Preview: Tasman v Taranaki

Date published: September 10 2014

Tasman Makos coach Kieran Keane has made three changes to his run-on side for Thursday's clash with Taranaki in Nelson.

Tasman Makos coach Kieran Keane has made three changes to his run-on side for Thursday's clash with Taranaki in Nelson.

All the changes are made in the pack as Keane remains loyal to his back-line which started against Waikato last week.

Up front, regular Makos skipper Shane Christie has been rested and is replaced by Tevita Koloamatangi at openside flank while Joe Wheeler comes into the second row as Tevita Cavubati's replacement and the side's new captain.

The final change is in the front row where Ross Geldenhuys returns after recovering from injury to start at tighthead with Tevita Cavubati dropping down to the bench.

Amongst the replacements, there are three new faces. Siua Hulanukunuka covers the front row while Vernon Fredricks and is James Schrader are the cover the back row and back-line respectively.

Meanwhile, Taranaki have opted to rest regular midfielder Charlie Ngatai. Taranaki coach Colin Cooper believes the short turnaround in matches has taken its toll and Ngatai's absence has forced the coach into a positional the back.

Kurt Baker returns to the run-on side at full-back with James Marshall moving to inside centre to take Ngatai's place. And in the forwards, Berny Hall and Riki Hoeata are replaced by Doug Tietjens and Leighton Price at openside flanker and lock respectively.

Hoeata takes his place on the Taranaki bench, alongside Mitchell Crosswell and Beaudein Waaka who are the other new faces amongst the replacements.

The teams:

Tasman: 15 Robbie Malneek, 14 Bryce Heem, 13 Kieron Fonotia, 12 Tom Marshall, 11 James Lowe, 10 Marty Banks, 9 Jimmy Cowan, 8 Liam Squire, 7 Tevita Koloamatangi, 6 Pete Samu, 5 Joe Wheeler (c), 4 Alex Ainley, 3 Ross Geldenhuys, 2 Quentin MacDonald, 1 Tim Perry.
Replacements: 16 Jesse MacDonald, 17 Siua Hulanukunuka, 18 Tevita Cavubati, 19 Vernon Fredricks, 20 Billy Guyton, 21 James Schrader, 22 David Havili.

Taranaki: 15 Kurt Baker, 14 Codey Rei, 13 Seta Tamanivalu, 12 James Marshall (c), 11 Waisake Naholo, 10 Marty McKenzie, 9 Jamison Gibson-Park, 8 Blade Thomson, 7 Doug Tietjens, 6 Iopu Iopu-Aso, 5 James Broadhurst, 4 Leighton Price, 3 Angus Ta'avao, 2 Rhys Marshall, 1 Mitchell Graham.
Replacements: 16:Sione Lea, 17 Ryan Cocker, 18 Riki Hoeata, 19 , 20 Chris Smylie, 21 Jackson Ormond, 22 Beaudein Waaka.

Date: Thursday, September 11
Kick-off: 19:35 (08:35 BST, 07:35 GMT)
Venue: Trafalgar Stadium, Nelson
Referee: Shane McDermott