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The Chiefs are looking forward to taking Investec Super Rugby back to Rotorua on Friday night.

As expected there have been some changes to the Chiefs tight five.  In the front row Mitchell Graham starts at loosehead prop while Michael Fitzgerald has been bracketed with former Chiefs and All Blacks player Ross Filipo, who was called into the side earlier this week as cover.  The confirmed starting lock will be joined in the second row by the newly re-signed Johan Bardoul.  The only other change to the run on side sees Augustine Pulu assume the starting role at halfback.

Prop Pauliasi Manu and halfback Brad Weber move to the reserves while utility back Tim Nanai-Williams returns to the match day 23.  

Chiefs Development lock Brian Alainu’uese gets the opportunity to make his Chiefs and Investec Super Rugby debut off the bench.  The 21 year-old has come through the Chiefs U18 programme and has been part of the Chiefs Development squad for the last two seasons.

Meanwhile a scan on winger James Lowe’s right shoulder has revealed he has an injury to the cartilage on the shoulder joint which will require a rehabilitation period of four to six weeks.    

Chiefs CEO Andrew Flexman said “We are rapt to be able to take a competition game to Rotorua, now it is up to the locals to show they want Super Rugby in their region by coming along on Friday night to support Liam and the team.”

Rotorua Boys High School will play Wesley College in the Chiefs Cup final as the curtain raiser for the Chiefs v Bulls match.  Chiefs captain Liam Messam is a former Rotorua Boys High student and Augustine Pulu and Brian Alainu’uese are both proud Wesley College old boys.

Every person who purchases a ticket to the Rotorua match sponsored by Napier Port and provides the required contact details, either through the TicketDirect website or by completing an entry form at the time of purchase through approved outlets, (fans are encouraged to do this prior to match day) will go in the draw to win dinner with Liam Messam, Sonny Bill Williams, Damian McKenzie and Dave Rennie.  The winner will be drawn on Saturday 23rd May and the dinner will be held at the Chiefs training base on Tuesday 26th May.

The Chiefs Friday night match against the Bulls is sponsored by Napier Port and will feature live pre-game entertainment from the Chiefs Maori Toa Group.  There will also be a FREE Chiefs bouncy castle and giveaways including BNZ flags and Generation Homes meres.

A $350,000 house is up for grabs at each Chiefs home game in the ‘Generation Homes Score a House Competition’.  If the Chiefs number 14 scores a try in the 14th minute, a Chiefs fan will be drawn from the registered list and win a brand new house from Generation Homes to the value of $350,000 if they are at the game!  If no try is scored in the 14th minute, a name will still be drawn and a Chiefs fan will win 8 tickets to the next home match. Fans must register first at

Fans can also take part in the nationwide PlaceMakers 25K Game Day promotion by. Visit for more information.

A FREE ticket to the Chiefs v Bulls match at Rotorua Stadium or Chiefs v Hurricanes match is available for junior rugby players that are registered in Chiefs region through their local rugby club.  Junior players need to present the postcard they received in the mail with the special offer on it which is part of the New Zealand WW100 Rugby Remembers commemorations

Tickets to the Chiefs v Bulls match at 7.35pm at Rotorua International Stadium on Friday 22 May are available from, Stirling Sports, the Howard Morrison Centre and Gate 2 on Devon Street at Rotorua International Stadium on Friday 22 May from 10am.

Ticket prices start from $20 for adults, $15 for students, $9 for children 14 years and under, and children aged 0-4 years are FREE on the knee. 

Gates open at 4.30pm with the curtain raiser kicking off at 4.40pm.

1. Mitchell Graham
2.  Hika Elliot
3.  Ben Tameifuna
4.  Michael Fitzgerald/Ross Filipo
5.  Johan Bardoul
6.  Liam Messam ©
7.  Sam Cane
8.  Michael Leitch
9.  Augustine Pulu
10. Damian McKenzie
11. Bryce Heem
12. Anton Lienert-Brown
13. Charlie Ngatai
14. Hosea Gear
15. Tom Marshall

16. Quentin MacDonald
17. Siate Tokolahi
18. Pauliasi Manu
19. Brian Alainu’uese*
20. Maama Vaipulu
21. Brad Weber
22. Andrew Horrell
23. Tim Nanai-Williams

*Chiefs debutant & Investec Super Rugby Debut

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