Canterbury ( $1.13) vs ($5.25) Otago – BET NOW
Odds as at 1.10pm 04/09/14
The defending ITM Cup Premiership champions travel down south to play their great Southern rivals, now a Championship outfit but no less dangerous to the red and blacks despite recent lopsided results.
Thursday 4 September, 7.35pm at Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin
Played: 160, 1881-2013
Canterbury wins: 88 | Otago wins: 63 | Draws: 10
Robertson is without prop Joe Moody and fly-half Colin Slade due to All Black call-ups so Alex Hodgman returns and Richie Mo’unga is at ten.
In other changes to the forward pack, lock Scott Barrett replaces Joel Everson and flanks Luke Whitelock and Matt Todd return in the back-row.
Further back, Willi Heinz swaps with Mitchell Drummond and the former skippers the XV, with Patrick Osborne at full-back in place of Mo’unga.
Meanwhile, Otago coach Tony Brown has also made seven changes to his line-up as a busy upcoming schedule of three games in eleven days sees him rotate his playing squad.
Marshall Suckling, Nick Ealey, Naulia Dawai, Jackson Hemopo, Hisa Sasagi and Sam Anderson-Heather all come into the starting XV, with Jayden Spence moving to centre.
Liam Coltman and TJ Ioane make do with bench spots.
Otago: 15 Trent Renata, 14 Marshall Suckling, 13 Jayden Spence, 12 Teihorangi Walden, 11 Fa’asiu Fuatai, 10 Hayden Parker, 9 Nick Ealey, 8 Charlie O’Connell, 7 James Lentjes, 6 Naulia Dawai, 5 Tom Franklin, 4 Jackson Hemopo, 3 Hisa Sasagi, 2 Sam Anderson-Heather, 1 Aki Seiuli.
Replacements: 16 Liam Coltman, 17 Donald Brighouse, 18 Joe Latta, 19 TJ Ioane, 20 Lee Allan, 21 Josh Renton, 22 Peter Breen.
Canterbury: 15 Patrick Osborne, 14 Rob Thompson, 13 Jack Goodhue, 12 Adam Whitelock, 11 Milford Keresoma, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Willi Heinz (c), 8 Nasi Manu, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Luke Whitelock, 5 Matt Symons, 4 Scott Barrett, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Ben Funnell, 1 Alex Hodgman.
Replacements: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Siate Tokolahi, 18 Joel Everson, 19 Tom Sanders, 20 Mitchell Drummond, 21 Luteru Laulala, 22 Nathaniel Apa.
Date: Thursday, September 4
Kick-off: 19:35 local (08:35 BST, 07:35 GMT)
Venue: Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin
Referee: Richard Kelly