Super Rugby: Chiefs v Melbourne Rebels preview
Last Updated: 12/04/14 7:51am
Gareth Anscombe: gets chance at fly-half for the Chiefs
The Chiefs are looking to get back to winning ways against Melbourne Rebels on Saturday.
Now back at home after a defeat to the Force was backed up by two draws in South Africa, Dave Rennie's men need an 80-minute performance.
Sluggish starts have been the Chiefs' problem and have led to a raft of changes - both in personnel and positionally - in the team to face the Rebels.
Gareth Anscombe steps in at fly-half for the injured Aaron Cruden, Augustine Pulu is retained ahead of All Black scrum-half Tawera Kerr-Barlow, while Bundee Aki makes his 2014 debut as Tom Marshall moves to full-back.
In a pre-planned move, Liam Messam is rested from the starting line-up but is on the bench, meaning Kane Thompson, Sam Cane and Tanerau Latimer form the back row.
The Rebels, who prop up the Australian conference on eleven points from six Super Rugby games this season, have made one change to the starting XV on duty during the 33-30 defeat at the Highlanders last weekend.
Flanker Colby Fainga'a is fit to return on the blindside, relegating Sean McMahon relegated to the bench. Utility back Tom Kingston has also recovered from injury and replaces Alex Rokobaro among the replacements.
Lock Hugh Pyle will become the first player to make 50 Super Rugby appearances for the fourth-year franchise.
Last year's meeting saw a high-scoring affair that the Chiefs won 39-33, with Anscombe scoring a hat-trick from full-back.
Chiefs: 15 Marshall, 14 Nanai-Williams, 13 Horrell, 12 Aki, 11 Muliaina, 10 Anscombe, 9 Pulu; 1 Mackintosh, 2 Marshall, 3 Tameifuna, 4 Fitzgerald, 5 Retallick, 6 Latimer, 7 Crane, 8 Thompson
Replacements: 16 Harris, 17 Manu, 18 Hohneck, 19 Filipo, 20 Messam, 21 Kerr-Barlow, 22 Lienert-Brown, 23 Payne
Melbourne Rebels: 15 Woodward, 14 Sau, 13 Ellison, 12 Inman, 11 English, 10 Hegarty, 9 Stirzaker; 1 Smith, 2 Horie, 3 Weeks, 4 Pyle, 5 Jones, 6 Fainga'a, 7 Fuglistaller, 8 Higginbotham (capt)
Replacements: 16 Leafa, 17 Ah-Nau, 18 Alo-Emilie, 19 Neville, 20 McMahon, 21 Burgess, 22 Kingston, 23 Roberts
Super Rugby 2014 Round 9
New Zealand legend Brad Thorn looks set to miss the rest of the season with the Highlanders after tearing his bicep.
Israel Folau fears he could be out of action for as long as six months because of his throat injury.
Lwazi Mvovo scored the only try as the Sharks beat the Lions 25-12 to go back to the top of the Super Rugby standings.