Chiefs v Blues



  • Blues named.
     
    Tuipulotu out, Kaino still out (returning next week possibly), Mayhew out.
     
    On the good side - Francis is passed fit so Blues name the same backline for the first time this season. Hopefully combos start to gel a bit after some promising signs last week.
     
    Ioane still on the bench and it looks like Ofa T is now covering tighthead on the bench - similar to last week - he did look better at tight head off the bench last week.
     
    I'll be happy if the Blues can get a losing bonus point out of this to be honest. Blues defence should keep them close enough for a while but I suspect the Blues problems scoring points will see Chiefs pull away in the second half.
     
    Blues team.
     
    1 - Prattley
    2 - Parsons
    3 - Faumuina
    4 - Matenga
    5 - Bekhuis
    6 - Edwards
    7 - Gibson
    8 - Luatua
    9 - Hall
    10 - West
    11 - Li
    12 - Francis
    13 - Ranger
    14 - Rieko Ioane
    15 - Visinia
     
    Bench
     
    16 - Q MacDonald
    17 - N Waa
    18 - Ofa T
    19 - Akira Ioane
    20 - Kara Pryor
    21 - Guyton
    22 - McGahan
    23 - Moala
     
     
    EDIT - Jamie Nutbrown is referee - another below par reffing performance is on the cards for a Blues game.



  • I can see the Chiefs targeting Francis on defence ...



  • The Chiefs will give this Blues side a pounding. Tana really needed to inject the likes of Moala and A Ioane into the starting side. I mean can you really see the likes of Francis slicing his way through the Chiefs defence. I don't think so.
     
    The balance of that loose forward trio doesn't look right either. I would of had Luatua on the blind and Akira at 8. It just lacks pace for mine.
     
    Chiefs 13+



  • I'd have expected Moala to at least start on the wing.



  • I'd be happy with a losing bonus point too, but even that would be a tough ask given the Chiefs form at the moment. I hope all the traveling the Chiefs have done so far catches up to them this week, but I just can't see that happening.
     
    If we're to win or be competitive, we have to play a similar game plan to the one we played against the Highlanders.



  • The Chiefs will give this Blues side a pounding. Tana really needed to inject the likes of Moala and A Ioane into the starting side. I mean can you really see the likes of Francis slicing his way through the Chiefs defence. I don't think so.
     
    The balance of that loose forward trio doesn't look right either. I would of had Luatua on the blind and Akira at 8. It just lacks pace for mine.
     
    Chiefs 13+

    I disagree on Francis. The Blues have ball runners - Francis isn't there to slice through - he's there as a 2nd pivot to help put these ball runners into space and take the pressure of West as well as communicate and organise defensively - and last weekend was a good start. I'm not convinced by Francis in the long term but based on the squad at the moment I can see why he is there.



    1. Mitchell Graham (17)2. Hika Elliot (92)3. Atu Moli (3)4. Dominic Bird*5. Brodie Retallick (61)6. Maama Vaipulu (16)7. Sam Cane (71) co-captain8. Michael Leitch (18)9. Brad Weber (30)10. Aaron Cruden (62) co-captain11. James Lowe (27)12. Charlie Ngatai (37)13. Anton Lienert-Brown (14)14. Shaun Stevenson (2)15. Damian McKenzie (22)RESERVES:16. Rhys Marshall (28)17. Siate Tokolahi (23)18. Siegfried Fisi’ihoi (2)19. Taleni Seu (6)20. Sam Henwood (1)21. Tawera Kerr-Barlow (60)22. Seta Tamanivalu (12)23. Sam McNicol (3)


  • I think if Francis was outside a 10 who was running things better, he might be OK, but West probably isn't pulling the strings well enough.



  • The Gallagher Chiefs team to play the Blues is:
    15. Damian McKenzie, 14. Shaun Stevenson, 13. Anton Lienert-Brown, 12. Charlie Ngatai, 11. James Lowe, 10. Aaron Cruden, 9. Brad Weber, 8. Michael Leitch, 7. Sam Cane, 6. Maama Vaipulu, 5. Brodie Retallick, 4. Dominic Bird, 3. Atu Moli, 2. Hika Elliot, 1. Mitchell Graham.
    RESERVES: 16. Rhys Marshall, 17. Siate Tokolahi, 18. Siegfried Fisi’ihoi, 19. Taleni Seu, 20. Sam Henwood, 21. Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 22. Seta Tamanivalu, 23. Sam McNicol.



  • Blues midfield defence was a lot better last week with Francis there.



  • The Blues aren't that bad, beat the Landers (who get a heap of love on here) and narrowly lost to the Canes. The Chiefs are on fire but this isn't an easy game (like, say, the Farce at home). They will have to play well to win.



  • The Gallagher Chiefs team to play the Blues is:
    15. Damian McKenzie, 14. Shaun Stevenson, 13. Anton Lienert-Brown, 12. Charlie Ngatai, 11. James Lowe, 10. Aaron Cruden, 9. Brad Weber, 8. Michael Leitch, 7. Sam Cane, 6. Maama Vaipulu, 5. Brodie Retallick, 4. Dominic Bird, 3. Atu Moli, 2. Hika Elliot, 1. Mitchell Graham.
    RESERVES: 16. Rhys Marshall, 17. Siate Tokolahi, 18. Siegfried Fisi’ihoi, 19. Taleni Seu, 20. Sam Henwood, 21. Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 22. Seta Tamanivalu, 23. Sam McNicol.

    Oh! Retallick and Bird are back!! So now we have forwards and backs! 
     
    We Win!



  • I had a feeling these games are always closer than everyone expects, so i had a quick squiz at the results.
     
    Over the last 3 years, where it has been generally accepted that the Blues have been shit, they have played 6 times. The Chiefs are 6-0.
     
    BUT, the average score is 23-16 (which is the exact score finished at twice).



  • I can see us giving the Chiefs more of a run that people think but we'll still go down 33-20 or something like that. Seeing Sam Prattley there is a bit cringeworthy too. He's like the guy who never goes away.



  • The Gallagher Chiefs team to play the Blues is:
    15. Damian McKenzie, 14. Shaun Stevenson, 13. Anton Lienert-Brown, 12. Charlie Ngatai, 11. James Lowe, 10. Aaron Cruden, 9. Brad Weber, 8. Michael Leitch, 7. Sam Cane, 6. Maama Vaipulu, 5. Brodie Retallick, 4. Dominic Bird, 3. Atu Moli, 2. Hika Elliot, 1. Mitchell Graham.
    RESERVES: 16. Rhys Marshall, 17. Siate Tokolahi, 18. Siegfried Fisi’ihoi, 19. Taleni Seu, 20. Sam Henwood, 21. Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 22. Seta Tamanivalu, 23. Sam McNicol.

    BBBR, Bird and TKB back, Moli gets a start and Allardice gets a deserved rest. I like.
     
    If Henwood's on the bench, I guess they're planning on giving Cane a rest if it's a blow-out score like the last two ones? Otherwise I don't really see the point putting the fourth choice openside on the bench over Sanders.



  • As a blues fan, I have that sense that the Jaws music is playing in the background.... just building up to a shark eating our forward pack
     
    If we get anything out of this game but injuries I'll be happy.
     
    Fark, if we win, I'll get smashed.  There, I said it.



  • I can remember the days when the Blues used to be strong favourites in these clashes and the Chiefs used to rise to the occasion and make a game of it,cant see that happening with the Blues ,Im tipping it could get ugly, hope im wrong



  • BBBR, Bird being back should sure up the Chiefs scrum that was looking under real pressure last week.



  • I can remember the days when the Blues used to be strong favourites in these clashes and the Chiefs used to rise to the occasion and make a game of it,
    cant see that happening with the Blues ,
    Im tipping it could get ugly, hope im wrong

    yep - these clashes use to be our final - shit season, but at least we beat the Blues



  • BBBR, Bird being back should sure up the Chiefs scrum that was looking under real pressure last week.

    ...against a very strong pack and it didn't stop them thrashing the shit out of the opposition everywhere else on the park.
     
     
    Blues aren't half as bad as some are making them out to be. They are struggling to construct tries sure, and that is hampering them on the scoreboard but they are forcing turnovers, making metres, the lineout is working well.....
    The building blocks are all there and if they manage to put them together they can trouble anyone.
     
    The most telling Blues stat is the amount of tries they are scoring from turnover ball. They aren't transitioning from D to A with any bite. That is a confidence thing as much as anything. They slightly hesitate or look like they place themselves under pressure to do something with the ball.



  • well hopefully with minimal changes the Blues can start to get some continuity and partnerships going, as you say, they have the raw ingredients.



  • Prediction: All those changes will hurt the Chiefs momentum. Blues by 1 - 12.



  • Prediction: All those changes will hurt the Chiefs momentum. Blues by 1 - 12.

    Further to that prediction, this thread will be at 10 pages by this time next week. Full of Chiefs fans Crucial crying about refereeing decisions that went against them.



  • 'Discussing' not 'crying about' 😉



  • Prediction: All those changes will hurt the Chiefs momentum. Blues by 1 - 12.

    Yup, Chiefs are the underdogs going into this game.



  • To confirm the above - it is actually Jaimee Nutbrown's debut Super Rugby refereeing assignment - i'd much prefer Pollock in the middle and Nutbrown as AR (Pollock is AR for this game).



  • Who did he play for in Super Rugby? Highlanders? Did he have a turn with the Chiefs too?



  • Good point. According to Wikipedia Nutbrown played 22 times for the Chiefs between 06 and 08. Also played for the Crusaders (not the Highlanders).



  • To confirm the above - it is actually Jaimee Nutbrown's debut Super Rugby refereeing assignment - i'd much prefer Pollock in the middle and Nutbrown as AR (Pollock is AR for this game).

    Yeah. Ex-Crusaders and Chiefs. Stints with Canterbury and BOP.
     
    I know they don't do neutral refs these days but an ex player reffing his own franchise leaves things open for accusations of bias in both directions.



  • This sucks. It's his first gig and he will have to show just how nuetral he is by being kinder to the Blues than he would be to the Chiefs! Bloody excellent!



  • This sucks. It's his first gig and he will have to show just how nuetral he is by being kinder to the Blues than he would be to the Chiefs! Bloody excellent!

    Having seen Nutbrown ref ITM Cup I am more worried about his general ability than bias to be honest.



  • This sucks. It's his first gig and he will have to show just how nuetral he is by being kinder to the Blues than he would be to the Chiefs! Bloody excellent!

    I agree. It is unnecessarily difficult for the guy.
     
    Didn't he run touch in the Chiefs/Crusaders game? I think it was that game that Justin Marshall was laughing in the comms as Ellis went to give the touchie a mouthful and realised it was a former team mate.



  • Let's just take a minute to be thankful that Marshall never became a referee.



  • tug a jersey? red card. stand offside? not material, see it a million times a game.



  • Pretty big crowd expected, 14,000 presold for this one.



  • I can't see why Nutbrown should be liable to bias - it's not like any other refs have just appeared out of thin air! They all come from somewhere and were probably pretty passionate about rugby there which gave them an interest....



  • I can't see why Nutbrown should be liable to bias - it's not like any other refs have just appeared out of thin air! They all come from somewhere and were probably pretty passionate about rugby there which gave them an interest....

    I think it is more the perception of bias making things difficult that we are commenting on. Surely if he was to make a tough call favouring the Chiefs there would be comments made? Or maybe he will try too hard to not favour them.
     
    It is only because he has played at higher levels that he will get so much more focus compared to other refs



  • I can't see why Nutbrown should be liable to bias - it's not like any other refs have just appeared out of thin air! They all come from somewhere and were probably pretty passionate about rugby there which gave them an interest....

    Followign on from Crucial's response - it is like neutral refs.  Refs from NZ shouldn't be biased towards teh ABs, but they put in neutrals to avoid the appearnce of a potential conflict of interest.



  • just look at Justin Marshall and how he tries to appear impartial most of the time!



  • Further to that prediction, this thread will be at 10 pages by this time next week. Full of Chiefs fans Crucial crying about refereeing decisions that went against them.

    The irony of Cantabs ...


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