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Flu rules Mikkelson out of sevens

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 11/03/2017

A dose of the flu has meant All Blacks Sevens veteran Tim Mikkelson will miss this weekend's Vancouver leg of the world series .

Coach Scott Waldrom said Mikkelson hadn't recovered after picking up a bug earlier in the week.

"With the level of rugby that's required and the intensity at these tournaments, to take a guy in who's not 100 per cent isn't to the benefit of the team."

Tasman newcomer Andrew Knewstubb moves into the starting 12 to replace Mikkelson and travelling reserve Tone Ng Shiu takes the 13th position.

Waldrom has made a couple of changes to the team which finished fourth at the Las Vegas tournament last weekend, losing 19-15 to the United States in the bronze medal play-off.

Captain Scott Curry returns after missing the Las Vegas tournament as a precaution due to mild concussion.

Ambrose Curtis, who was called into the team as injury cover, has been named in the starting 12 after impressing off the bench last weekend.

The New Zealanders have yet to make a final in this year's world series, and in Vancouver face a challenging pool consisting of Russia, Scotland and Canada.

The Kiwis sit fourth on the overall standings with 71 points, 10 behind third-placed England.

South Africa, who have won four of the five tournaments to date, lead with 107 points, with Fiji second on 83.

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