Hodgson returns to lead Force

Force captain Matt Hodgson will make his first appearance of the season against the Chiefs in Hamilton on Friday.

Hodgson has yet to appear for the Force in 2015 after suffering a hamstring injury during a pre-season fixture against the Asia Pacific Dragons.

He will start at openside flank, with Ben McCalman and Angus Cottrell rounding out the back row. A foot injury to interim captain Sam Wykes sees Steve Mafi shift from the side of the scrum into the second row.

In the only other change to the starting XV, Ian Prior will start his first match of 2015, replacing scrumhalf Alby Mathewson, who has been sidelined with a knee injury.

Meanwhile, the Force bench will be bolstered by the return of Kane Koteka from concussion along with South African-born lock Wilhelm Steenkamp.

Force – 15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Luke Morahan, 13 Kyle Godwin, 12 Luke Burton, 11 Nick Cummins, 10 Sias Ebersohn, 9 Ian Prior, 8 Ben McCalman, 7 Matt Hodgson (c), 6 Angus Cottrell, 5 Adam Coleman, 4 Steve Mafi, 3 Tetera Faulkner, 2 Nathan Charles, 1 Pekahou Cowan.
Subs: 16 Heath Tessmann, 17 Chris Heiberg, 18 Oliver Hoskins, 19 Wilhelm Steenkamp, 20 Kane Koteka, 21 Ryan Louwrens, 22 Junior Rasolea, 23 Marcel Brache.

Super Rugby teams (Round 11)

Photo: Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images