Chiefs injuries cause concern

Date published: February 23 2015

The Chiefs might be unbeaten after the first two games of the season but coach Dave Rennie has a number of injuries to contend with.

Sam Cane and Sonny Bill Williams were both late withdrawals before kickoff against the Brumbies last Friday, with Tevita Koloamatangi and Maama Vaipulu the latest players to pick up knocks in the win.

Number eight Liam Squire is still working his way back to fitness, leaving the Chiefs a little light in terms of resources in the back row.

The conditioning of All Blacks forwards Brodie Retallick and Liam Messam was severly tested in Round 2 with both players coming through, including a full 80 minutes from Messam after the other injuries.

"Sam [Cane] will definitely be right this week," Dave Rennie told Fairfax Media.

"We were hoping Liam [Squire] would be available this week but there is still a question mark over that. Again we'll know in the next couple of days. He's certainly improved a lot but we don't want to take any risks before he's fully recovered.

"Conditioning-wise that was pretty impressive [from Messam] – to play 80 minutes straight off the bat."

Otherwise, Rennie was just happy to win against "a very good side" in the Brumbies.

"It's such a tough competition – that's why we were happy with the win at the weekend. The Brumbies are a really good side and while, yes, we weren't at our best, we managed to win an arm wrestle," added Rennie.

"You've got to win those tight games and the key is if you can just keep winning, everyone's going to beat everyone else. We've just got to focus on us and while we know we need to be better, we're reasonably happy.

"We've blooded 28 players now and are creating a bit of depth within the squad."