Four rookies for Shield defence

Mon, 29 Jul 2013 09:29

Waikato named four uncapped players in the squad to take on the East Coast in Tuesday's Ranfurly Shield challenge.

Hooker Brayden Mitchell, prop Paul Alo-Emile and scrumhalf Kylem O'Donnell will all make their Waikato debuts, as will replacement scrumhalf Mick Snowden if he comes off the reserve bench at Whakarua Park in Ruatoria.

Other players returning to the squad for Waikato's second Shield challenge of the year are lock Sam Kilgour, No.8 Adam Burn and New Zealand Sevens representative Tim Mikkelson on the wing.

Also, on the bench prop Lionel Wairau and midfield back Watene Waenga both make their return to the Waikato team after several years absence.

Waikato has a quick turnaround before their first NPC pre-season fixture - against North Harbour at Beetham Park in Hamilton on Friday, August 2.

Their final pre-season hit out is against Taranaki on Thursday, August 8, at Island Reserve in Otorohanga.

Waikato: 15 Dylan Collier, 14 Tim Mikkelson, 13 Marnus Hanley, 12 Joe Perawiti, 11 Semisi Masirewa, 10 Trent Renata, 9 Kylem O'Donnell, 8 Adam Burn, 7 Jono Armstrong (captain), 6 Whetu Douglas, 5 Sam Kilgour, 4 Brian Alainu'uese, 3 Paul Alo-Emile, 2 Brayden Mitchell, 1 Latu Talakai.
Replacements: 16 Hame Faiva, 17 Lionel Wairau, 18 Chris Middleton, 19 Rory Grice, 20 Mick Snowden, 21 Watene Waenga, 22 Glen Robertson.

Date: Tuesday, July 30
Venue:  Whakarua Park, Ruatoria
Kick off: 14.30 (02.30 GMT)
Referee: TBC