The first of two matches this weekend that will have zero effect on the teams participating in the playoffs, so I am sure this game will be watched in a 10 minute highlights package, if at all.
The Blues have been struggling all season, but finally have their captain Keven Mealamu back in the front row to lead the team. Some of the players in the team will have only this week and next week to show what they have before squads will be selected ahead of the Rugby Championship, that starts in August.
For the Force, the same applies. They have a few Australian Internationals in their midst, and they will have this week and next to show their form ahead of the International season. Nathan Sharpe will also be winding down his illustrious career, and the Force are sure to want to send him off with a few good results.
Blues: 1. Tony Woodcock, 2. Keven Mealamu, 3. Tevita Mailau, 4. Liaki Moli, 5. Andrew Van der Heijden, 6. Steven Luatua, 7. Daniel Braid, 8. Luke Braid, 9. Piri Weepu, 10. Michael Hobbs, 11. Rene Ranger, 12. Ma’a Nonu, 13. Francis Saili, 14. Lachie Munro, 15. Charles Piutau.
Replacements: 16. Tom McCartney, 17. Angus Ta’avao, 18. Chris Lowrey, 19. Peter Saili, 20. Alby Mathewson, 21. Orene Ai’i, 22. Hadleigh Parkes.
Western Force: 1. Pek Cowan, 2. Nathan Charles, 3. Salesi Manu, 4. Toby Lynn, 5. Nathan Sharpe (c), 6. Richard Brown, 7. Angus Cottrell, 8. Lachlan McCaffery, 9. Brett Sheehan, 10. Ben Seymour, 11. Napolioni Nalaga, 12. Winston Stanley, 13. Will Tupou, 14. Nick Cummins, 15. Alfie Mafi.
Reserves: 16. Ben Whittaker, 17. Ruan Smith, 18. Ollie Atkins, 19. Anare Koliavu, 20. Josh Holmes, 21. Kyle Godwin, 22. Patrick Dellit
Referee: Andrew Lees
Assistant Ref 1:Glen Jackson
Assistant Ref 2:Sheldon Eden-Whaitiri
TMO : Ben Skeen