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  • Ranger,
    Penalty goals: Kerr, Noakes,
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13 - 20

Brumbies

  • White,
    Penalty goals: Lealiifano (5),
  • Super Rugby
  • Overall Group
  • 25th May 2013
  • KO 08:35
  • Ground: Eden Park, Auckland

Blues v Brumbies - Super Rugby match preview

Last updated: 25th May 2013  

Colby Faingaa

Colby Faingaa comes into the Brumbies squad to deputise for the injury George Smith

Steven Luatua Blues SR 2013

Steven Luatua is unavailable having picked up a neck strain during the week

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Sir John Kirwan has made two changes to his Blues side ahead of Saturday's Super Rugby clash with the Brumbies in Auckland.

Flanker Steven Luatua has been ruled out having sustained a neck injury during last week's 23-3 defeat at the hands of the Crusaders.

The 22-year-old will be replaced by Brendan O'Connor, who is promoted from the bench to start at blindside flanker, while prop Angus Ta'avao faces a late fitness test on a knee injury with Sam Prattley named as cover.

In the backs, Francis Saili has been preferred to Jackson Willison at inside centre as the Blues look to keep their play-off hopes alive.

Meanwhile the third-placed Brumbies have named one change to their squad which lost to the Waratahs last time out.

George Smith is unavailable having suffered a medial ligament injury during fixture which saw the Brumbies lose 28-22.

The absence of Smith allows Colby Faingaa to start at openside flanker while Jordan Smiler is added to Jake White's replacements.

Centres Pat McCabe and Clyde Rathbone have both recovered from their respective injuries to make the Brumbies bench for the round 15 tie.

Blues: 15 Charles Piutau, 14 Frank Halai, 13 Rene Ranger, 12 Francis Saili, 11 George Moala, 10 Chris Noakes, 9 Piri Weepu, 8 Peter Saili, 7 Luke Braid, 6 Brendon O'Connor, 5 Ali Williams (capt), 4 Culum Retallick, 3 Angus Ta'avao/Sam Prattley, 2 Keven Mealamu, 1 Tim Perry.
Replacements: 16 James Parsons, 17 Sam Prattley/Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 18 Anthony Boric, 19 Kane Barrett, 20 Jamison Gibson-Park, 21 Baden Kerr, 22 Jackson Willison.

Brumbies: 15 Jesse Mogg, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Christian Lealiifano, 11 Joe Tomane, 10 Matt Toomua, 9 Nic White, 8 Ben Mowen (capt), 7 Colby Faingaa, 6 Peter Kimlin, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Scott Fardy, 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Scott Sio.
Replacements: 16 Siliva Siliva, 17 Ruan Smith, 18 Fotu Auelua, 19 Jordan Smiler, 20 Ian Prior, 21 Robbie Coleman, 22 Clyde Rathbone.

What they said...

Blues head coach Sir John Kirwan

"I think Francis [Saili] brought a real excitement to the game last week when he came on.

"We need him to step up with his vision and his verbals, looking up and making the right calls but if he can bring his excitement and footwork then we'll be really happy."

Brumbies head coach Jake White

"The players are aware of how important a win in Auckland is for the club heading into the tail end of the season and we will be working hard to regain some of the momentum we had in the early parts of the season."

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Forthcoming Super Rugby Fixtures
TimeFixture
Super Rugby
Friday 6th March
Super Rugby
06:35Chiefs vs Highlanders
08:40Brumbies vs Western Force
Saturday 7th March
06:35Blues vs Lions
08:40Reds vs Waratahs
15:05Cheetahs vs Bulls
17:10Stormers vs Sharks
Friday 13th March
06:35Hurricanes vs Blues
11:00Western Force vs Melbourne Rebels
Saturday 14th March
03:30Crusaders vs Lions
06:35Highlanders vs Waratahs
08:40Reds vs Brumbies
13:00Stormers vs Chiefs
15:05Cheetahs vs Sharks
Friday 20th March
06:35Highlanders vs Hurricanes
08:40Melbourne Rebels vs Lions
Saturday 21st March
06:35Crusaders vs Cheetahs
15:05Bulls vs Western Force
17:10Sharks vs Chiefs
Sunday 22nd March
05:05Waratahs vs Brumbies
Friday 27th March
06:35Hurricanes vs Melbourne Rebels
09:00Reds vs Lions
Saturday 28th March
05:30Chiefs vs Cheetahs
06:35Highlanders vs Stormers
08:40Waratahs vs Blues
15:05Sharks vs Western Force

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Phil Edwards

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