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Retallick returns for Chiefs against Blues

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The Chiefs have named their team to play the Blues at Waikato Stadium in Hamilton and have included All Black Brodie Retallick who returns from injury.

The Chiefs are already leading the Australasian Conference but have been boosted by the return of Retallick as well as Tawera Kerr-Barlow who also returns from injury.

The Chiefs are aiming for their sixth consecutive victory while the Blues will be looking for their first win over the Chiefs since 2011.

Imposing 2.06m lock Dominic Bird will don the Chiefs jersey for the first time, having recovered fully from a foot fracture he sustained in late 2015 following his move north to join the two-time Super Rugby champions from the Crusaders.

There are several other changes to the starting fifteen who defeated the Brumbies last Saturday in Canberra.

Atu Moli earns his first start at tighthead prop, Maama Vaipulu is promoted from the bench to start at blindside flanker along with impressive outside back Shaun Stevenson.

In the reserves, flanker Sam Henwood and winger Sam McNicol return to the 23 where they are joined by a powerful lineup of players ready to add impact off the bench.

Nepo Laulala, Mitchell Karpik, Andrew Horrell, Augustine Pulu, Tom Sanders, Toni Pulu, Johan Bardoul and Pauliasi Manu were all not considered for selection due to injury.

Chiefs

1. Mitchell Graham , 2. Hika Elliot, 3. Atu Moli , 4. Dominic Bird* 5. Brodie Retallick , 6. Maama Vaipulu , 7. Sam Cane (cc) 8. Michael Leitch , 9. Brad Weber, 10. Aaron Cruden (cc) 11. James Lowe , 12. Charlie Ngatai , 13. Anton Lienert-Brown , 14. Shaun Stevenson , 15. Damian McKenzie

Replacements : 16. Rhys Marshall, 17. Siate Tokolahi , 18. Siegfried Fisi’ihoi , 19. Taleni Seu, 20. Sam Henwood, 21. Tawera Kerr-Barlow , 22. Seta Tamanivalu , 23. Sam McNicol

*denotes Chiefs debut

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