SBW starts for Chiefs

Date published: June 11 2015

Sonny Bill Williams makes his long-awaited return to the Chiefs side for Saturday's Super Rugby battle with the Hurricanes in New Plymouth. 

Four local Taranaki players are in the matchday side that has multiple changes.

Pauliasi Manu, Quentin MacDonald and Ben Tameifuna will combine to make the starting front row with Hika Elliot rested. Lock Matt Symons also returns to the run-on XV.

Michael Leitch will shift to flanker while All Black Sam Cane takes his second pre-arranged break and Maama Vaipulu will wear the number eight jersey.

Brad Weber will take over the starting scrum-half duties this week while either James Lowe or Hosea Gear will start on the wing.

Six different players are added to the reserves: Taranaki’s Rhys Marshall and Mitch Crosswell will join Jamie Mackintosh, Michael Fitzgerald, Augustine Pulu and Andrew Horrell on the bench. 

Chiefs: 15 Tom Marshall, 14 Bryce Heem, 13 Charlie Ngatai, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 James Lowe/Hosea Gear, 10 Marty McKenzie, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Maama Vaipulu, 7 Michael Leitch, 6 Liam Messam (c), 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Matt Symons, 3 Ben Tameifuna, 2 Quentin MacDonald, 1 Pauliasi Manu.
Replacements: 16 Rhys Marshall, 17 Siate Tokolahi, 18 Jamie Mackintosh, 19 Michael Fitzgerald, 20 Mitchell Crosswell, 21 Augustine Pulu, 22 Andrew Horrell, 23 Damian McKenzie.

Date: Saturday, 13 June 
Venue: Yarrow Stadium, New Plymouth 
Kick-off: 19:35 local (07:35 GMT, 17:35 AEST, 09:35 SAST)
Referee: Chris Pollock
Assistant referees: Shane McDermott, Paul Williams
TMO: Chris Wratt