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Weber to lead Chiefs against Lions

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Hamilton Super rugby team the Chiefs have named halfback Brad Weber to lead the side for this weekend’s match against the Lions at FMG Stadium Waikato on Good Friday.

Weber assumes the captaincy in the absence of co-captains Brodie Retallick and Sam Cane.

Weber will captain the side in his 65th appearance for the Chiefs. Weber has previously captained both Hawke’s Bay and Waikato during his time with the respective provinces.

Excited for the opportunity, Weber said: “It is a huge honour to be named as captain for this Friday. I am excited for the opportunity and am thankful to have a great bunch of guys around me which will make my job easier.

Following a 33-29 win over the Blues in Hamilton last Saturday a number of changes have been made to the twenty three.

Bay of Plenty hooker Liam Polwart will make his first appearance of the 2019 Investec Super Rugby season starting in replace of All Blacks hooker Nathan Harris. Polwart will combine with Angus Ta’avao and Nepo Laulala. Loosehead prop Atu Moli returns from his elbow injury and is joined by Samisoni Taukei’aho and Sosefo Kautai who will provide front row cover.

A new locking combination of Tyler Ardron and Mitchell Brown will take the field after Retallick was ruled out with a hand injury.

Alex Nankivell will start at centre shifting Tumua Manu to the bench named in jersey number 22. Ataata Moeakiola will start on the left wing in place of injured winger Solomon Alaimalo, with Shaun Stevenson moving onto the bench named in jersey 23.

Jack Debreczeni will start at fullback in place of Damian McKenzie who sustained a season-ending knee injury on Saturday evening. Halfback Jonathan Taumateine is given an opportunity to impress coaches off the bench in jersey 21.

Chiefs

15 Jack Debreczeni, 14 Sean Wainui, 13 Alex Nankivell, 12 Anton Lienert-Brown, 11 Ataata Moeakiola, 10 Marty McKenzie, 9 Brad Weber (captain), 8 Taleni Seu, 7 Lachlan Boshier, 6 Luke Jacobson, 5 Mitchell Brown, 4 Tyler Ardron, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Liam Polwart, 1 Angus Ta’avao

Replacements: 16 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 17 Atu Moli, 18 Sosefo Kautai, 19 Jesse Parete, 20 Pita Gus Sowakula, 21 Jonathan Taumateine, 22 Tumua Manu, 23 Shaun Stevenson

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