KSA Shark ©

Lam rotates the Blues again

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :In the news, Super Rugby on 10 Mar 2011 at 06:46
Tagged with : ,

Blues coach Pat Lam has continued to rotate his team, this week dropping All Blacks John Afoa and Alby Mathewson for this weekend’s game against the Western Force in Perth.

Stuff.co.nz reports that Lam has brought back some of his big guns who started the game against the Lions from the bench last Saturday, including Keven Mealamu, Anthony Boric, Daniel Braid and Rene Ranger.

But once again he has shied away from starting his best 15, choosing to start Charlie Faumuina at tighthead prop and Toby Morland at halfback.

One enforced change Lam has had to make is starting Chris Lowrey at No 8 for Peter Saili, who took a head knock against the Lions.

“Peter had to go through the concussion protocols when we first arrived in Perth,” Lam explained.

“He wasn’t a hundred percent and couldn’t train with us fully so we certainly didn’t want to take any risks, particularly when you have quality like Chris available.

“Chris started our first two games as well so it was a no-brainer for us to put him back in there and give Peter some more time to recover from quite a heavy knock last week.”

Lam has chosen to go with Luke McAlister at first-five again for the game to be played at 12.05am Sunday New Zealand time and it will be interesting to see how his combination with Morland works out as they’ve never played together before.

“Toby will get an opportunity this week, he’s a good team man,” said Lam.

“He’s very experienced and has played a lot of Super Rugby so I’m sure he’ll be looking forward to getting his first start for the Blues.”

As for the selection of Faumuina, who has largely been used as an impact player over his Super Rugby career, Lam said he has plenty of faith in the Aucklander’s ability.

“People have seen a glimpse of what he can do when he’s come on this year so it’s a good opportunity for him,” he said.

“Taking into consideration the heat and travel and particularly how tough it is up in the front row we’re fortunate to have quality like Faumuina coming in to relieve the pressure on the All Black front row who have played all three games this season.”

Blues team: 15. Isaia Toeava, 14. Josevata Rokocoko, 13. Jared Payne, 12. Benson Stanley, 11. Rene Ranger, 10. Luke McAlister, 9. Toby Morland, 8. Chris Lowrey, 7. Daniel Braid, 6. Jerome Kaino, 5. Ali Williams, 4. Anthony Boric, 3. Charlie Faumuina, 2. Keven Mealamu (captain), 1. Tony Woodcock.
Reserves: Tom McCartney, John Afoa, Kurtis Haiu, Luke Braid, Alby Mathewson, Stephen Brett, Sherwin Stowers.


  • I’m still not sure it was rotation. I think it was more a case of taking the Lions lightly. A BIG GAMBLE that paid of in the end. 🙁

    If he is really rotating then we will se more changes next week then I will believe it.

  • Comment 1, posted at 10.03.11 06:51:51 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • I thought Lam played his bench perfectly last week in trying to combat the percieved altitude factor. The bench saw them through nicely.

  • Comment 2, posted at 10.03.11 07:17:23 by Speed7 Reply
  • @Speed7 (Comment 2) : There is NOTHING percieved about the altitude factor.

  • Comment 3, posted at 10.03.11 07:20:26 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • Its not based on science is it ?

  • Comment 4, posted at 10.03.11 07:55:34 by Speed7 Reply
  • Lam is either very clever or very stupid. If this many rotations pays off in the long run, then he is actually clever, if it backfires well then he is an idiot 😈

  • Comment 5, posted at 10.03.11 08:42:18 by Jarson (AddicteD) Reply
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  • @Speed7 (Comment 4) : It is, actually. Why do you think you have to take oxygen when you climb Mount Everest. It’s the same thing but on a smaller scale.

  • Comment 6, posted at 10.03.11 09:12:16 by war1 Reply
  • @Speed7 (Comment 4) : The oxygen concentration is less at altitude, you can measure it. Teams which are based in the highveld adapt to deal with the conditions, you can also measure that and it has been proven over and over again.

  • Comment 7, posted at 10.03.11 09:16:33 by war1 Reply
  • Could be a clever move. With this long season some key players must be preserved for future more difficult challenges.

    Surely the Blues will have more than enough for the Force?
    Look for Rene Ranger to be replaced early in the second half as well . . .

  • Comment 8, posted at 10.03.11 09:26:56 by Original Champion Reply
    Original Pierre
  • Clearly Pat Lam learnt nothing from Graham Henry’s experiment back in 2007 :mrgreen:

  • Comment 9, posted at 10.03.11 09:56:37 by CS Reply

  • @war1 (Comment 7) :

    Trust the smart one in the Sharksworld family to shine through!! 😀

  • Comment 10, posted at 10.03.11 09:58:44 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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    Richard Ferguson
  • For me Jared Payne the outside centre has been the surprise package of the season. He’s someone who never really impressed me as a Crusader but his form this yr suggests he’s one of the most underrated players in NZ rugby.

  • Comment 11, posted at 10.03.11 12:14:56 by beet Reply
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