisoni Taukei’aho will have his first start in the Chiefs jersey in a new front row combination of Aidan Ross, Taukei’aho and Angus Ta’avao.

Legendary lock Brodie Retallick and Michael Allardice will complete the tight five.

Loose forward Mitchell Brown will don jersey number six and Mitchell Karpik earns his first start at seven for the season with Lachlan Boshier named in the reserves.

Taleni Seu moves into the starting fifteen after Tyler Ardron was ruled out with concussion. Taranaki’s Jesse Parete will provide cover on the bench.

Brad Weber returns to start at half back, with Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi moving to the bench. Unchanged at ten, Damian McKenzie will steer the backline for the Chiefs.

Impressive midfielder Orbyn Leger will start at his preferred second five eighth position combining with centre Tumua Manu in the midfield. The back three will remain unchanged with the exception of returning winger Wainui who has been named on the right wing ahead of Ataata Moeakiola who has been named in jersey number 23.

In the reserves, Taranaki hooker Bradley Slater who will be looking to make his Super Rugby debut off the bench. Slater will be joined by Tasman midfielder Nankivell who will don jersey number 22. Propping duo Tevita Mafielo and Sosefo Kautai maintain their position in the 23 as cover.

Assistant Coach Tabai Matson said this weekend will be no light task for the Chiefs.

“This weekend we need to pull together what we have been working on at training and transfer that into the game. The Sunwolves are a good side and we are not taking them lightly. They were close to a win last week and will be hurting just as we are. We just need to do the basics right and the rest will fall into place,” said Matson.

Matson finished acknowledging the team want to provide Brodie Retallick with a more fitting celebration for his achievement.

“Last week we didn’t deliver for Brodie. As a team we want to be able to put in a performance we are proud of and provide Brodie with a fitting acknowledgement for this significant milestone in front of a home crowd.”

Chiefs

15 Shaun Stevenson, 14 Sean Wainui, 13 Tumua Manu, 12 Orbyn Leger, 11 Etene Nanai-Seturo, 10 Damian McKenzie, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Taleni Seu, 7 Mitchell Karpik, 6 Mitchell Brown, 5 Michael Allardice, 4 Brodie Retallick (captain), 3 Angus Ta’avao, 2 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 1 Aidan Ross

Replacements : 16 Bradley Slater, 17 Tevita Mafileo, 18 Sefo Kautai, 19 Jesse Parete, 20 Lachlan Boshier, 21 Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, 22 Alex Nankivell, 23 Ataata Moeakiola

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