Blaikie only change for Highlanders
May 10, 2000
Veteran Highlanders lock John Blaikie has been left out of the squad to face the Waratahs on Saturday after failing to recover from a head injury.
Blaikie collided with Bulls lock Wium Basson at Witbank on Sunday and has been replaced by former second row partner Brendon Timmins. The only other player that was not considered for selection was All Black prop Kees Meeuws, who is struggling with a hamstring strain.
The mood in the Highlanders camp is a confident one after sneaking a last-minute win against the Bulls via Tony Brown's penalty. Captain Taine Randell is ignoring the fact that the Waratahs have won the last seven games against Otago or Highlanders teams. "We have to win and get at least four, preferably five points."
Highlanders team: Jeff Wilson, Marc Ellis, Romi Ropati, Rua Tipoki, Pita Alatini, Tony Brown, Byron Kelleher, Taine Randell (capt), Josh Kronfeld, Simon Maling, Brendon Timmins, Kelvin Middleton, Carl Hoeft, Anton Oliver, Joe McDonnell. Substitutes: Brendan Laney, Karl TeNana, Brett McCormack, Paul Miller, Samiu Vahafolau, Carl Hayman, Tom Willis.
The All Blacks' form is not a peaking issue, but Hansen must threaten to wield his axe, to demand improvement, Craig Dowd writes
"It has been the World Cup that smashed down the gender barriers of the sport." Tom Hamilton looks back at a remarkable tournament
A selection of the best pictures from England's historic World Cup triumph in Paris as they beat Canada 21-9
The latest Week in Pictures takes in the Women's World Cup, the opening round of the Top 14 and the Rugby Championship