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Chiefs vs Highlanders: Super Rugby live scores, blog

15th February, 2019
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Chiefs

27

Match Complete

Highlanders

30

80
CHI27 : 30HIG

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Roar Guru
15th February, 2019
86
2171 Reads

Chiefs

27

Match Complete

Highlanders

30

76J. Ioane
75A. Smith
70J. Ioane
S. Donald67
64J. Ioane
63S. Frizell
E. Nanai-Seturo48
43J. Ioane
41J. Ioane
B. Weber38
E. Nanai-Seturo37
B. Weber22
A. Taavao-Matau21
T. Ardron18
15J. Ioane
14P. P. Parkinson

4
Tries
3
2
Conversions
3
1
Penalty Goals
3
0
Field Goals
0

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A war of attrition awaits between two Super Rugby contenders as the Highlanders play the Chiefs at Hamilton’s FMG Stadium. Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match from 5:35pm AEST.

A massive year in Rugby begins in the southern hemisphere, but before players can begin to salivate at the prospect of playing at a World Cup, there is business to take care of in Super Rugby.

In a World Cup year, expect the New Zealand teams to really give it their all this season as players vie for the right to board the plane to Japan and represent arguably the most dominant Rugby superpower on earth – the All Blacks.

That is why tonight’s contest between the Highlanders and Chiefs represents a fine opportunity for uncapped players to leave an impression on All Blacks coach Steve Hansen as he finalises his squad for the World Cup.

The Chiefs in particular are missing several stars, including Damien McKenzie, but this means a big window of opportunity for another player to leave their mark in a big game.

In team news Highlanders coach Aaron Mauger has handed youngster Josh Ioane a surprise start at five-eighth for Friday’s season opener against the Chiefs in Hamilton.

Ioane, 23, has beaten out the more experienced Marty Banks and Bryn Gatland for a start in the No 10 jersey.

Loosehead prop Ayden Johnstone will make his Super Rugby debut for the Highlanders while there are high hopes for 2.04m lock Pari Pari Parkinson.

All Blacks stars Aaron Smith and Shannon Frizell have been named on the bench with Kayne Hammington and Jackson Hemopo getting the starts at halfback and blindside flanker respectively.

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Thomas Umaga-Jensen, the nephew of former All Blacks captain Tana Umaga, is an interesting prospect at inside centre.

Meanwhile, Chiefs coach Colin Cooper has sprung his own surprise at No 10 by handing debutant Orbyn Leger a start.

Leger, 21, is a former New Zealand under-20s representative and known more as a centre.

All Black Damian McKenzie (ankle), his brother Marty (hip) and Rebels recruit Jack Debreczeni (abdominal) are all injured while recently re-signed veteran Stephen Donald is on the bench.

Leger is one of four players in line to make their Chiefs debuts along with winger Etene Nanai-Seturo, centre Tumua Manu and Japan international Ataata Moeakiola.

Prediction
Another well-contested affair is on the cards between two New Zealand sides that rarely give an inch at the best of times.

The Chiefs are missing some important players but depth in New Zealand rugby is incredibly strong, and the Chiefs will still be expected to compete here.

With that said, the experience and class of this Highlanders side should be enough to edge their rivals in a tight and entertaining contest.

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Highlanders by 5

Highlanders
Ben Smith (co-c), Matt Faddes, Rob Thompson, Thomas Umaga-Jensen, Tevita Li, Josh Ioane, Kayne Hammington, Luke Whitelock (co-c), James Lentjes, Jackson Hemopo, Josh Dickson, Pari Pari Parkinson, Tyrel Lomax, Liam Coltman, Ayden Johnstone

Reserves: Ash Dixon, Daniel Lienert-Brown, Siate Tokolahi, Shannon Frizell, Dillon Hunt, Aaron Smith, Bryn Gatland, Patelesio Tomkinson

Chiefs
Shaun Stevenson, Bailyn Sullivan, Tumua Manu, Anton Lienert-Brown, Etene Nanai-Seturo, Orbyn Leger, Brad Weber, Tyler Ardron, Lachlan Boshier, Mitchell Brown, Michael Allardice, Brodie Retallick, Angus Ta’avao, Nathan Harris, Atu Moli

Reserves: Samisoni Taukei’aho, Aidan Ross, Nepo Laulala, Taleni Seu, Jesse Parete, Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, Stephen Donald, Ataata Moeakiola

Time: 5:35pm AEST
Venue: Hamilton’s FMG Stadium
Betting: Chiefs $2.10, Highlanders $1.75

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