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World Rugby trial sees 13-man bench used for NZ U20's opening Oceania match

By Online Editors
NZ U20 captain Kianu Kereru Symes tackles Matt Faddes during the Mitre 10 Cup. (Photo by Dianne Manson / Getty Images)

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A World Rugby trial will see 13-man benches used during New Zealand’s opening match of the Oceania Under 20 Championship.


The 28-strong team will be captained by Hawke’s Bay’s Kianu Kereru Symes, who will run out at hooker. Kereru Symes will be flanked by Ollie Norris and Kaliopasi Uluilakepa who are both returning from the 2018 campaign.

Devan Flanders, also a member of the 2018 team, gets the start at eight, while Waikato’s Quinn Tupaea will bring his Mitre 10 Cup experience to the midfield.

The team arrived in Australia on Monday and will play three matches in the Under 20 Oceania Championship.

Coach Craig Philpott said the Oceania tournament is the perfect opportunity to develop combinations and grow as a team.

“We want to see all players getting an opportunity in these first two matches. The aim is to nail our systems and show plenty of physical intent,” said Philpott.

Eight of the 13 reserves are able to be used as replacements during the match.


New Zealand:

1. Ollie Norris (Waikato)
2. Kianu Kereru Symes – captain (Hawke’s Bay)
3. Kaliopasi Uluilakepa (Manawatu)
4. Naitoa Ah Kuoi (Wellington)
5. Tupou Vaa’i (Taranaki)
6. Samipeni Finau (Waikato)
7. Jeriah Mua (Bay of Plenty)
8. Devan Flanders (Hawke’s Bay)
9. Leroy Carter (Bay of Plenty)
10. Fergus Burke (Canterbury)
11. Sam Gilbert (Canterbury)
12. Dallas McLeod (Canterbury)
13. Quinn Tupaea (Waikato)
14. Lalomilo Lalomilo (Bay of Plenty)
15. Danny Toala (Hawke’s Bay)

16. Shilo Klein (Canterbury)
17. George Dyer (Waikato)
18. Fletcher Newell (Canterbury)
19. Tamaiti Williams (Canterbury)
20. Taine Plumtree (Wellington)
21. Cullen Grace (Canterbury)
22. Kaylum Boshier (Taranaki)
23. Kohan Herbert (Bay of Plenty)
24. Simon Parker (Waikato)
25. Taufa Funaki (Auckland)
26. Rivez Reihana (Waikato)
27. Chay Fihaki (Canterbury)
28. Cole Forbes (Bay of Plenty)

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World Rugby trial sees 13-man bench used for NZ U20's opening Oceania match