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Chiefs keep Quinn Tupaea on left wing for clash against Reds

By Alex McLeod
(Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)

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The Chiefs have opted to keep star midfielder Quinn Tupaea on the left wing for this Friday’s Super Rugby Pacific clash against the Reds.


Tupaea was a surprise selection in the No 11 jersey for last weekend’s Super Round bout with the Waratahs at AAMI Park in Melbourne, having never played in the position and made a name for himself as a blockbusting second-five or centre.

However, the seven-test All Black produced a barnstorming display in his new position, scoring two first half tries to help the Chiefs dispatch the Waratahs in a 51-27 victory.

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Aotearoa Rugby Pod | Episode 11
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As such, Chiefs head coach Clayton McMillan has chosen to keep Tupaea on the left wing for this week’s clash against the Reds at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.

All in all, McMillan has made only one change to his starting lineup, with co-captain Sam Cane departing the side to return to New Zealand ahead of the expected birth of his first child.

That has paved the way for youngster Kaylum Boshier to return to the No 7 jersey, and with Cane’s fellow co-captain Brad Weber sidelined with a shoulder injury, blindside flanker Luke Jacobson will assume the captaincy role this weekend.

Jacobson will lead an otherwise unchanged match day side, with the only other alteration coming on the bench, where last week’s debutant Inga Finau has been replaced by loose forward Mitch Brown.


In a statement released on Wednesday, McMillan said the retention of almost everyone involved in last week’s victory is reflective of how well his team performed in the Victorian capital.

“It has been great for the team to be in Australia. It was pleasing to get a win first up against the much improved Waratahs, and we are using the extra time together to train hard, fine tune our structures and deepen our connection as a group,” McMillan said.

“We look forward to the challenge ahead at Suncorp this Friday. The Reds have demonstrated they are among the best teams in the competition. They are a well-balanced team, strong at set piece and blessed with some X factor players.

“We have rewarded the majority of last week’s squad with re-selection because they deserve it. The challenge is to keep fronting knowing that we have some experienced players waiting in the wings and nearing a return to play.


“We want selection headaches when we return home to play in front of our loyal supporters.”

Victory over the Reds would see the Chiefs leapfrog the Queenslanders into fourth place on the Super Rugby Pacific table, while a bonus-point win could result in McMillan’s troops overtaking the third-placed Crusaders.

Kick-off for Friday’s clash between the Reds and Chiefs is scheduled for 7:45pm local time [9:45pm NZT].

Chiefs team to play Reds

1. Aidan Ross
2. Samisoni Taukei’aho
3. Angus Ta’avao
4. Josh Lord
5. Tupou Vaa’i
6. Luke Jacobson ©
7. Kaylum Boshier
8. Pita Gus Sowakula
9. Cortez Ratima
10. Bryn Gatland
11. Quinn Tupaea
12. Rameka Poihipi
13. Alex Nankivell
14. Jonah Lowe
15. Chase Tiatia


16. Bradley Slater
17. Atu Moli
18. George Dyer
19. Naitoa Ah Kuoi
20. Samipeni Finau
21. Mitch Brown
22. Xavier Roe
23. Rivez Reihana


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RUGBYPASS+ All Blacks back row desperate for a shake-up All Blacks back row desperate for a shake-up