Highlanders: Predicted line-up for round two*

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*The Highlanders have their bye straight off the bat, so we predict their first line-up of the season, which will come in round two against the Sharks.


Shannon Frizell and James Lentjes will spearhead the Highlanders flankers, and will be well supported by Dillon Hunt, Marino Mikaele-Tu’u and new signings Teariki Ben-Nicholas, Sione Misiloi, Zane Kapeli and Jesse Parete who joins the Highlanders from the Chiefs. The smiling assassin Liam Coltman will provide a huge amount of leadership in the front row, as well as fellow hooker Ash Dixon. Locks Josh Dickson and Pari Pari Parkinson offer good height, both standing over two metres. Parkinson’s a good prospect and with the likes of Sam Whitelock and Brodie Retallick overseas, there is a good opportunity for a ball winning lock to push for higher honours.


We are looking forward to seeing the nine and ten combination of Aaron Smith and Josh Ioane grow in 2020. Having made his All Blacks debut against Tonga last year, Ioane will come into the Super Rugby season with plenty of confidence and determination to build on a solid 2019. Ioane will have to impress with Mitch Hunt and Bryn Gatland set to be hot on his heels. The Highlanders maintain their solid midfield combination of Teihorangi Walden and Rob Thompson and Josh McKay will be looking to stake his mark at fullback, without Ben Smith in the mix.



Highlanders predicted team for round 2 (bye first week):


1. Daniel Lienert-Brown
2. Liam Coltman
3. Siate Tokolahi
4. Josh Dickson
5. Pari Pari Parkinson
6. Shannon Frizell
7. James Lentjes
8. Teariki Ben-Nicholas
9. Aaron Smith
10. Joshua Ioane
11. Patelesio Tomkinson
12. Teihorangi Walden
13. Rob Thompson
14. Kirisi Kuridrani
15. Josh McKay

16. Ash Dixon
17. Ayden Johnstone
18. Josh Iosefa-Scott
19. Jack Whetton
20. Dillon Hunt
21. Folau Fakatava
22. Mitchell Hunt
23. Michael Collins



The Highlanders have a bye for round one, but they kick off their season at home at Forsyth Barr Stadium against the Sharks on Friday 7 February at 7.05pm. Grab your Highlanders season tickets HERE. 



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