Blues without Bekhuis for Lions duel
Cape Town - The absence of enduring lock Josh Bekhuis is the
notable omission from the Blues team to take on the Lions in Johannesburg on
Saturday (kick-off 19:15).
Bekhuis tweaked his calf in the win over the Kings in Port
Elizabeth, with the injury not improving sufficiently to play.
It will be the first game that the Super Rugby centurion has
missed this year for the Blues, with the aggressive Hoani Matenga to take his
place for his third start in the last five games.
With an expected major battle upfront, All Black Charlie
Faumuina returns to start in the front row alongside the in-form Sam Prattley
and skipper James Parsons.
Robust loose forward Joe Edwards moves into the reserves
with Steven Luatua providing the lock cover. The backline remains unchanged
from last week’s game against the Kings.
15 Lolagi Visinia, 14 Melani Nanai, 13 George Moala, 12
Piers Francis, 11 Tevita Li, 10 Ihaia West, 9 Bryn Hall, 8 Steven Luatua, 7
Tanerau Latimer, 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Hoani Matenga, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu, 3
Charlie Faumuina, 2 James Parsons (captain), 1 Sam Prattley
Substitutes: 16 Quentin MacDonald, 17 Nic Mayhew, 18 Ofa
Tu’ungafasi, 19 Kara Pryor, 20 Joe Edwards, 21 Billy Guyton, 22 Matt McGahan,
23 Male Sau