The Bus returns to face the Blues

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Savea is one of three changes Hurricanes head coach Jason Holland has made to the run-on side which helped defeat the Highlanders 30-19 in Dunedin last round.

Up front, Fraser Armstrong has been named to start at loosehead prop, while James Blackwell returns to the second row in place of Isaia Walker-Leawere, who moves to the bench alongside Wes Goosen and Xavier Numia after the trio started under the roof at Forsyth-Barr Stadium.

Holland said the coaching staff were continuing their plan to rotate some players and give others an opportunity through the tough Super Rugby Aotearoa campaign.

He was more than happy with how the squad had returned to training this week after what was a morale boosting performance against the Highlanders.

“We have felt all the way through we have been doing a lot of positive things, it was just about taking out a few of the things that were costing us picking up points and wins,” he said.

“We are excited about the challenge of heading to Eden Park in search of our second win but we also know we’ll have to keep making improvements to our overall game.”

With last week’s round of results condensing the competition ladder behind the leading Crusaders, Holland said there remained plenty of incentive for the squad.

“We have plenty to play for and we will go to Auckland with plenty of belief,” Holland added.

Kick-off is at 7.05pm, Saturday.


The Hurricanes squad to face the Blues is:


1: FRASER ARMSTRONG
2: DANE COLES
3: TYREL LOMAX
4: JAMES BLACKWELL
5: SCOTT SCRAFTON
6: REED PRINSEP
7: DU’PLESSIS KIRIFI
8: ARDIE SAVEA [C]
9: LUKE CAMPBELL
10: ORBYN LEGER
11: SALESI RAYASI
12: NGANI LAUMAPE
13: BILLY PROCTOR
14: JULIAN SAVEA
15: JORDIE BARRETT

Reserves: RICKY RICCITELLI, XAVIER NUMIA, TEVITA MAFILEO, ISAIA WALKER-LEAWERE, DEVAN FLANDERS, JONATHAN TAUMATEINE, PETER UMAGA-JENSEN, WES GOOSEN

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