All Black duo start in Bloem
Bloemfontein - All Blacks Charlie Faumuina
and Patrick Tuipulotu will make their first starts of the season for the Blues when
they tackle the Cheetahs in a Super Rugby clash on Friday night.
Faumuina has come off the bench in both
games this season while Tuipulotu came on for his season debut in the second
half of the match last weekend against the Stormers in Cape Town.
According to the Blues’ official website, Tuipulotu
will start in place of Hayden Triggs who received a one match suspension
following his red card against the Stormers.
The Blues will start open side loose
forwards Brendon O’Connor and Luke Braid, who were both outstanding last
weekend, while Steven Luatua, who was replaced after receiving a shoulder
injury, will come off the bench as cover for both loose forward and lock.
There’s been a reshuffle in the backline
with Hamish Northcott moving to inside centre, Charles Piutau from fullback to outside
centre, and Melani Nanai - part of the wider training group - making his debut
on the right wing and Lolagi Visinia returning to fullback.
Added to the bench is replacement Simon
Hickey, coming in for Dan Bowden, who has returned home after re-aggravating
his foot injury.
The match will feature the 100th game for
the Blues for inspirational captain Jerome Kaino.
Kick-off for Friday’s clash at the Free
State Stadium is scheduled for 19:10.
15 Willie le Roux, 14 Cornal Hendricks, 13
Francois Venter, 12 Michael van der Spuy, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Joe Pietersen, 9
Sarel Pretorius, 8 Willie Britz, 7 Oupa Mohoje, 6 Jean Cook, 5 Francois Uys
(captain), 4 Carl Wegner, 3 Coenie Oosthuizen, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld, 1 Danie
Substitutes: 16 Stephan Coetzee, 17 BG Uys,
18 Maks van Dyk, 19 Tienie Burger, 20 Boom Prinsloo, 21 Tian Meyer, 22 Willie
du Plessis, 23 Johann Sadie
15 Lolagi Visinia, 14 Melani Nanai, 13
Charles Piutau, 12 Hamish Northcott, 11 Tevita Li, 10 Ihaia West, 9 Jimmy
Cowan, 8 Jerome Kaino (captain), 7 Brendon O'Connor, 6 Luke Braid, 5 Patrick
Tuipulotu, 4 Josh Bekhuis, 3 Charlie Faumuina, 2 James Parsons, 1 Tony Woodcock
Substitutes: 16 Matt Moulds, 17 Ofa
Tu'ungafasi, 18 Angus Ta'avao, 19 Steven Luatua, 20 Akira Ioane, 21 Jamison
Gibson-Park, 22 Simon Hickey, 23 Francis Saili