5 May 2017

Charlie Ngati back for Chiefs after head knock

7:53 am on 5 May 2017

Chiefs midfielder Charlie Ngati will make his long awaited return to Super Rugby tomorrow when

his side takes on the Reds in New Plymouth.

Chiefs midfielder Charlie Ngati is fit for the Hurricanes match.

Chiefs midfielder Charlie Ngati Photo: Photosport

Ngatai ,26, will play his first game almost a year to the day since a head knock against the Highlanders left him with long-term concussion symptoms, placing his career at risk.

A one-cap All Black, the Taranaki ace was one of 2016's standout performers in midfield and likely would've played more Tests.

Instead, Ngatai has slowly worked his way back to full health and fitness, ticking off the final boxes with three club rugby appearances.

He's one of eight changes to the Chiefs' starting line-up, with Brodie Retallick and Michael Leitch recalled to action and Mitchell Brown switched to the blindside to make way for Sam Cane at number seven.

Tawera Kerr-Barlow is back at halfback after overcoming concussion and will partner Aaron Cruden in the halves, while midfielder Anton Lienert-Brown slots in outside Ngatai at outside centre.

James Lowe and Toni Pulu are on the wings, in what will make for a dynamic outside back combination alongside Damien McKenzie.

On the bench, Test hooker Nathan Harris has been named for what could be his first Chiefs game in 10 months, having torn his ACL in an All Blacks training session last August.