Chiefs change one, Blues four

Bundee Aki has replaced Charlie Ngatai in the Chiefs' midfield for their must-win match against the Blues in Auckland.

Ngatai is out with a shoulder injury. Newly crowned Chiefs Rookie of the Year Nathan Harris comes onto the bench, and is joined by Dwayne Sweeney who missed last week's match against the Hurricanes.

Meanwhile, Blues duo Tony Woodcock and Luke Braid have been ruled out of the match because of shoulder injuries. Sam Prattley replaces Woodcock at loosehead prop while Brendon O'Connor comes in for Braid.

In other changes, Charles Piutau returns to fullback, with Tevita Li coming onto the left wing in place of George Moala, while Lolagi Visinia is hoping to overcome a haematoma to his quad and is currently bracketed with Moala.

Francis Saili comes in at outside centre for Pita Ahki who has joined the New Zealand Sevens team ahead of the Commonwealth Games.

Blues – 15 Charles Piutau, 14 Lolagi Visinia/George Moala, 13 Francis Saili, 12 Ma'a Nonu, 11 Tevita Li, 10 Ihaia West, 9 Bryn Hall, 8 Jerome Kaino, 7 Brendon O'Connor, 6 Steven Luatua, 5 Tom Donnelly, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu, 3 Charlie Faumuina, 2 Keven Mealamu (c), 1 Sam Pratley.
Subs: 16 James Parsons, 17 Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 18 Angus Ta'avao, 19 Hayden Triggs, 20 Peter Saili, 21 Jamison Gibson-Park, 22 Jackson Willison, 23 George Moala/Albert Nikoro.

Chiefs – 15 Tom Marshall, 14 Asaeli Tikoirotuma, 13 Tim Nanai-Williams, 12 Bundee Aki, 11 James Lowe, 10 Aaron Cruden, 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 8 Liam Squire, 7 Tanerau Latimer, 6 Liam Messam, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Mike Fitzgerald, 3 Ben Tameifuna, 2 Mahonri Schwalger, 1 Jamie Mackintosh.
Subs: 16 Nathan Harris, 17 Pauliasi Manu, 18 Nick Barrett, 19 Matt Symons, 20 Tevita Koloamatangi, 21 Augustine Pulu, 22 Gareth Anscombe, 23 Dwayne Sweeney.

Photo: Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images

Post by

Simon Borchardt