All Black Perenara set for Hurricanes return
Wellington - All Black scrumhalf TJ Perenara will make his comeback to the Hurricanes squad via the bench when they take on the Blues in Auckland on Friday (kick-off 09:35 SA time)
Perenara has been sidelined since early April after injuring his knee against the Sharks in Napier but has made excellent progress in his rehabilitation.
His inclusion is one of five changes to the Hurricanes match-day squad from the one that beat the Lions 28-19 in Wellington last Saturday.
The depth at lock has seen Hurricanes head coach Chris Boyd rotate players within the squad, with Sam Lousi starting in the second-row with Michael Fatialofa moving to the bench.
Wing Vince Aso was originally named to start but has been withdrawn because of a wrist injury and replaced by Julian Savea.
Prop Ben May has recovered from illness after he was withdrawn late for the Lions match, while flank Blade Thomson makes a welcome return to the squad.
Boyd said the squad was excited at the opportunity to head north to Eden Park for their first away match against a New Zealand side this season.
15 Matt Duffie, 14 Rieko Ioane, 13 Orbyn Leger, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Caleb Clarke, 10 Stephen Perofeta, 9 Augustine Pulu (captain), 8 Akira Ioane, 7 Murphy Taramai, 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Gerard Cowley-Tuioti, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu, 3 Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 2 James Parsons, 1 Ross Wright
Substitutes: 16 Matt Moulds, 17 Pauliasi Manu, 18 Sione Mafileo, 19 Ben Nee-Nee/Lyndon Dunshea, 20 Kara Pryor, 21 Jonathan Ruru/Sam Nock, 22 Dan Kirkpatrick, 23 Melani Nanai
15 Nehe Milner-Skudder, 14 Julian Savea, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Ben Lam, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Finlay Christie, 8 Gareth Evans, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Brad Shields (captain), 5 Sam Lousi, 4 Vaea Fifita, 3 Jeff To'omaga-Allen, 2 Ricky Riccitelli, 1 Toby Smith
Substitutes: 16 James O'Reilly, 17 Chris Eves, 18 Ben May, 19 Michael Fatialofa, 20 Blade Thomson, 21 TJ Perenara, 22 Ihaia West, 23 Jordie Barrett