Muliaina returns to Chiefs line up for Crusaders

The Chiefs have named their team to play the Crusaders AMI Stadium in Christchurch on Friday with Mils Muliaina returning to the starting line up for the first time since 2011.

The match will be the first game on New Zealand soil for All Blacks centurion Mils Muliaina since the 2011 Rugby World Cup. It will also be the first match in Chiefs colours for prop Jamie Mackintosh and centre Robbie Fruean.

Chiefs Coach Dave Rennie said, “We have a lot of respect for the Crusaders and are excited by this match up. “

“The boys have been training since November and we have been planning since August, so we are really looking forward to the competition starting properly.”

The match is a great opportunity for some of the young players in the squad who have shown great potential in the last few weeks to make their Super Rugby debut.

This includes flanker Tevita Kolomatangi who starts in the number seven jersey and Nathan Harris, James Lowe and Matt Symons/Liam Squire and Anton Lienert-Brown if confirmed to play, who get their chance to make their debuts off the bench.

Chiefs

1. Jamie Mackintosh,2. Rhys Marshall,3. Ben Tameifuna,4. Michael Fitzgerald,5. Brodie Retallick,6. Liam Messam ,7. Tevita Koloamatangi,8. Kane Thompson,9. Augustine Pulu,10. Aaron Cruden (c),11. Asaeli Tikoirotuma,12. Charlie Ngatai,13. Robbie Fruean,14. Tim Nanai-Williams,15. Mils Muliaina,

Replacements :16. Nathan Harris,17. Pauliasi Manu,18. Ben Afeaki,19. Matt Symons/Liam Squire,20. Nick Crosswell,21. Tawera Kerr-Barlow,22. Andrew Horrell/Anton Lienert-Brown,23. James Lowe

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