After spending a month on the sidelines with a knee injury, TJ Perenara will have the opportunity to stake a late claim on an All Blacks spot against the Reds.

The Hurricanes halfback returned in a bench role last week in the win over the Blues but will return to the starting side on Friday night with the chance to prove he's fit and ready for international duty next month.

The All Blacks squad for the June test series against France is set to be named on Sunday, and Perenara was expected to be selected if fit.

His return was one of a number of changes to the run-on 15, with Jordie Barrett returning at fullback, pushing Nehe Milner-Skudder to the wing and Julian Savea to the bench.


In the midfield, Peter Umaga-Jensen will make his debut in the No 12 jersey with Ngani Laumape being rested.

In the pack, Blade Thompson gets his first start of the year at No 8, while Michael Fatialofa starts at lock ahead of Vaea Fifita.

Fifita, who suffered a head knock against the Blues, will fill a spot on the bench.

The Hurricanes go into Friday night's match looking to notch their tenth straight win, while the Reds will hope to bounce back from a thrashing at the hands of the Sunwolves in Japan last week.

It has been a tough year for the Brad Thorn-coach Australian side.

Through 14 weeks of the competition, the Reds have scored the fewest points (198) and the fewest tries (23). The Hurricanes, on the other hand, have scored the third-highest points (353) and tries (53).

Hurricanes: Jordie Barrett, Nehe Milner-Skudder, Matt Proctor, Peter Umaga-Jensen, Ben Lam, Beauden Barrett, TJ Perenara, Blade Thompson, Ardie Savea, Reed Prinsep, Sam Lousi, Michael Fatialofa, Jeff Toomaga-Allen, Ricky Riccitelli, Toby Smith. Reserves: James O'Reilly, Chris Eves, Ben May, Vaea Fifita, Brad Shields, Jamie Booth, Jackson Garden-Bachop, Julian Savea.

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