chiefs.co.nz and James Mortimer 28.Mar.2013Getty Images
Ahead of one of the most anticipated Investec Super Rugby matches this year, Chiefs Coach Dave Rennie said “The Blues are a very good side. They obviously had impressive victories against other New Zealand franchises in their opening weeks and had a few arm wrestles that they could have won. We have a lot of respect for them and this will be a big occasion for both sides.”
In the match sponsored by Ekan, Dave Rennie has made several changes to his side. Prop Toby Smith, flanker Tanerau Latimer, No 8 Fritz Lee and second five-eighth Bundee Aki all earn a starting spot. On the back of his solid return off the bench after a ten month injury break, centre Richard Kahui will make his first start in the no 13 jersey.
Halfback Augustine Pulu will start after Tawera Kerr-Barlow broke his jaw and Brendon Leonard will make his timely return on the bench after recovering from a cheek injury. Nick Crosswell, Sam Cane and Andrew Horrell all join the reserves.
Fans are encouraged to get to the match early to avoid traffic delays. Those attending the game will enjoy entertainment from Chiefs Toa, Chiefs Cheerleaders, some flag and poster giveaways and one lucky fan could win the Waikato Draught ‘Catch for Cash’. Last year a Bay of Plenty local won $3000 at the match in the Waikato Draught ‘Kick for Cash’.
Tickets prices start from $5 for kids (5-14 years), $20 for Adults and kids under 4 on the knee are free (all prices incur a service fee). Tickets are available from www.chiefs.co.nz, www.ticketdirect.co.nz, the Baycourt Community Arts Centre in Tauranga and The Warehouse stores in the region including Papamoa and Tauranga. Gates open at 5.30pm.
Liam Messam ©