PIC Steelers to face Southland on Saturday

PIC Steelers to face Southland on Saturday

The PIC Steelers welcome back experienced lock Jimmy Tupou for Saturday’s Bunnings Warehouse NPC match against Southland at Navigation Homes Stadium.

Veteran lock Tupou had been one of coach Reon Graham’s best players through the opening weeks of the competition before he broke a finger that has seen him miss the past few matches.

He is a welcome return to the engine room for a must-win game if the PIC Steelers are to have any chance of making the quarter-finals.

Graham has made a number of other changes to the side that lost to Wellington in the Ranfurly Shield clash last week.

Ian West-Stevens starts at hooker with Ioane Moananu moving back to the bench. Bombay’s Adam Brash gets his first start of the season at blindside, while AJ Alatimu starts at second-five.

Josh Gray returns to the side on the right wing with Peniasi Malimali on the left wing and Sione Molia moving to fullback, replacing Etene Nanai-Seturo who is out with injury.

Alex McRobbie is set to play his blazer match off the bench.

The game kicks off at 4.35pm.

PIC Steelers: 1. Kauvaka Kaivelata, 2. Ian West-Stevens, 3. Salesi Tuifua, 4. Jimmy Tupou, 5. James Thompson, 6. Adam Brash, 7. Sean Reidy (capt), 8. Hoskins Sotutu, 9. Liam Daniela, 10. Riley Hohepa, 11. Peniasi Malimali, 12. AJ Alatimu, 13. Tevita Ofa, 14. Joshua Gray, 15. Sione Molia. Reserves: Ioane Moananu, Ezekiel Lindenmuth, Suetena Asomua, Sam Tuifua, Alex McRobbie, Cohen Brady-Leatham, Nikolai Foliaki, Blake Makiri.