Blues make one change for Crusaders

Date published: July 12 2018

Blues head coach Tana Umaga has made just one alteration to his starting line-up to take on the Crusaders in their Super Rugby derby in Christchurch on Saturday.

The only change from the pack which lost to the Hurricanes in Wellington last week is a start for Ben Nee-Nee after an injury to Matiaha Martin ruled him out, while the backline remains the same.

The Blues will aim to give long-serving star Jerome Kaino a fitting send-off in his final game for the Auckland-based club.

Kaino, who heads to France after the season, will play his 139th game for the Blues, to sit second on the all-time Blues list behind Keven Mealamu.

Blues: 15 Matt Duffie, 14 Melani Nanai, 13 Michael Collins, 12 Rieko Ioane, 11 Caleb Clarke, 10 Stephen Perofeta, 9 Augustine Pulu (c), 8 Akira Ioane, 7 Blake Gibson, 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Ben Nee-Nee, 4 Gerard Cowley-Tuioti, 3 Ofa Tuungafasi, 2 Matt Moulds, 1 Alex Hodgman
Replacements: 16 Ross Wright, 17 Pauliasi Manu, 18 Sione Mafileo, 19 Jacob Pierce, 20 Murphy Taramai, 21 Sam Nock, 22 Bryn Gatland, 23 Tamati Tua

Date: Saturday, July 14
Venue: AMI Stadium, Christchurch
Kick-off: 19:35 local (08:35 BST, 07:35 GMT)
Referee: Federico Anselmi
Assistant Referees: Jamie Nutbrown, Mike Fraser
TMO: Shane McDermott