Planet Rugby

Preview: Taranaki v Tasman

31st August 2012 09:23

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taranaki ranfurly shield

Up for grabs: The Ranfurly Shield

Taranaki will be on high alert when Tasman visit Yarrow Stadium in New Plymouth for Saturday's Ranfurly Shield clash.

The hosts opened their ITM Cup campaign with a 37-22 win over Bay of Plenty, but the visiting Makos who won't be short of confidence either after knocking over four-times defending champions Canterbury last Friday.

Tasman had to leave it until the last minute to beat the Cantabs 25-22, but few will argue that the better team won and showed this year's team has significantly more to offer than the tired, underpowered 2011 version which finished dead last in the Championships division.

The Amber and Blacks know they'll need to put in an 80-minute performance to keep hold of the famous Log o' Wood.

Providing Taranaki can see off Tasman, they will then face challenges from Hawke's Bay and Canterbury in successive weeks, a tough ask for any side in this competition.

In team news, Taranaki coach Colin Cooper has made six changes to his side.

All Blacks hooker Andrew Hore is a welcome addition to the Taranaki bench, with Laurence Corlett set to start at hooker after recovering from injury.

Other changes from the side that beat Bay of Plenty sees scrum-half Brett Goodin and wing Jackson Ormond promoted to the run-on XV.

Kurt Baker moves from centre to full-back, taking the place of Andre Taylor who picked up a hand injury against the Steamers. The other inclusion is Willie Rickards at centre, making his first start of the year.

Prediction: History is with the Amber and Blacks, with the Makos having beaten them just once in seven attempts dating back to 2006. Taranaki by eight!

The teams:

Taranaki: 15 Kurt Baker, 14 Waisake Naholo, 13 Willie Rickards, 12 Jayden Hayward, 11 Frazier Climo, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Jamison Gibson-Park, 8 Blade Thomson, 7 Chris Walker, 6 Jarrad Hoeata, 5 Jason Eaton (c), 4 James Broadhurst, 3 Michael Bent, 2 Laurence Corlett, 1 Chris King.
Replacements: 16 Andrew Hore, 17 Carl Carmichael, 18 Kane Barrett, 19 Scott Waldrom, 20 Brett Goodin, 21 James Marshall, 22 Jackson Ormond.

Tasman: 15 Robbie Malneek, 14 Peter Betham, 13 Bryce Heem, 12 Andrew Goodman (c), 11 James Lowe, 10 Hayden Cripps, 9 Jeremy Su'a, 8 Jordan Taufua, 7 Shane Christie, 6 Joe Wheeler, 5 Tevita Cavubati, 4 Filipo Levi, 3 Campbell Johnstone, 2 Quentin MacDonald, 1 Sam Prattley.
Replacements: 16 Francis Smith, 17 Tim Perry, 18 Vernon Fredricks, 19 Tevita Kolomatangi, 20 Steve Alfeld, 21 Kieron Fonotia, 22 George Millar.

Referee: Vinny Munro

  • ITM Cup Fixtures
Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
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ITM Cup
Saturday , August 30
Counties Manukau vs Hawkes BayCounties Manukau vs Hawkes Bay Preview
Southland vs Otago17:35
North Harbour vs WaikatoNorth Harbour vs Waikato Preview
Sunday , August 31
Taranaki vs Bay Of Plenty14:35
Auckland vs TasmanAuckland vs Tasman Preview
Wednesday, September 3
Manawatu vs Bay Of Plenty19:35
Thursday , September 4
Otago vs Canterbury19:35
Friday , September 5
Tasman vs Waikato18:05
Northland vs Hawkes Bay20:05
Saturday , September 6
Auckland vs Wellington14:35
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ITM Cup
Friday , August 29
Wellington 21 - 27 ManawatuWellington vs Manawatu Report
Thursday , August 28
Canterbury 48 - 3 NorthlandCanterbury vs Northland Report
Wednesday, August 27
Waikato 17 - 46 TaranakiWaikato vs Taranaki Report
Sunday , August 24
Manawatu 7 - 35 AucklandManawatu vs Auckland Report
Bay Of Plenty 27 - 56 TasmanBay Of Plenty vs Tasman Report
Saturday , August 23
Northland 35 - 5 WellingtonNorthland vs Wellington Report
Counties Manukau 29 - 25 OtagoCounties Manukau vs Otago Report
Friday , August 22
Waikato 27 - 58 CanterburyWaikato vs Canterbury Report
Hawkes Bay 29 - 26 TaranakiHawkes Bay vs Taranaki Report
Thursday , August 21
North Harbour 21 - 25 Southland
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PosTeamPPts
1Canterbury315
2Tasman210
3Taranaki38
4Counties Manukau27
5Auckland25