Super Rugby 2020: Warren Gatland sees Damian McKenzie as a fullback, not first-five

With the new Super Rugby season just two weeks away, new coach Warren Gatland's wasted no time stamping his mark on the Chiefs. 

For the first time in eight seasons, the franchise has done away with co-captains, with Sam Cane appointed as the sole leader of the side. 

Gatland's also sent a not-so-subtle message to the All Blacks, confirming Damian McKenzie will wear the No.15 jersey, despite the previous All Black regime grooming him as a first-five.

But Gatland believes he is giving McKenzie the best chance at achieving higher honours, come the international season. 

"Now that Ben Smith's gone, I think there might be an opportunity for him [McKenzie] at fullback, but we will see how he goes," Gatland said. 

The news isn't so good for loose forward Luke Jacobsen, who may not even be back in round three as first thought.

The loose forward continues to recover from the concussion issues that ruled him out of last year's Rugby World Cup.

Considering the Chiefs didn't win a match until round six in 2018, they'll hope their squad gets through the pre-season 'Battle of the Bombays' against the Blues unscathed on Thursday.

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