Retallick boost for Chiefs
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: All Black lock Brodie Retallick will for the Chiefs in their crunch New Zealand derby match against the Highlanders in Dunedin on Saturday.
The outcome of this highly anticipated fixture will determine the New Zealand Conference seeding ahead of the 2016 Super Rugby quarterfinal play-offs, with the top ranked kiwi team securing the coveted home advantage.
In the forwards, Kane Hames, Nathan Harris and Atu Moli will start alongside each other for the second consecutive week. The industrious locking partnership of Dominic Bird and Retallick is re-established following a well-earned rest week for the latter. Tom Sanders, co-captain Sam Cane and veteran Liam Messam link up to form an impressive loose-forward combination.
In the backs, the starting lin-eup who ravaged the Reds 50-5 in Brisbane last Friday have earned their jerseys again this week.
All Blacks Tawera Kerr-Barlow and co-captain Aaron Cruden will start at scrumhalf and flyhalf respectively. Explosive midfielders Anton Lienert-Brown and Seta Tamanivalu combine again, with James Lowe, Toni Pulu and Damian McKenzie forming a formidable back three.
Chiefs: 15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Toni Pulu, 13 Seta Tamanivalu, 12 Anton Lienert-Brown, 11 James Lowe, 10 Aaron Cruden (co-captain), 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 8 Liam Messam, 7 Sam Cane (co-captain), 6 Tom Sanders, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Dominic Bird, 3 Atu Moli, 2 Nathan Harris, 1 Kane Hames.
Replacements: 16 Hika Elliot, 17 Siegfried Fisi'ihoi, 18 Hiroshi Yamashita, 19 Taleni Seu, 20 Lachlan Boshier, 21 Brad Weber, 22 Stephen Donald, 23 Sam McNicol.
Date: Saturday, July 16
Venue: Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin
Kick-off: 19.35 (07.35 GMT)
Referee: Glen Jackson (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Nick Briant (New Zealand), Jamie Nutbrown (New Zealand)
TMO: Chris Wratt (New Zealand)