Hurricanes to unleash Coles against Sharks
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Dane Coles has been named in the 23-man squad set to take on the Sharks in Wellington on Saturday.
It’s the Hurricanes’ first home game of the 2020 season and comes off the back of a 26-23 win against the Jaguares in Buenos Aires.
Coles, who returns from injury, will start the game on the bench, but says he’s excited at the potential of getting in some game time.
“It’s been a while, but I’m feeling in good nick. I have been working hard to get back out there and I’m looking forward to having a run.”
He says coming back in time for ‘Opening Night’ is exciting.
“We love getting out there in front of our fans at Sky Stadium. Home games are pretty special.”
TJ Perenara will captain the side, which remains largely unchanged from last weekend.
Vince Aso will replace Billy Proctor at outside centre, while Scott Scrafton makes a return to the forward pack. In the loose forwards, Reed Prinsep will start at No.8 with Gareth Evans moving to openside, while Vaea Fifita makes his first start of the season.
Jackson Garden-Bachop gets his second start in a row at first-five with Fletcher Smith back on the bench.
Hurricanes: 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Wes Goosen, 13 Vince Aso, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Ben Lam, 10 Jackson Garden-Bachop, 9 TJ Perenara (captain), 8 Reed Prinsep, 7 Gareth Evans, 6 Vaea Fifita, 5 Scott Scrafton, 4 Isaia Walker-Leawere, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 2 Asafo Aumua, 1 Fraser Armstrong.
Replacements: 16 Dane Coles, 17 Pouri Rakete-Stones, 18 Alex Fidow, 19 Liam Mitchell, 20 Du’Plessis Kirifi, 21 Jamie Booth, 22 Fletcher Smith, 23 Billy Proctor.
Date: Saturday, 15 February
Venue: Sky Stadium, Wellington
Kick-off: 19.05 (08.05 SA time; 06.05 GMT)
Referee: Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Mike Fraser (New Zealand), Rebecca Mahoney (New Zealand)
TMO: Aaron Paterson (New Zealand)
— Hurricanes Rugby (@Hurricanesrugby) February 12, 2020