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Super Rugby, Round 12 - teams and predictions

PREVIEW: The Hurricanes beefed up their starting side for Saturday’s top-of-the-table Super Rugby showdown at the Blues, adding captain Brad Shields, as well ass All Blacks Jordie Barrett and TJ Perenara.

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The Hurricanes head to Eden Park just one point ahead of the second-placed Blues with four rounds left of the regular season.

Barrett takes his place in the midfield with the scrumhalf berth filled by Perenara, who scored his 63rd Super Rugby try off the bench last weekend to set a new competition record.

England international Shields packs down at blindside flank with junior New Zealand international Xavier Numia also coming into the side at prop.

Coach Clark Laidlaw said his team faced a tough task in Auckland, where the Hurricanes have not won for five years.

“This is an exciting opportunity for us to be able to take on a top side at their home and put our best foot forward,” said Laidlaw.

“We haven’t won in Auckland since 2019 – so we know that there is a massive challenge ahead.”

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The Hurricanes are the leading try scorers this season with 53, just ahead of the Blues and the Chiefs who are tied on 52 each.

Blues fullback Zarn Sullivan returns from a knee injury, while his sibling Bailyn is on the Hurricanes bench.

“It’s awesome, it’s a proud moment for our family,” Zarn Sullivan said.

The Blues have a point to prove after the Hurricanes carved out a 29-21 win when the teams met in Wellington in March.

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“It’s a top-of-the-table clash, I know the boys will be up for the occasion and wanting to right a few wrongs from when we lost to them down in Wellington,” Sullivan added.

The Blues have also selected a powerful side with a back row made up of All Blacks Dalton Papali’i, Hoskins Sotutu and Akira Ioane.

All Blacks centre Rieko Ioane sits out having suffered a concussion in last Friday’s 38-11 win at the Melbourne Rebels.

Round 12 presents some cracking rivalries and crucial match-ups as the play-offs approach.

The round is headlined by a top-of-the-table clash the Blues and the Hurricanes in Auckland on Saturday.

Meanwhile, the Highlanders face their southern rivals Crusaders as the Waratahs host the Brumbies in Sydney.

The Reds face a host of familiar faces on the Melbourne Rebels, with the Chiefs and Moana Pasifika kicking off the round.

In Perth, the Western Force will be desperate for victory as they take on the Fijian Drua.

All the Round 12 teams and predictions follow below …

Friday, May 10

MOANA PASIFIKA v CHIEFS
(Mount Smart Stadium, Auckland – Kick-off: 19.05; 07.05 GMT)

Prediction

@rugby365com: Chiefs by 19 points

Teams

MOANA PASIFIKA: 15 Danny Toala, 14 Nigel Ah Wong, 13 Pepesana Patafilo, 12 Lalomilo Lalomilo, 11 Nerai Fomai, 10 D’Angelo Leuila, 9 Aisea Halo, 8 Lotu Inisi, 7 Alamanda Motuga, 6 Miracle Fai’ilagi, 5 Allan Craig, 4 Tom Savage, 3 Suetena Asomua, 2 Sama Malolo (captain), 1 Sateki Latu.
Replacements: 16 Tomasi Maka, 17 Abraham Pole, 18 Sione Mafileo, 19 Semisi Paea, 20 Irie Papuni, 21 Siaoisi Nginingini, 22 Otumaka Mausia, 23 Kyren Taumoefolau.

CHIEFS: 15 Etene Nanai Seturo, 14 Liam Coombes-Fabling, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Quinn Tupaea, 11 Daniel Rona, 10 Josh Jacomb, 9 Xavier Roe, 8 Wallace Sititi, 7 Luke Jacobson (captain), 6 Simon Parker, 5 Tupou Vaa’i, 4 Manaaki Selby-Rickit, 3 Reuben O’Neill, 2 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 1 Ollie Norris.
Replacements: Tyrone Thompson, Jared Proffit, Sione Ahio, Hamilton Burr, Tom Florence, Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, Rameka Pohipi, Gideon Wrampling

Referee: Damon Murphy
Assistant referees: Nic Berry, George Myers

REDS v MELBOURNE REBELS
(Lang Park, Brisbane – Kick-off: 19.35; 11.35)

Prediction

@rugby365com: Reds by nine points

Teams

REDS: 15 Jock Campbell, 14 Tim Ryan, 13 Josh Flook, 12 Hunter Paisami, 11 Mac Grealy, 10 Lawson Creighton, 9 Kalani Thomas, 8 Harry Wilson, 7 Fraser McReight, 6 Liam Wright (co-captain), 5 Angus Blyth, 4 Ryan Smith, 3 Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, 2 Matt Faessler, 1 Sef Fa’agase.
Replacements: 16 Josh Nasser, 17 Peni Ravai, 18 Zane Nonggorr, 19 Connor Vest, 20 John Bryant, 21 Tate McDermott, 22 James O’Connor, 23 Suliasi Vunivalu.

REBELS: 15 Andrew Kellaway, 14 Lachie Anderson, 13 Filipo Daugunu, 12 Nick Jooste, 11 Darby Lancaster, 10 Carter Gordon, 9 Ryan Louwrens, 8 Rob Leota (captain), 7 Vaiolini Ekuasi, 6 Josh Kemeny, 5 Josh Canham, 4 Angelo Smith, 3 Taniela Tupou, 2 Jordan Uelese, 1 Isaac Kailea.
Replacements: 16 Alex Mafi, 17 Cabous Eloff, 18 Sam Talakai, 19 Tuaina Taii Tualima, 20 Maciu Nabolakasi, 21 Jack Maunder, 22 Jake Strachan, 23 Glen Vaihu.

Referee: Paul Williams
Assistant referees: Dan Waenga, Mike Winter

Saturday, May 11

BLUES v HURRICANES
(Eden Park, Auckland – Kick-off: 16.35; 04.35)

Prediction

@rugby365com: Blues by five points

Teams

BLUES: 15 Zarn Sullivan, 14 Mark Tele’a, 13 AJ Lam, 12 Bryce Heem, 11 Caleb Clarke, 10 Harry Plummer, 9 Taufa Funaki, 8 Hoskins Sotutu, 7 Dalton Papali’i, 6 Akira Ioane, 5 Sam Darry, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu (captain), 3 Marcel Renata, 2 Ricky Riccitelli, 1 Ofa Tu’ungafasi.
Replacements: 16 Kurt Eklund, 17 Joshua Fusitu’a, 18 Angus Ta’avao, 19 Josh Beehre, 20 Adrian Choat, 21 Sam Nock, 22 Corey Evans, 23 Cole Forbes.

HURRICANES: 15 Ruben Love, 14 Josh Moorby, 13 Billy Proctor, 12 Jordie Barrett, 11 Kini Naholo, 10 Brett Cameron, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Brayden Iose, 7 Peter Lakai, 6 Brad Shields (captain), 5 Isaia Walker-Leawere, 4 Caleb Delany, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 2 Kianu Kereru-Symes, 1 Xavier Numia.
Replacements: 16 Raymond Tuputupu, 17 Pouri Rakete-Stones, 18 Pasilio Tosi, 19 Justin Sangster, 20 Devan Flanders, 21 Du’Plessis Kirifi, 22 Richard Judd, 23 Bailyn Sullivan.

Referee: James Doleman
Assistant referees: Jono Bredin, Fraser Hannon

HIGHLANDERS v CRUSADERS
(Otago Stadium, Dunedin – Kick-off: 19.05; 07.05 GMT)

Prediction

@rugby365com: Crusaders by eight points

Teams

HIGHLANDERS: 15 Jacob Ratumaitavuki-Kneepkens, 14 Timoci Tavatavanawai, 13 Tanielu Tele’a, 12 Jake Te Hiwi, 11 Martin Bogodo, 10 Cameron Millar, 9 Folau Fakatava, 8 Nikora Broughton, 7 Sean Withy, 6 Oliver Haig, 5 Fabian Holland, 4 Mitch Dunshea, 3 Jermaine Ainsley, 2 Henry Bell, 1 Ethan de Groot (captain).
Replacements: 16 Jack Taylor, 17 Ayden Johnstone, 18 Saula Ma’u, 19 Will Tucker, 20 Will Stodart, 21 James Arscott, 22 Sam Gilbert, 23 Finn Hurley.

CRUSADERS: 15 Johnny McNicholl, 14 Chay Fihaki, 13 Levi Aumua, 12 Dallas McLeod, 11 Sevu Reece, 10 David Havili, 9 Noah Hotham, 8 Christian Lio-Willie, 7 Corey Kellow, 6 Cullen Grace, 5 Quinten Strange, 4 Scott Barrett (captain), 3 Fletcher Newell, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Tamaiti Williams.
Replacements: 16 George Bell, 17 George Bower, 18 Owen Franks, 19 Jamie Hannah, 20 Tom Christie, 21 Mitch Drummond, 22 Rivez Reihana, 23 Macca Springer.

Referee: Angus Gardner
Assistant referees: Jordan Way, Matt Kellahan

WARATAHS v BRUMBIES
(Sydney Football Stadium, Sydney – Kick-off: 19.35; 09.35 GMT)

Prediction

@rugby365com: Brumbies by five points

Teams

WARATAHS: 15 Mark Nawaqanitawase, 14 Triston Reilly, 13 Joey Walton, 12 Lalakai Foketi, 11 Dylan Pietsch, 10 Will Harrison, 9 Jake Gordon (captain), 8 Jed Holloway, 7 Charlie Gamble, 6 Lachlan Swinton, 5 Miles Amatosero, 4 Fergus Lee-Warner, 3 Harry Johnson-Holmes, 2 Jay Fonokalafi, 1 Hayden Thompson-Stringer.
Replacements: 16 Ben Sugars, 17 Lewis Ponini, 18 Pone Fa’amausili, 19 Hugh Sinclair, 20 Hunter Ward, 21 Jack Grant, 22 Tane Edmed, 23 Izaia Perese.

BRUMBIES: 15 Tom Wright, 14 Andy Muirhead, 13 Len Ikitau, 12 Tamati Tua, 11 Ollie Sapsford, 10 Jack Debreczeni, 9 Ryan Lonergan, 8 Charlie Cale, 7 Rory Scott, 6 Rob Valetini, 5 Nick Frost, 4 Darcy Swain, 3 Allan Alaalatoa (captain), 2 Connal McInerney, 1 Harry Vella.
Replacements: 16 Billy Pollard, 17 James Slipper, 18 Sosefo Kautai, 19 Cadeyrn Neville, 20 Luke Reimer, 21 Harrison Goddard, 22 Declan Meredith, 23 Ben O’Donnell.

Referee: Ben O’Keeffe
Assistant referees: Stu Curran, Jackson Henshaw

WESTERN FORCE v FIJIAN DRUA
(Perth Rectangular Stadium, Perth – Kick-off: 19.35; 11.35 GMT)

Prediction

@rugby365com: Fiji Drua by three points

Teams

WESTERN FORCE: 15 Kurtley Beale, 14 George Poolman, 13 Bayley Kuenzle, 12 Hamish Stewart, 11 Chase Tiatia, 10 Ben Donaldson, 9 Nic White, 8 Reed Prinsep, 7 Carlo Tizzano, 6 Will Harris, 5 Izack Rodda, 4 Jeremy Williams (captain), 3 Santiago Medrano, 2 Tom Horton, 1 Marley Pearce.
Replacements: 16 Feleti Kaitu’u, 17 Harry Hoopert, 18 Tiaan Tauakipulu, 19 Lopeti Faifua, 20 Michael Wells, 21 Henry Robertson, 22 Sam Spink, 23 Henry O’Donnell.

FIJI DRUA: 15 Ilaisa Droasese, 14 Selestino Ravutaumada, 13 Iosefo Masi, 12 Michael Naitokani, 11 Taniela Rakuro, 10 Isaiah Armstrong-Ravula, 9 Peni Matawalu, 8 Meli Derenalagi (captain), 7 Kitione Salawa, 6 Vilive Miramira, 5 Isoa Nasilasila, 4 Mesake Vocevoce, 3 Mesake Doge, 2 Tevita Ikanivere, 1 Haereiti Hetet.
Replacements: 16 Zuriel Togiatama, 17 Emosi Tuqiri, 18 Samu Tawake, 19 Leone Rotuisolia, 20 Motikiai Murray, 21 Simione Kuruvoli, 22 Kemu Valetini, 23 Epeli Momo.

Referee: Angus Mabey
Assistant referees: Jordan Kaminsky, Marcus Playle

 

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