Hurricanes rest All Blacks trio for Stormers clash
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Hurricanes flyhalf Beauden Barrett will take over the captaincy for Saturday’s Super Rugby match against the Stormers at Westpac Stadium.
Barrett, who has made 116 appearances for the Hurricanes and scored more than 1150 points, will have younger brother Jordie immediately outside him after the latter was named to start in the No.12 jersey.
Last year’s top try-scorer Ben Lam returns on the left wing which sees Wes Goosen move to the right from last week’s match against the Chiefs.
There will be a first start for Richard Judd at scrumhalf for what will be his fifth appearance for the Hurricanes since making his debut against the Crusaders last year.
Threee changes have been made in the forward pack with Liam Mitchell returning at lock while Vaea Fifita moves back to the side of the scrum.
The other changes up front are at hooker where Ricky Riccitelli returns to the starting side in place of Dane Coles, who is unavailable for the match along with TJ Perenara and Ngani Laumape, while Fraser Armstrong comes in for Toby Smith who has an ankle injury.
There is a fresh look to the bench with Hurricanes head coach John Plumtree returning experienced prop Jeff To’omaga-Allen to the matchday squad along with lock Isaia Walker-Leawere and utility back Fletcher Smith.
2018 Hurricanes squad member James O’Reilly has also been named on the bench with Asafo Aumua unavailable due to concussion.
Exciting Hawke’s Bay midfielder Danny Toala could make his Hurricanes debut if he comes off the bench.
“As we have said all year we are looking to trust the depth of our squad and give players opportunities and Saturday’s match against the Stormers will provide that,” Plumtree said.
“The Stormers have built a good record so far this season and we know exactly how tough and direct they will be and that means we are going to have to play really well to maintain our proud home record.”
— Hurricanes Rugby (@Hurricanesrugby) March 21, 2019
Hurricanes: 15 Chase Tiatia, 14 Wes Goosen, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Jordie Barrett, 11 Ben Lam, 10 Beauden Barrett (captain), 9 Richard Judd, 8 Reed Prinsep, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Vaea Fifita, 5 Liam Mitchell, 4 James Blackwell, 3 Ben May, 2 Ricky Riccitelli, 1 Fraser Armstrong.
Replacements: 16 James O’Reilly, 17 Xavier Numia, 18 Jeff To’omaga-Allen, 19 Isaia Walker-Leawere, 20 Sam Henwood, 21 Finlay Christie, 22 Fletcher Smith, 23 Danny Toala.
Date: Saturday, March 23
Venue: Westpac Stadium, Wellington
Kick-off: 19.35 (08.35 SA time; 06.35 GMT)
Referee: Glen Jackson (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Nick Briant (New Zealand), Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand)
TMO: Glenn Newman (New Zealand)