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Highlanders get back-up for friendly

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 22/06/2016

The Highlanders have called in several provincial representatives for their Super Rugby warm-up match against the Crusaders in Oamaru.

The Highlanders have nine players on international duty, including two halfbacks, All Black Aaron Smith and Japan's Fumiaki Tanaka.

Their replacements for the fixture on Thursday are Te Aihe Toma (Bay of Plenty) and Jamie Booth (Manawatu).

Waikato hooker Hame Faiva has been included for the injured Liam Coltman, while Otago midfielders Michael Collins and Faasiu Fuatai will provide midfield cover.

The Highlanders are sitting in the fifth and last play-off spot in Super Rugby's Australasian group.

When the competition resumes in the first weekend of July, they will face the Southern Kings in Port Elizabeth as part of a two-match overseas trip that includes taking on the Jaguares in Buenos Aires.

The Crusaders have several development players in their squad for the friendly against the Highlanders.

Sitting top of the overall table, the Crusaders are back in Super Rugby action against the second-placed New Zealand side, the Chiefs, in Hamilton on July 1.

Highlanders: Matt Faddes, Jack Wilson, Jason Emery, Rob Thompson, Ryan Tongia, Marty Banks, Te Aihe Toma, Luke Whitelock, Shane Christie (capt), Gareth Evans, Joe Wheeler, Mark Reddish, Josh Hohneck, Greg Pleasants-Tate, Aki Seiuli. Reserves: Ash Dixon, Daniel Lienert-Brown, Ross Geldenhuys, James Lentjes, Dan Pryor, Jamie Booth, Fletcher Smith, Teihorangi Walden, Michael Collins, Faasiu Fuatai, Hame Faiva, Tom Franklin, Siosiua Halanukonuka, Jackson Hemopo, Craig Millar.

Crusaders: Marty McKenzie, Jone Macilai, Kieron Fonotia, David Havili, Nemani Nadolo, Richie Mo'unga, Mitchell Drummond, Jordan Taufua, Matt Todd, Reed Prinsep, Jimmy Tupou (capt), Scott Barrett, Mike Alaalatoa, Ben Funnell, Alex Hodgman. Reserves: Nathan Vella, Tom Hill, Samu Twake, Pari Pari Parkinson, Brad Hemopo, Jed Brown, Leon Fukofuka, Mitchell Hunt, Jack Goodhue, Sean Wainui.

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