Richard Buckman has gained early reward for his strong debut for the Highlanders by being elevated to their full Super Rugby squad.
Buckman, who impressed on the right wing in the Highlanders' upset win over the Blues in Dunedin last Saturday, has been confirmed to replace Buxton Popoalii who is having heart surgery later this month.
Buckman, the Hawke's Bay utility who headed south seeking more opportunities at this level after getting little exposure with the Hurricanes, steps up from the Highlanders wider training group.
He looks set to get another opportunity against the Chiefs in Hamilton on Saturday night.
The Highlanders have an injury blow out wide with big left wing Patrick Osborne been sidelined with an ankle injury from the win over the Blues.
The Highlanders will also be without experienced lock Brad Thorn who injured ribs in the season-opener and is out for around four weeks.
The Highlanders name their team to play the Chiefs tomorrow.
- Fairfax Media
What winning margin and team are you tipping for the Super Rugby final?