Super Rugby

Cooper rings the changes for Chiefs against Crusaders

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Chiefs Super rugby head coach Colin Cooper has named a team with several changes for this Saturday’s match against the current unbeaten champion Crusaders.

All Blacks Nathan Harris and Nepo Laulala will re-join to start in the front row alongside Aidan Ross.


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The return of Harris and Laulala means Samisoni Taukei’aho and Angus Ta’avao move to the bench.

A new locking combination of Captain Brodie Retallick and Tyler Ardron will take the field with Michael Allardice being ruled out after sustaining an injury in training.

Lachlan Boshier gets the nod as the starting number seven ahead of Mitchell Karpik who has been named in the reserves.

In the backs second five-eighth Anton Lienert-Brown returns refreshed following his week off to combine in the midfield with centre Tumua Manu shifting Alex Nankivell to the bench.

Fullback Solomon Alaimalo returns from injury to earn his first start of the season.

First five-eighth Jack Debreczeni will be hoping to impress if given the opportunity to debut off the bench.

Cooper states, “For us this week, we have gone back to basics and have focused on what we can control as a team.”

“We welcome the return of a couple of our team who have been out with injury or on leave. These guys are ready to go and eager to play and bring great energy into the team which we will need to combat an impressive Crusaders team,” said Cooper.

Chiefs

15 Solomon Alaimalo, 14 Sean Wainui, 13 Tumua Manu, 12 Anton Lienert-Brown, 11 Etene Nanai-Seturo, 10 Damian McKenzie, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Taleni Seu, 7 Lachlan Boshier, 6 Mitchell Brown, 5 Tyler Ardron, 4 Brodie Retallick (c), 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Nathan Harris, 1 Aidan Ross

Replacements: 16 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 17 Tevita Mafileo, 18 Angus Ta’avao, 19 Jesse Parete, 20 Mitchell Karpik, 21 Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, 22 Jack Debreczeni, 23 Alex Nankivell

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