Fly-half Beauden Barrett is among a trio of All Blacks who will return to the Hurricanes starting XV for Saturday’s Super Rugby derby against the Chiefs in Wellington.
Barrett, along with younger brother Jordie and in-form loose forward Ardie Savea, missed last week’s 29-23 win over the Sunwolves in Tokyo but have all been named to start against their New Zealand rivals.
The trio are part of five changes Hurricanes head coach John Plumtree has made to the run-on side.
The others are up front where Asafo Aumua starts at hooker while lock Kane La’aupepe returns after he missed the Sunwolves match due to illness.
Jordie Barrett will start at full-back with Chase Tiatia moving to the wing in place of Ben Lam who suffered a minor leg injury in Japan.
Lam’s absence has also seen a change on the bench with specialist wing Salesi Rayasi named in the reserves.
Plumtree said the onus was on the squad to improve on some aspects of their play as they faced another tough New Zealand derby.
“We know the character the side is showing us each week and we know we can get better and we will need to be against the Chiefs,” he said.
“The squad is really excited about getting back to Our House at Westpac Stadium after a few weeks away and we want to put a performance together that we and our fans are proud of.”
Hurricanes: 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Wes Goosen, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Chase Tiatia, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara (c), 8 Reed Prinsep, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Vaea Fifita, 5 Kane Leaupepe, 4 James Blackwell, 3 Ben May, 2 Asafo Aumua, 1 Fraser Armstrong Replacements: 16 Ricky Riccitelli, 17 Xavier Numia, 18 Jeff To’omaga-Allen, 19 Isaia Walker-Leawere, 20 Sam Henwood, 21 Richard Judd, 22 James Marshall, 23 Salesi Rayasi
Date: Saturday, April 27 Venue: Westpac Stadium, Wellington Kick-off: 19:35 local (08:35 BST, 07:35 GMT) Referee: Rasta Rasivhenge (South Africa) Assistant referees: Mike Fraser (New Zealand), Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand) TMO: Shane McDermott (New Zealand)