Chiefs bring their All Blacks back to face Brumbies

The Chiefs have named their team to the play the Brumbies in the second round of the Super Rugby season at Taranaki with four All Blacks returning to the fold.

The Chiefs and the Brumbies both won their opening fixtures as the Chiefs beat the Blues and the top the standings after their impressive opening round win over the Reds.

Liam Messam has been named as captain of the Chiefs team that features one former and three current All Blacks

Messam will lead the team at blindside while Aaron Cruden starts at first five-eighth with Super Rugby centurion Hosea Gear making his Chiefs debut on the left wing.

In addition World Rugby Player of the Year Brodie Retallick will start on the bench.

Other changes to the starting fifteen see Prop Jamie Mackintosh line up alongside Hika Elliot and Siate Tokolahi in the front row, while in the backs, Tom Marshall and Tim Nanai-Williams are unavailable due to injury, so with Gear starting on the left wing, James Lowe moves to fullback with Bryce Heem retained on the right wing.

In the reserves, a Chiefs debut is in the offing for hooker Quentin MacDonald, who returns to Super Rugby after a season away, and ITM Cup Player of the Year Seta Tamanivalu is set to make his Chiefs and Super Rugby debut in front of his home crowd.

They are joined on the bench by props Pauliasi Manu, Ben Tameifuna and last week’s stand out performer Damian McKenzie.

“There is a huge amount of competition for places and we are excited to have our returning All Blacks back in the mix,” said Chiefs coach Dave Rennie.

“Between our team and the Brumbies there are plenty of world class players on display and with the styles both teams like to play it will be a real positive game.”

Chiefs

1. Jamie Mackintosh , 2. Hika Elliot , 3. Siate Tokolahi , 4. Matt Symons , 5. Michael Fitzgerald , 6. Liam Messam (c) , 7. Sam Cane , 8. Maama Vaipulu , 9. Brad Weber , 10. Aaron Cruden , 11. Hosea Gear* , 12. Sonny Bill Williams , 13. Charlie Ngatai , 14. Bryce Heem , 15. James Lowe

Replacements : 16. Quentin MacDonald* , 17. Pauliasi Manu , 18. Ben Tameifuna , 19. Brodie Retallick , 20. Tevita Koloamatangi , 21. Augustine Pulu , 22. Damian McKenzie , 23. Seta Tamanivalu**

*Chiefs debutants
**Super Rugby Debut

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