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Hurricanes seek a change of luck in Hamilton

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Lynn McConnell     14 Mar 2019     Getty Images

They knew that and having got a lot of things wrong when visiting Hamilton in the past they would be looking to get a lot of things right this time around, he said.

"If we do that reasonably well we're in with a chance. We don't play particularly well in Hamilton and that needs to change," he said.

As a result of the pounding the Hurricanes took up front in their 25-22 win over the Highlanders last weekend, changes have been made in the front row.

Plumtree has brought Toby Smith, who he said was probably their No.1 loosehead prop from a scrummaging perspective, back into the front row while Ben May had been given a starting role. May and Jeff Toomaga-Allen were being rotated all the time anyway and with Alex Fidow available again it was about keeping all guys fresh and interested.

"We're just looking for solutions. It obviously wasn't a good performance from us up front against the Highlanders. It's [about] working hard really. I know they've all been doing that.

"We know the battle is going to be hard up front again at the weekend against the Chiefs. Nothing changes for the group but I'm sure the Chiefs will be coming for us in that department," he said.

Vaea Fifita will start at lock as a chance to give Liam Mitchell a chance for a break after the rugby he had been playing so far. He said while Fifita had said he wanted extended time in the blindside flanker's position, he had been fine with this week's choice.

"Like any player he wants to know if it's performance-based or a decision, and where has the decision come from. I'm honest with him about that, he can play well at lock and well at six and that's always going to be good for him," Plumtree said.

The shoulder injury suffered by utility back Vince Aso was a concern as he could be out for several weeks.

"It does worry me a bit. It would be good to have some good news around the injury department, but it's Super Rugby, you squad is so important, that you have depth.

"What we'll see is we'll be relying on some young guys to do jobs for us. That will be great for the club in terms of gathering experience," he said.

That had already been seen from flanker Du'Plessis Kirifi and would also be seen from Billy Proctor and Peter Umaga-Jensen, he said.