Highlanders make three changes

Date published: May 14 2015

Highlanders boss Jamie Jospeh has made three changes to his starting XV for Saturday's clash with the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein.

Hawkes Bay wing Ryan Tongia and Tasman lock Alex Ainley are set to make their Super Rugby debuts. Tongia replaces the injured Waisake Naholo on the right wing while Ainley takes over from Tom franklin in the second row.

Ainley, a seasoned ITM cup campaigner, returns from a fractured jaw sustained playing club rugby two months ago, while league convert, Tongia, makes the team after less than a year in the game.

The only other change is at openside where John Hardie replaces Dan Pryor.

Highlanders: 15 Ben Smith (vc), 14 Ryan Tongia, 13 Malakai Fekitoa, 12 Richard Buckman, 11 Patrick Osborne, 10 Lima Sopoaga, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Nasi Manu (vc), 7 John Hardie, 6 Gareth Evans, 5 Mark Reddish, 4 Alex Ainley, 3 Josh Hohneck, 2 Liam Coltman, 1 Brendon Edmonds.
Replacements: 16 Ash Dixon, 17 Daniel Lienert-Brown, 18 Ross Geldenhuys, 19 Tom Franklin, 20 Elliot Dixon, 21 Dan Pryor, 22 Fumiaki Tanaka, 23 Marty Banks.

Date: Saturday, May 16
Venue: Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein
Kick-off: 19:10 local (03:10 AEST, 05:10 NZST, 17:10 GMT)
Referee: Stuart Berry
Assistant Referees: Jaco van Heerden, Pro Legoete
TMO: Shaun Veldsman