Maguire confirms changes ahead of Christchurch Test

New Zealand Coach Michael Maguire has confirmed both Shaun Johnson and Brandon Smith will return for the Kiwis this Saturday as they take on Great Britain in their second Test match at Orangetheory Stadium in Christchurch.

After the pair sat out the Kiwis' tight win over the Lions in Auckland last week, an injury to Kieran Foran has opened the door for Johnson to return in the halves alongside captain Benji Marshall while the pending birth of Kenny Bromwich's child will see Brandon Smith return at hooker in a reshuffle for the side.

Kodi Nikorima — who featured admirably at hooker for New Zealand last week — moves back to the interchange bench in place of Jahrome Hughes, who drops back to the reserves alongside Bromwich. Kevin Proctor is the new face on the bench, marking his return to the national side 12 months since his last appearance.

New Zealand are otherwise unchanged for the clash as they seek their first series win against Great Britain since 1998 in their final Test match of 2019.


NEW ZEALAND

1. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck (NZ Warriors)
2. Ken Maumalo (NZ Warriors)
3. Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad (Canberra Raiders)
4. Joseph Manu (Sydney Roosters)
5. Jamayne Isaako (Brisbane Broncos)
6. Shaun Johnson (Cronulla Sharks)
7. Benji Marshall, capt. (Wests Tigers)
8. Zane Tetevano (Sydney Roosters)
9. Brandon Smith (Melbourne Storm)
10. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves (Sydney Roosters)
11. Briton Nikora (Cronulla Sharks)
12. Corey Harawira-Naera (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)
13. Joseph Tapine (Canberra Raiders)

Interchange:
14. Kodi Nikorima (Brisbane Broncos)
15. Kevin Proctor (Gold Coast Titans)
16. Leeson Ah Mau (NZ Warriors)
17. Adam Blair (NZ Warriors)
18. Jahrome Hughes (Melbourne Storm)
19. Braden Hamlin-Uele (Cronulla Sharks)
20. Kenny Bromwich (Melbourne Storm)
21. Bailey Simonsson (Canberra Raiders)
22. Isaiah Papali'i (NZ Warriors)

Coach: Michael Maguire