The Chiefs have been hit by a late withdrawal just half an hour from kick-off against the Crusaders in round three of Super Rugby Aotearoa.

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In an announcement made on Sunday afternoon, the Hamilton franchise said that electric wing Solomon Alaimalo has been ruled out of action due to sickness.

The 24-year-old had originally come into the starting side in place of Shaun Stevenson following last week’s 24-12 defeat to the Blues at FMG Stadium Waikato.

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Instead, All Blacks Sevens flyer Etene Nanai-Seturo will come into the starting side from outside the match day squad for his first starting appearance for the Chiefs this season.

The match will be the youngster’s second appearance in the New Zealand domestic competition after he came off the bench in the dying stages of the Chiefs’ 28-27 defeat to the Highlanders in Dunedin a fortnight ago.

Nanai-Seturo had previously been playing for the All Blacks Sevens side on the World Sevens Series in the lead-up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, but has since returned to Warren Gatland’s side since the year-long postponement of the event.

He joins teammates Mitchell Brown, Bradley Slater and captain Sam Cane as the new additions to the Chiefs’ starting lineup from the side that took to the field last week.

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Kick-off for the Crusaders v Chiefs clash in Christchurch is scheduled for 3:35pm Sunday NZT.

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