The Tasman Makos coaches and management have named a squad of 28 players to contest the 2017 Mitre 10 Cup Premiership. The team is split between 16 forwards and 12 backs.
There is a good balance of experience – 16 players with Super Rugby caps – and youth, with 3 new faces.
The team will be coached by Leon MacDonald with assistance from Leo Crowley, Andrew Goodman and Greg Somerville. The team manager is Martyn Vercoe.
Hurricanes sign Finlay Christie for 2 seasons
Andrew Makalio (Harlequins - 11 Makos caps), Ti'i Paulo (Renwick -9)
Ryan Coxon (Waikato - *), Siosiua Halanukonuka (Highlanders - 38), Kane Hames (Chiefs - 14), Tom Hill (Stoke - 1), Tim Perry (Crusaders - 51)LOCKS
Alex Ainley (Highlanders - 80), Pari Pari Parkinson (Stoke - 3), Quinten Strange (Crusaders - 11)BACK ROW
Ethan Blackadder (Nelson – 9), Vernon Fredericks (Crusaders / Moutere - 46), Shannon Frizell (Marist – 12), Pete Samu (Crusaders - 29), Liam Squire (Highlanders - 38), Jordan Taufua (Crusaders – 10)HALF BACKS
Finlay Christie (Chiefs - 10), Billy Guyton (Blues - 42), FIRST - FIVES
Mitchell Hunt (Crusaders - 12), Tim O'Malley (Waitohi - 1)MID-FIELD BACKS
Levi Aumua (Kahurangi *), David Havili (Crusaders - 31), Trael Joass (Wanderers - 11), Alex Nankivell (Chiefs - 15) OUTSIDE BACKS
Tima Faingaanuku (Nelson - 8), Will Jordan (Christchurch *), Viliami Lolohea (Harlequins - 13), James Lowe (Chiefs - 37).
(* = new cap)
The team also features two All Blacks – back rower Liam Squire and prop Kane Hames, three NZ Under 20’s representatives – prop Ryan Coxon, winger Tima Faingaanuku and fullback Will Jordan – and NZ Sevens back Trael Joass.
Two former Makos – hooker Ti’i Paulo (2006) and flanker Jordan Taufua (2012) – return to the fold this season.