Chiefs pride on the line in final game away to Canes

By Micah Thompson

The Chiefs are playing for pride tonight and the opportunity to develop several younger players, coach Warren Gatland says as his team prepares to face the Hurricanes. 

Due to a bye next week, the Chiefs play their last game of the season against the Hurricanes in Wellington this evening. 

Gatland told superrugby.co.nz. the team has a lot on the line, despite their worst run of losses in Chiefs history - eight in a row.

“There is still a lot to play for in our eyes. The team have a lot of pride in the jersey and our club.  As always, they will be leaving it all on the field.” 

The Chiefs coach is using the game as a chance to blood a couple of younger players, prop Robb Cobb and wing Kini Naholo.

"We have two young debutants sitting on the bench who have been training hard and it is a good chance for them to get a taste of Super Rugby."

With the Hurricanes at home and coming off the back of an impressive 34-32 away win over the Crusaders in their last game, it will be a tough assignment for the Chiefs. 

The Hurricanes are fresh from a bye last round and need a bonus-point win to remain in the title hunt in the event the Crusaders or Blues, who are above them on the table, fluff their lines.

With more than 19,000 tickets sold for the Canes final home game of the season, the game which kicks off at 7.05pm is set to have an exciting atmosphere.

Hurricanes

1: Ben May 2: Dane Coles [cc] 3: Tyrel Lomax 4: James Blackwell 5: Scott Scrafton 6: Reed Prinsep 7: Du’Plessis Kirifi 8: Ardie Savea9: TJ Perenara [cc] 10: Jackson Garden-Bachop 11: Wes Goosen 12: Vince Aso 13: Peter Umaga-Jensen 14: Kobus Van Wyk 15: Jordie Barrett

Reserves:16: Asafo Aumua 17: Tevita Mafileo 18: Pouri Rakete-Stones 19: Kane Le’aupepe 20: Devan Flanders 21: Jamie Booth 22: Billy Proctor 23: Jonah Lowe

Chiefs

1. Ollie Norris 2. Samisoni Taukei’aho 3. Nepo Laulala 4. Naitoa Ah Kuoi 5. Mitchell Brown

6. Luke Jacobson 7. Sam Cane © 8. Pita Gus Sowakula 9. Brad Weber 10. Kaleb Trask 11. Sean Wainui 12. Alex Nankivell 13. Anton Lienert-Brown 14. Shaun Stevenson 15. Damian McKenzie  

Reserves: 16. Bradley Slater 17. Robb Cobb 18. Angus Ta’avao 19. Tupou Vaa’i 20. Mitchell Karpik 21. Lisati Milo-Harris 22. Quinn Tupaea 23. Kini Naholo