The Blues will showcase a reshuffled backline on Friday night as they attempt to arrest their defensive woes and get their season back on track with a crucial win against the Waratahs at Eden Park.
Following a horror loss to the Chiefs last week, Blues head coach Pat Lam has rung the changes with Isaia Toeava moving from fullback to centre, where he will partner Jamie Helleur who has replaced Michael Hobbs at second five eighths.
The Official Blues website reports that Paul Williams resumes his favoured position of fullback and Anthony Tuitavake shifts to the wing to replace Rene Ranger who drops to the bench.
All Blacks prop Tony Woodcock is still suffering from an ear infection and will not feature in the starting 22, with Tevita Mailau starting his third consecutive game at prop.
Justin Collins has also failed to overcome a hamstring strain as Onosa’i Auva’a is promoted to the starting team with Peter Saili on the bench.
The starting team for Friday’s game is:
15 Paul Williams, 14 Anthony Tuitavake, 13 Isaia Toeava, 12 Jamie Helleur, 11 Joe Rokocoko, 10 Jimmy Gopperth, 9. Taniela Moa, 8 Jerome Kaino, 7 Onosai’i Auva’a, 6 Chris Lowrey, 5 Ali Williams, 4 Kurtis Haiu, 3 John Afoa, 2 Keven Mealamu (Capt), 1 Tevita Mailau.
Reserves: 16 Tom McCartney, 17 Charlie Faumunia, 18 Anthony Boric, 19 Peter Saili, 20 Chris Smylie, 21 Michael Hobbs, 22 Rene Ranger.Tweet