Wellington Lions head coach Chris Gibbes has again named a largely settled squad to face Manawatu in their Mitre 10 Cup crossover match at Palmerston North's Central Energy Trust Arena on Sunday.
Gibbes has made five changes to the starting XV which helped the Lions to a convincing 53-12 win over Counties Manukau in Pukekohe last round.
Flanker Vaea Fifita was originally selected to start but has been called into the All Blacks for their tour of Argentina and South Africa. He has been replaced by Galu Taufale while there are two more changes in the pack.
The tight five remains largely the same, the exception coming at loosehead prop where Tolu Fahamokioa returns with the promising Xavier Numia moving to the bench.
The experienced Thomas Waldrom returns to the starting side in the only other change to the pack.
Wing Losi Filipo has been given an opportunity to start on the right wing which sees Ben Lam switch to the left while Thomas Umaga-Jensen comes into the midfield in the only changes to the backline that functioned well in Pukekohe.
Gibbes said the squad had been able to put in some really positive work given the eight-day gap they have had between matches and he hoped that would translate into some equally pleasing work on the field on Sunday.
"We are still giving a number of guys the opportunity to push for starting spots and the competition within the squad has been really healthy," Gibbes added.
"I think we are working well to where we want to be but we understand the challenge Manawatu will provide playing at their home. They traditionally play very well against Wellington but we're excited about the prospect of trying to continue to raise the level at which we are playing."
Kick-off is 4.35pm.
The Wellington Lions squad to meet Manawatu is:
15 Wes Goosen (Old Boys University)
14 Losi Filipo (Petone)
13 Matt Proctor (Oriental-Rongotai) (c)
12 Thomas Umaga-Jensen (Wainuiomata)
11 Ben Lam (Tawa)
10 Jackson Garden-Bachop (Northern United)
9 Kemara Hauiti-Parapara (Tawa)
8 Thomas Waldrom (Avalon)
7 Mateaki Kafatolu (Petone)
6 Galu Taufale (Poneke)
5 Isaia Walker-Leawere (Poneke)
4 James Blackwell (Petone)
3 Jeff To'omaga-Allen (Marist St Pats)
2 Asafo Aumua (Avalon)
1 Tolu Fahamokioa (Tawa)
16 James O'Reilly (Hutt Old Boys Marist)
17 Xavier Numia (Oriental-Rongotai)
18 Joel Hintz (Old Boys University)
19 Will Mangos (Old Boys University)
20 Greg Foe (Poneke)
21 Sheridan Rangihuna (Hutt Old Boys Marist)
22 Peter Umaga-Jensen (Wainuiomata)
23 Trent Renata (Oriental-Rongotai)