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Blackwell, Fifita to bring up 50 games against Tasman

James Blackwell and Vaea Fifita will bring up 50 caps for the Lions, when the team plays Tasman Mako at Porirua Park this weekend.

It’s the first time the premiership side has hosted a game away from Athletic Park or Sky Stadium in NPC history.

Blackwell, who has been named acting captain in the absence of Du’Plessis Kirifi says it’s an honour to be leading the team for such a landmark fixture.

“Playing at Porirua Park means playing in front of family, friends and the communities we represent. We wouldn’t be where we are today without the support we get from clubs.”

Head coach, Leo Crowley, has made just two changes to the side which beat Counties Manukau 53 – 20 in South Auckland last weekend; bringing Kaliopasi Uluilakepa and Taine Plumtree onto the bench to cover injuries.

Crowley says the team is looking forward to taking their campaign on the road.

We’re expecting a tough game as both teams will be wanting to put on a show. It’s an exciting fixture for us at Porirua, as we get to play last year’s winners at a local club ground where we have a real opportunity to connect with supporters.”

The Lions team to face Tasman at Porirua Park on Saturday is:
1 Xavier Numia
2 James O’Reilly
3 Alex Fidow
4 James Blackwell
5 Naitoa Ah Kuoi
6 Vaea Fifita
7 Mateaki Kafatolu
8 Teariki Ben-Nicholas
9 Connor Collins
10 Jackson Garden-Bachop
11 Julian Savea
12 Vince Aso
13 Billy Proctor
14 Wes Goosen
15 Ruben Love
16 Tyrone Thompson
17 Morgan Poi
18 Kaliopasi Uluilakepa
19 Taine Plumtree
20 Sam Smith
21 Kemara Hauiti-Parapara
22 Aidan Morgan
23 Pepesana Patafilo

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