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Hurricanes name strongest available XV to play Chiefs

By Ned Lester
Raymond Tuputupu of the Hurricanes celebrates after scoring a try during the round 13 Super Rugby Pacific match between Hurricanes and Moana Pasifika at Sky Stadium, on May 17, 2024, in Wellington, New Zealand. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)

The Hurricanes have relinquished their top seed in Super Rugby Pacific to the Blues, but their spot in second is far from safe as they head to Hamilton to play the Chiefs in round 14.

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They Wellington club have named their strongest available XV to start the contest, but are without three key players in All Black prop Tyrel Lomax and flankers Brad Shields and Du’Plessis Kirifi.

Starting in the No. 3 jersey in Lomax’s stead is Pasilio Tosi, while Devan Flanders dons the No. 6 jersey in his 50th game for the ‘Canes.

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Coach Clark Laidlaw said the team were excited to test themselves against one of the most talented squads in the competition, while putting their recent learnings into action.

“Moana gave us a fantastic challenge and it has helped us grow as a group. The Chiefs have threats all over the park, so it’s a case of a new week, new challenge for the team.”

While the coach has thrown a 6-2 bench split at some of their fiercest foes in 2024, Laidlaw has opted for the traditional 5-3 split for the Chiefs.

“Our bench has been fantastic this season, whether a 5-3 or 6-2 we’ve always had a nice balance and the ability for those players to come into the match at crucial stages and add an impact has been great to see.”

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“It’s great to be able to re-introduce Caleb Delany from the bench too, Caleb has been outstanding for us this season, and he’s really grown as a leader in our tight five.”

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Hurricanes team to face the Chiefs

  1. Xavier Numia
  2. Raymond Tuputupu
  3. Pasilio Tosi
  4. Justin Sangster
  5. Isaia Walker-Leawere
  6. Devan Flanders – 50th Game
  7. Peter Lakai
  8. Brayden Iose
  9. TJ Perenara
  10. Brett Cameron
  11. Kini Naholo
  12. Jordie Barrett (C)
  13. Billy Proctor
  14. Josh Moorby
  15. Ruben Love

Reserves

  1. James O’Reilly

  1. Pouri Rakete-Stones

  1. Tevita Mafileo

  1. Caleb Delany

  1. Te Kamaka Howden

  1. Richard Judd

  1. Peter Umaga-Jensen

  1. Salesi Rayasi

Unavailable: Asafo Aumua, Jacob Devery, Cam Roigard, Tyrel Lomax, Brad Shields, Du’Plessis Kirifi

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