Planet Rugby

Preview: Hurricanes v Kings

29th March 2013 07:13

Share:

Conrad Smith Hurricanes skipper 2012

Hurricanes: Host the Kings

The Kings face another difficult assignment on their Australasian tour when they face the Hurricanes in Wellington on Saturday.

The Hurricanes had a bye last weekend and will see this clash against the tournament newbies as an opportunity to close the gap on the tournament leaders.

After a slow start to their campaign, with losses to the Blues and Reds, the Hurricanes bounced back with narrow victories over the Crusaders and the Highlanders.

This match will present them with an opportunity to register a convincing win against the men from Port Elizabeth who battled for large periods of their first tour match - a 55-20 defeat to the Crusaders in Christchurch last weekend.

A player who will be keen to make an impact for the home side is full-back Andre Taylor who returns to the starting line-up after he was demoted to the replacements bench against the Highlanders.

The Hurricanes have a strong track record against South African sides, they've earned 39 wins from 72 games and have scored over 2,000 points for an average of 28.1 points per game, while conceding just a smudge over 20 points.

The Kings have done better than expected since coming into the competition. They kicked off their campaign with a memorable win over the Western Force and were competitive in defeats at home to the Sharks and Chiefs.

However, they struggled in that loss to the Crusaders and their squad depth has been severly tested after losing stalwarts like Luke Watson and Darron Nell to injury.

That, as well as the fiasco surrounding two of their foreign imports - Tomās Leonardi and Virgile Lacombe - who were forced to fly back to Port Elizabeth after the Kings exceeded SARU's quota for foreigners in their 30-man touring squad would have made a huge dent in their plans.

However, Kings head coach Matt Sexton remains positive who feels preparations were going well in Wellington.

"We've done some previews and have been looking at the footage of the Hurricanes, so we can prepare ourselves for a great performance on Saturday," he explained.

"If we give the Hurricanes the same time, space and momentum as we did last weekend against the Crusaders, it will be another long day.

"So we've been working pretty hard on making sure that doesn't happen, as well as making sure that we hold onto the ball through phases."

Prediction: The Kings know what's coming and the best they can do is to try and keep the score as low as possible.Hurricanes to win by 20 points!

The teams:

Hurricanes: 15 Andre Taylor, 14 Alapati Leiua/Matt Proctor, 13 Conrad Smith (c)/Alapati Leiua, 12 Tim Bateman, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara/Chris Smylie, 8 Victor Vito, 7 Karl Lowe, 6 Brad Shields, 5 Jason Eaton, 4 Jeremy Thrush, 3 Ben May, 2 Dane Coles, 1 Ben Franks.
Replacements: 16 Ash Dixon, 17 Reggie Goodes, 18 Mark Reddish, 19 Faifili Levave, 20 Chris Smylie/Samisoni Fisilau 21 Tusi Pisi, 22 Reynold Lee-Lo.

Kings: 15 George Whitehead, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Ronnie Cooke, 12 Andries Strauss (c), 11 Marcello Sampson, 10 Demetri Catrakillis, 9 Shaun Venter, 8 Jacques Engelbrecht, 7 Wimpie van der Walt, 6 Devin Oosthuizen, 5 David Bulbring, 4 Steven Sykes, 3 Kevin Buys, 2 Bandise Maku, 1 Schalk Ferreira.
Replacements: 16 Hannes Franklin, 17 Grant Kemp, 18 Rynier Bernardo, 19 Daniel Adongo, 20 Nicolas Vergallo, 21 Waylon Murray, 22 Hadleigh Parkes.

Date: Saturday, March 30
Kick-off: 16:35 (03:35 GMT)
Venue: Westpac Stadium, Wellington
Referee: Nick Briant (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Garratt Williamson (New Zealand), Mike Fraser (New Zealand)
Television match official: Vinny Munro (New Zealand)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 26
London Welsh vs Gloucester19:45
Saturday , September 27
Saracens vs Sale15:00
Leicester vs London Irish15:00
Northampton vs Bath15:15
Sunday , September 28
Exeter vs Harlequins14:00
Wasps vs Newcastle14:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
Rugby Championship
Saturday , September 27
South Africa vs Australia16:05
Argentina vs New Zealand23:10
More Rugby Championship fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , September 26
Edinburgh vs Scarlets19:35
Leinster vs Cardiff Blues19:35
Glasgow vs Connacht19:35
Saturday , September 27
Zebre vs Ulster15:00
Munster vs Ospreys18:30
Sunday , September 28
Newport Gwent D'gons vs Benetton Treviso16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , September 27
Toulon vs Montpellier18:00
Stade Francais vs La Rochelle18:00
Bayonne vs Toulouse18:00
Brive vs Bordeaux-Begles18:00
Oyonnax vs Clermont Auvergne18:00
Lyon vs Castres18:00
Grenoble vs Racing Metro Paris18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , September 26
Cheetahs vs Blue Bulls19:10
Saturday , September 27
Sharks vs Eastern Province Kings14:00
Pumas vs Western Province15:00
Griquas vs Lions15:00
More Currie Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , September 21
Newcastle 10 - 35 NorthamptonNewcastle vs Northampton Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Ospreys 62 - 13 EdinburghOspreys vs Edinburgh Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
ITM Cup
Otago 38 - 7 WaikatoOtago vs Waikato Report
Wellington 20 - 42 TasmanWellington vs Tasman Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , September 20
Sale 46 - 8 London WelshSale vs London Welsh Report
Harlequins 26 - 23 WaspsHarlequins vs Wasps Report
London Irish 32 - 36 SaracensLondon Irish vs Saracens Report
Bath 45 - 0 LeicesterBath vs Leicester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Newport Gwent D'gons 13 - 33 GlasgowNewport Gwent D
Scarlets 43 - 0 Benetton TrevisoScarlets vs Benetton Treviso Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Top 14
Racing Metro Paris 27 - 16 ToulouseRacing Metro Paris vs Toulouse Report
Grenoble 24 - 15 Bayonne
Montpellier 23 - 3 Stade FrancaisMontpellier vs Stade Francais Report
La Rochelle 26 - 29 Bordeaux-Begles
Clermont Auvergne 43 - 12 LyonClermont Auvergne vs Lyon Report
Castres 27 - 18 Oyonnax
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Western Province 36 - 12 GriquasWestern Province vs Griquas Report
Blue Bulls 15 - 26 SharksBlue Bulls vs Sharks Report
Eastern Province Kings 22 - 37 CheetahsEastern Province Kings vs Cheetahs Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Hawkes Bay 36 - 17 Bay Of Plenty
Manawatu 36 - 17 Southland
Auckland 32 - 7 North HarbourAuckland vs North Harbour Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 19
Gloucester 22 - 25 ExeterGloucester vs Exeter Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Munster 31 - 5 ZebreMunster vs Zebre Report
Cardiff Blues 9 - 26 UlsterCardiff Blues vs Ulster Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath314
2Saracens313
3Northampton311
4Exeter310
5Leicester Tigers39