Hamilton’s Chiefs have named lock Michael Allardice as Super rugby captain for this Saturday’s match against the Jaguares at José Amalfitani Stadium in Buenos Aires.
Allardice takes over the Chiefs Super rugby captaincy in the absence of his locking companion Brodie Retallick.
Allardice will captain the side in his 40th appearance for the Chiefs after inking a new deal to see him recommit with the franchise for 2020.
Following a 56-20 win over the Bulls in Pretoria last Sunday (NZ time) only four changes have been made to the starting fifteen.
All Blacks hooker Nathan Harris will celebrate his 50th game for the Chiefs. Harris will be joined by Aidan Ross and tighthead prop Nepo Laulala, who gets the nod ahead of Angus Ta’avao named in jersey 18. Allardice will combine with Mitchell Brown at lock in the only other change to the forward pack.
In the backline only two changes have been made. First five-eighth Marty McKenzie will start at ten with injury ruling Jack Debreczeni out of contention. Anton Lienert-Brown returns to start at second five eighth in his 60th appearance for the Chiefs moving Alex Nankivell to the bench.
Completing the changes to the twenty three, Taleni Seu earns his spot in jersey number 20 and is joined by Etene Nanai-Seturo who will don jersey number 23.
Head coach Colin Cooper said he will be wanting his team to continue to deliver another strong performance this weekend.
“This week we want to continue to carry the momentum and confidence we have into the Jaguares match. The Jaguares are a very passionate team and they have a strong set piece. We need to maintain a high tempo game and ensure our defence systems continue to improve, if we get that right then we should be in a good space.”
Cooper is confident Allardice will lead the team by example in Retallick’s absence.
“Michael is a good leader and provides plenty of experience to lead the team this week. He is well respected among the guys and we trust he will do a commendable job as Captain.”
Finally Cooper acknowledged Harris’ achievement and congratulated him on achieving the milestone.
“Nathan has been a strong performer for us and for him to notch up 50 caps in the Chiefs jersey is a notable achievement.”
1. Aidan Ross,2. Nathan Harris ,3. Nepo Laulala,4. Michael Allardice ©,5. Mitchell Brown,6. Luke Jacobson ,7. Lachlan Boshier,8. Tyler Ardron ,9. Brad Weber ,10. Marty McKenzie,11. Solomon Alaimalo ,12. Anton Lienert-Brown,13. Tumua Manu ,14. Sean Wainui,15. Damian McKenzie,
Replacements: 16. Samisoni Taukei’aho ,17. Tevita Mafileo ,Angus Ta’avao , 19. Jesse Parete,20. Taleni Seu, 21. Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi ,22. Alex Nankivell,23. Etene Nanai-Seturo