PREVIEW: Chiefs v Jaguares

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Thursday, May 3, 2018    Getty Images

Match details:
Chiefs v Jaguares, 7.35pm Friday 4 May, Rotorua International Stadium. TICKETS.
Last time: Chiefs 30, Jaguares 26 (19 March 2016)

The Jaguares are on their hottest run of form since being admitted into Super Rugby in 2016 with three straight wins on their Australiasian tour. Their best win of the season came back in round six with a 49-35 win over last year’s finalists the Lions. The Chiefs are coming off a bye but enjoyed a comprehensive 36-12 win over the Reds in their last outing. In the try-scoring stakes, the Chiefs average four tries per game while the Jaguares are a little way back with an average of 2.9 tries every game.


Jaguares wing Emiliano Boffelli has lit up the competition this season with nine tries to sit equal top of the try-scoring standings with Hurricanes flyer Ben Lam. The 23-year-old has been lethal close to the line and dangerous from further out with 17 clean breaks placing him third-equal in Super Rugby. His combination with outstanding fullback Joaquin Tuculet has been one of the keys to the Jaguares resurgence this season. The dynamic pair thrive on counter attack and will look to run any kicked ball straight back at the Chiefs.


Chiefs coach Colin Cooper has made the call to rest world class lock Brodie Retallick for the Jaguares clash. Retallick has been in vintage form for the Chiefs this season and will leave a hole in the second row. The Jaguares boast an outstanding locking combination in Tomas Lavanini and Guido Petti while the Chiefs have selected impressive Canadian international Tyler Ardon to partner the reliable Michael Allardice.
The Chiefs have won their last 10 games against teams from outside of New Zealand.


The Jaguares made history last week with their first win over a New Zealand side when they defeated the Blues at Eden Park. While they have momentum and confidence on their side, they will be feeling the strain of a four-match tour down under and eager to get back to their Buenos Aires home base. The Chiefs have shown great resilience this season to notch up six victories and will be desperate to keep pace with the top teams in the New Zealand conference. The Chiefs should have the edge at home, but the Jaguares will bring plenty of passion and cannot be discounted.

Charlie Ngatai (co-c), Toni Pulu, Anton Lienert-Brown, Alex Nankivell, Solomon Alaimalo, Damian McKenzie, Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, Liam Messam, Sam Cane (co-c), Lachlan Boshier/Luke Jacobson, Tyler Ardron, Michael Allardice, Angus Ta'avao, Liam Polwart, Karl Tu'inukuafe. Reserves: Nathan Harris, Sam Prattley, Jeff Thwaites, Luke Jacobson/Jesse Parete, Pita Gus Sowakula, Brad Weber, Marty McKenzie, Levi Aumua.

Joaquin Tuculet (c), Ramiro Moyano, Matias Orlando, Jeronimo de la Fuente, Emiliano Boffelli, Nicolas Sanchez, Gonzalo Bertranou, Javier Ortega Desio, Marcos Kremer, Tomas Lezana, Tomas Lavanini, Guido Petti, Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, Julian Montoya, Santiago Garcia Botta. Reserves: Agustin Creevy, Javier Diaz, Santiago Medrano, Matias Alemanno, Leonardo Senatore, Martin Landajo, Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias, Juan Cruz Mallia.