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Old heads and fresh faces will combine for the Highlanders when they play the French Barbarians in Invercargill tomorrow.
Coach Aaron Mauger has a mix of experienced campaigners that will be rewarded with game time and another complement of youngsters that are eager to play their first match in Highlanders’ colours.
“It is a great opportunity to have that mixture of the old and the young – the guys that are going to be the future of the Highlanders,” Mauger said.
“It is an exciting opportunity for some of our young guys to play their first game for the Highlanders in Paripari Parkinson and Thomas Umaga-Jensen.
“They’re two guys that have worked really hard throughout the year and they have really earned that opportunity to get among it.
“Guy Miller plays his first game for the side this year and it is a good opportunity for Guy.”
The Highlanders locking stocks epitomise the side’s mix of youth and experience.
Parkinson (21) will lock the scrum with 36-year-old Alex Ainley.
Elliot Dixon, James Lentjes and Josh Dickson form a handy backup loose forward trio in the absence of Liam Squire, Luck Whitelock and the rested Dillon Hunt.