Kahui back for Chiefs against Force - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Kahui back for Chiefs against Force

04/03/2009 02:24:05 PM Comments (0)

Centre Richard Kahui will make his return from injury on Friday night when the Chiefs look to break their Super 14 duck against the Western Force.

The Chiefs go into their match against the fourth-placed Force in Hamilton on the back of three bonus-point defeats.

Kahui has missed the past two matches with a hip injury, but passed a fitness test on Wednesday to go back into the starting 15.

His inclusion is the only change to the backline from the 22-15 loss to the Sharks at Waikato Stadium last Saturday.

However, skipper and fullback Mils Muliaina remains on the sidelines with a back injury, while No.8 Sione Lauaki has been ruled out with a hamstring strain.

Muliaina strained his back a fortnight ago in bizarre fashion, when simply standing up at a team video session.

Coach Ian Foster said Muliaina was progressing well, but was not quite ready to face the Sharks.

He said Lauaki's tight hamstring was also not going to be right in time, especially given the short turnaround.

Lauaki's unavailability means a change to the loose forward trio, with Tanerau Latimer moving from the openside to the blindside.

The No.7 jersey goes to Serge Lilo, who gets his first starting spot of the season, while stand-in captain Liam Messam shifts to No.8.

In the front row, Ben May returns as starting loosehead prop, combining with hooker Aled de Malmanche and tighthead James McGougan.

Foster said it was essential for the Chiefs to build on their previous efforts in three close defeats.

"We have made progress, but it is essential we build on the standards we have set and continue to improve for this encounter," he said.

Chiefs: Sosene Anesi, Lelia Masaga, Richard Kahui, Callum Bruce, Sitiveni Sivivatu, Stephen Donald, Brendon Leonard, Liam Messam (capt), Serge Lilo, Tanerau Latimer, Kevin O'Neill, Craig Clarke, James McGougan, Aled de Malmanche, Ben May. Res: Hika Elliot, Joe Savage, Toby Lynn, Colin Bourke, Toby Morland, Mike Delany, Jackson Willison.

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