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Marshall Tipped To Be Crowd Favourite at Hurricanes vs Blues

28 January 2014

Marshall Tipped To Be Crowd Favourite at Pre-Seaon Opener Hurricanes vs. Blues

Come 3pm this Saturday all eyes will be centre field for the Super Rugby pre-season opener between the Hurricanes and Blues in Masterton.

Not only will eager fans be determined to see their favourite players up close and in the flesh at Memorial Park in Masterton but for many it will be an opportunity to see former league star Benji Marshall take his first side steps in Blues colours.

Blues coach Sir John Kirwan has confirmed that barring any injury this week, Marshall will take to the ground.

"We’ll probably play Benji in all three pre-season games in some capacity so that’ll be good and I'm sure people will enjoy that,” says Kirwan.

“He wants to play 10. Most 10s can cover a couple of positions but he’ll be looking to start off at 10, see how he goes and then maybe give him a bit of time at fullback."

Like all pre-season games Saturday’s match, organised by Tui and the Wairarapa Bush Rugby Union, will be an opportunity for both teams to test out their respective game plan, build combinations and test themselves at full speed.

"For us this year our big goal is to have a competitive extended squad so for some of the new boys and some of the guys that were around last year it’s a chance for them to put their hands up. Everyone’s going to get a game pre-season,” says Kirwan.

“Our All Blacks are back late so we’ll be playing everyone available and won’t be worrying about the result but we want to give everyone out there a bit of a crack so that we can start the season believing in the depth of our extended squad.”

Hurricanes coach Mark Hammett says his team has been working extremely hard with their pre-season training, so Saturday’s game will be a chance for them to put all of that hard work into practice.

“They’ve been training really well as a unit, and there’s also that competitiveness brewing between those in similar positions as well, which is always positive to see,” says Hammett.

“They’re all itching to get on the park and prove themselves, and we’re looking forward to seeing how things come together.”

Both Super Rugby franchises will name their teams later this week.

Gates for the pre-season game open at 12.30pm and the day’s festivities begin at 12.50pm with three Rugby Sevens clashes including one with a surprise twist. The Super Rugby game kicks off at 3pm and tickets are still available.

Tui has teamed up with key match day supporters to make the day possible including: Sharpes Stockfeed, PGG Wrightons, Trust House, Print Craft, Norwood, WBRFU, Cableprice, Wairarapa News and MoreFM.

Timeline for February 1st, 2014
12.30pm: Gates Open
12.50pm: Rugby Sevens games
3.00pm: Hurricanes Vs Blues
5.00pm: Close For GA
5.45pm: After-Match Speeches & Band in Tui Tent Village.

Available from Tui HQ, PGG Wrightson stores in the Wairarapa and Bottle-O stores in the Wairarapa or via

Price: General Admission $25 adults (13 years plus)
General Admission children (0-12 years) $15
Corporate Tickets $130


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