Messam ineligible for play-offs

Sun, 17 Jul 2016 13:18
Large liam messam v reds 800

NEWS: SANZAAR have ruled Chiefs flank Liam Messam ineligible for the Super Rugby play-offs.

Messam rejoined the Chiefs this month after missing out on selection for the New Zealand Olympic Sevens squad. 

However, because he was not part of the original squad of 40, to be eligible for finals matches he had to be in the country from April 1, which he was, but also play four regular season matches. Messam  played only two matches, against the Reds and Highlanders.

According to reports the Chiefs are understood to be furious at the ruling.

Messam was named in Davie Rennie's 25-man squad for the trip to Cape Town to face the Stormers in the quarterfinals.

"There's been a lot of deliberation over this," SANZAAR Media and Communications Manager Greg Thomas said.

"Special dispensation hasn't been granted because SANZAAR are satisfied that the Chiefs can field a normal, full-strength side of 23 players for the following match.

"There are a suitable number of back-row players in the squad that will allow them to have a matchday 23."

Tevita Koloamatangi takes Messam's place in the travelling squad.

Meanwhile, Seta Tamanivalu is unavailable for the Stormers match after sustaining an MCL injury in their Round 17 clash against the Highlanders. 

Chiefs squad - revised:

Forwards: Kane Hames, Mitchell Graham, Atu Moli, Siegfried Fisi’ihoi, Siate Tokolahi, Hika Elliot, Nathan Harris, Dominic Bird, Brodie Retallick, Lachlan Boshier, Tom Sanders, Sam Cane, Taleni Seu, Tevita Koloamatangi.

Backs: Tawera Kerr-Barlow, Brad Weber, Aaron Cruden, James Lowe, Damian McKenzie, Anton Lienert-Brown, Stephen Donald, Sam McNicol, Sam Vaka, Toni Pulu, Shaun Stevenson.


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