Wellington - Wallabies flyhalf Bernard Foley has overcome concussion symptoms and been cleared to play for the Waratahs on Friday as they try to get their Super Rugby season back on track against the Hurricanes.
Foley missed the Waratahs' first four games before returning to face the Melbourne Rebels two weeks ago. However, the symptoms reappeared and he missed last Sunday's 41-22 loss to the Crusaders.
"Bernard has been given the clearance after further expert reviews, including a review with neurologist, and treatment over the course of the last week," Waratahs coach Daryl Gibson said in a statement on Wednesday.
Foley's fellow Wallabies back Rob Horne has also returned to the starting side, meaning Israel Folau reverts to fullback after playing all but one of the Waratahs' six games at centre.
Hulking wing Taqele Naiyaravoro has also earned his first start of the season after a barnstorming performance against the Crusaders when he ran over the top of George Bridge to score.
There will be no clash of giants on the wing, however, as the Hurricanes' Julian Savea has been rested for Friday's match at Wellington Regional Stadium.
Vince Aso, the competition's top try-scorer with seven, has also been rested, allowing Cory Jane to make his first appearance this season while Wes Goosen gets his first start.
"If you look at Julian and Vince, they've both started all five matches so far, so it's a chance for them to freshen up, but equally it gives Cory and Wes an opportunity," Hurricanes' coach Chris Boyd said.
"At the end of the day we have faith in the depth in our squad, so whoever runs out there were confident they'll do the job. It's a long season and you need to utilise your whole squad."
The Hurricanes will again be without All Blacks hooker Dane Coles, who has failed to recover from a knee injury.
Loose forward Ardie Savea was not considered after he sustained a calf injury in their 34-15 win over the Reds.
The Hurricanes, last year's winners, are looming again as one of the competition favourites and have 20 points from five matches.
The Waratahs have just eight points after six games but have the benefit of playing in a poorly-performing Australian conference and remain in the playoff hunt, though they must start picking up points to stay in contention.
15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Cory
Jane, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Wes Goosen, 10
Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara (captain), 8 Reed Prinsep, 7 Callum
Gibbins, 6 Brad Shields, 5 Michael Fatialofa, 4 Mark Abbott, 3 Jeff
To'omaga-Allen, 2 Ricky Riccitelli, 1 Ben May
Substitutes: 16 Leni
Apisai, 17 Chris Eves, 18 Mike Kainga, 19 Vaea Fifita, 20 Toa Halafihi,
21 Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, 22 Otere Black, 23 Vince Aso
15 Israel Folau, 14 Taqele Naiyaravoro, 13 Rob Horne, 12 David Horwitz, 11 Cam Clark, 10
Bernard Foley, 9 Jake Gordon, 8 Michael Wells, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Ned Hanigan,
5 Will Skelton, 4 Dean Mumm, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tolu Latu, 1 Paddy Ryan
16 Damien Fitzpatrick, 17 Sam Needs, 18 David Lolohea, 19 David
McDuling, 20 Jed Holloway, 21 Nick Phipps, 22 Bryce Hegarty, 23 Andrew