All Blacks and former Blues players Ma'a Nonu and Tony
Woodcock will represent the Highlanders in a competition game
for the first time tomorrow night.
The pair, along with fellow newcomer and former Crusader Joe
Wheeler, a blindside flanker, have been named to play the
defending champion Chiefs at Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin.
Nonu will wear his usual No12 jersey alongside centre Phil
Burleigh. Woodcock will play at loosehead prop.
Wing Hosea Gear will captain the team in the absence of
suspended hooker Andrew Hore.
Former All Blacks lock Brad Thorn has been ruled out by a
calf strain, with midfielder Tamati Ellison also on the
sidelines after shoulder surgery.
Highlanders team to play the Chiefs, Forsyth Barr Stadium,
Dunedin tomorrow, kick-off 7.35pm
Ben Smith, Kade Poki, Phil Burleigh, Ma'a Nonu, Hosea Gear
(c), Lima Sopoaga, Aaron Smith, Nasi Manu, John Hardie, Joe
Wheeler, Josh Bekuis, Jarrad Hoeata, Ma'afu Fia, Brayden
Mitchell, Tony Woodock. Reserves: Liam Coltman, Bronson
Murray, Elliot Dixon, Tim Boys, Fumiaki Tanaka, Hayden
Parker, Buxton Popoali'i.