Blues vs. Chiefs



  • Strong Blues side to battle Chiefs

    24 May 2017

    The Blues have named a near full-strength side for their final round-robin game at Eden Park, when they take on the Chiefs on Friday night.

    All Black Patrick Tuipulotu returns to the starting line-up, while Michael Collins also returns at fullback after both came off the bench for the match against the Stormers in South Africa last weekend.

    The All Black prop Charlie Faumuina will make his 98th appearance for the Blues and is in superlative form this season, setting up two tries in the game against the Stormers.

    Two others will near milestones with winger Matt Duffie and prop Sione Mafileo playing their 19th games for the Blues, one cap away from their blazer games.

    Piers Francis will start at first-five after coming off with a head injury against the Stormers. Blues doctor Dr Stephen Kara confirmed that Francis had not developed any further symptoms in a range of regular testing under the protocol since including a full neurological exam and neuro-cognitive testing via SCAT scan. He further tested clear after a return to training and completed the other graduated protocol steps to play with no recurrence of any symptoms.

    There is interest in the potential debut of former New Zealand Under-20s player Stephen Perofeta, who is listed on the bench. He has been sidelined with an ankle injury for most of the season but returned to club rugby last weekend.

    Head Coach Tana Umaga said the team faced a significant test after the demanding one-off game in South Africa and he had adjusted their training to suit this week.

    “This is our final derby game of the regular season and I know the team will want to produce their best performance of the season. We need to produce an 80-minute performance across the board and ensure we are disciplined in that approach.”

    Players not available because of injury include Jerome Kaino (knee), Pauliasi Manu (calf), Matt Moulds (knee), Ihaia West (ankle) and Jimmy Tupou (hamstring).

    The match, which kicks off at 7.35pm, is the Barfoot & Thompson Charity round with fans invited to vote for their favoured charity who will receive the backing from the Blues Foundation Partner at halftime with a presentation by Blues legend Keven Mealamu.

    Get tickets here.

    The Blues team is:

    1 Ofa Tu’ungafasi, 2 James Parsons (c), 3 Charlie Faumuina, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu, 5 Scott Scrafton, 6 Steven Luatua, 7 Blake Gibson, 8 Akira Ioane; 9 Augustine Pulu, 10 Piers Francis, 11 Rieko Ioane, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 13. George Moala, 14 Matt Duffie, 15 Michael Collins.

    Replacements: 16 Hame Faiva, 17 Alex Hodgman, 18 Sione Mafileo, 19 Gerard Cowley-Tuioti, 20 Kara Pryor, 21 Sam Nock, 22 Stephen Perofeta, 23 TJ Faiane.



  • Shouldn't there be at least a week off after being knocked out and failing a concussion test?



  • @Tim Does seem like a loophole in the protocols, but if a suitably qualified medical practitioner clears you... Ultimately you can only make a diagnosis on whether they present with some sort of complication.



  • @antipodean said in Blues vs. Chiefs:

    @Tim Does seem like a loophole in the protocols, but if a suitably qualified medical practitioner clears you... Ultimately you can only make a diagnosis on whether they present with some sort of complication.

    There's the rub. Who is actually qualified to make a call for a five day turn around? I suspect that if you polled a panel of genuine experts then they would not be able to ethically make such a recommendation.

    This really seems like an area that warrants much caution.



  • Maybe it will be a late switch like Matt Todd last week and Perofeta will end up starting.

    Excellent to see Perofeta on the bench. Hope he gets some real decent minutes at 10. I quite like the idea of Nock, Perofeta and Faiane off the bench in the last 30 or so - that has potential. All 3 players should be involved in all the of the remaining Blues games this year.

    On the other hand Collins is starting and Nanai isn't even in the 23 - ridiculous.

    Hopefully the rain stays away and its another classic NZ derby.



  • @KiwiMurph said in Blues vs. Chiefs:

    On the other hand Collins is starting and Nanai isn't even in the 23 - ridiculous.

    I can't believe it took four replies before that was mentioned!



  • @Frye the only surprise is that people are surprised. Nanai has had a bum deal all year. If he wants game time he could pop 50 minutes down SH1, i certainly wouldn't complain



  • @mariner4life said in Blues vs. Chiefs:

    @Frye the only surprise is that people are surprised. Nanai has had a bum deal all year. If he wants game time he could pop 50 minutes down SH1, i certainly wouldn't complain

    We've all already agreed that he's going to the Canes next year.



  • @No-Quarter yea you guys are really battling for outside backs alright...



  • @mariner4life Well they do have to play Wes Goosen for some reason.



  • @Tim you know he would be first choice at the Blues...



  • @mariner4life We will try anyone at 1st 5.



  • @mariner4life said in Blues vs. Chiefs:

    @No-Quarter yea you guys are really battling for outside backs alright...

    To be fair, none of their current lot did anything with the front foot ball they received all night against the Crusaders.



  • Gallagher Chiefs team named to take on the Blues in Battle of the Bombays rematch

    The final seeding order of the tightly contested New Zealand Conference is still anybody’s guess just four rounds shy of the 2017 Investec Super Rugby playoffs. What can be guaranteed however, is that come 7.35pm on Friday evening, two highly motivated and courageous kiwi sides will throw everything at each other in the hopes of securing a win which could prove season-defining.

    Gallagher Chiefs head coach Dave Rennie has made three changes to the starting fifteen who narrowly lost 31-24 to the BNZ Crusaders in Fiji last Friday. There’s just one change to the forward pack with relentless number 8 Liam Messam contributing 156 caps of experience to the starting lineup.

    The remaining two changes effect the backline, with Johnny Faauli returning to the playing 23 to start at second five-eighth. The potent mid-fielder reunites with Anton Lienert-Brown who moves to centre for Fridays evening’s unmissable derby match.

    The Gallagher Chiefs team to play the Blues at 7.35pm this Friday 26 May at Eden Park:

    1 Kane Hames (19)
    2 Nathan Harris (25)
    3 Nepo Laulala (8)
    4 Dominic Bird (22)
    5 Brodie Retallick (81)
    6 Mitchell Brown (11)
    7 Sam Cane (co-captain) (90)
    8 Liam Messam (156)
    9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow (77)
    10 Aaron Cruden (co-captain) (83)
    11 James Lowe (47)
    12 Johnny Faauli (4)
    13 Anton Lienert-Brown (35)
    14 Tim Nanai-Williams (81)
    15 Damian McKenzie (44)

    RESERVES:
    16 Hika Elliot (115)
    17 Siegfried Fisi’ihoi (21)
    18 Atu Moli (21)
    19 Taleni Seu (28)
    20 Lachlan Boshier (13)
    21 Jonathan Taumateine (4)
    22 Solomon Alaimalo (4)
    23 Shaun Stevenson (18)

    () = Gallagher Chiefs caps in brackets

    Unavailable for selection: Brad Weber, Mitchell Graham, Glen Fisiiahi, Liam Polwart, Charlie Ngatai, Sam McNicol, Stephen Donald and Toni Pulu.

    The Gallagher Chiefs return to FMG Stadium Waikato to take on the Waratahs at the earlier kickoff time of 5.05pm next Saturday 3 June. Rising Chiefs region rugby talent will be on show in the curtain raiser, with Hamilton Boys High School playing Rotorua Boys High School in the University of Waikato Chiefs Cup Final. Tickets to next Saturday’s Round 15 fixture between the Gallagher Chiefs and the Waratahs can be purchased from ticketdirect.co.nz or 0800 4 CHIEFS

    http://www.chiefs.co.nz/news/news/latest-news/452-gallagher-chiefs-team-named-to-take-on-the-blues-in-battle-of-the-bombays-rematch



  • no comment about the unavailability of Ngatai...

    If this is his headaches back, you'd have to think the writing is on the wall?





  • @taniwharugby said in Blues vs. Chiefs:

    no comment about the unavailability of Ngatai...

    If this is his headaches back, you'd have to think the writing is on the wall?

    Rennie already commented a couple days ago. He's recovered but they're handling him with kid gloves, so are leaving him out of this game.



  • Probably disciplinary, the way he keeps winking at everybody...



  • @Unco I dont read every article 😉

    ONly read the team naming one and then the one posted above....



  • I think it's safe to say that Melani was a Feeney pick last year.

    I'm not a fan of the SBW-Moala midfield. Stylistically, they could be as bad a match as it gets. With a pairing like this, all I expect is individualism. Unless someone upskills or changes their playing style, this combination has little room to grow into anything.