Nonu returns for Hurricanes against Bulls

The Hurricanes have named a largely unchanged team to play the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday but will All Black Ma’a Nonu making first start for the side in four years.

All Black Rugby world cup winner Nonu returns to the Hurricanes starting line-up in what will be his 145th Super Rugby appearance, and first for the Wellington side since 2011.

Nonu’s return means that Rey Lee-Lo drops out of the team completely.

In the front row at loosehead Reggie Goodes replaces Ben Franks who moves over to tighthead with Jeffery Toomaga-Allen dropping to the replacements bench.

Callum Gibbins starts ahead of Ardie Savea who will come off the replacements bench

The match will also be a significant occasion for Manawatu flanker Callum Gibbins, who is set to get his first start for the Hurricanes.

Head-to-head, this will be the 19th time the Hurricanes and the Bulls have met on the Super Rugby field, both winning nine matches each.

Hurricanes

1. Reggie Goodes, 2. Dane Coles, 3. Ben Franks, 4. Mark Abbott, 5. James Broadhurst, 6. Brad Shields, 7. Callum Gibbins, 8. Blade Thomson, 9. TJ Perenara, 10. Beauden Barrett, 11. Julian Savea, 12. Ma’a Nonu, 13. Conrad Smith, 14. Cory Jane, 15. Jason Woodward

Replacements : 16. Brayden Mitchell, 17. Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, 18. Chris Eves, 19. Ardie Savea, 20. Victor Vito, 21. Chris Smylie, 22. James Marshall, 23. Matt Proctor

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