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Thread: Saturday 12 June Blues v Western Force at Eden Park

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    Player chiraag's Avatar
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    Saturday 12 June Blues v Western Force at Eden Park

    BLUES (1-15): Alex Hodgman, Kurt Eklund, Nepo Laulala, Gerard Cowley-Tuioti, Patrick Tuipulotu (c), Tom Robinson, Dalton Papalii, Hoskins Sotutu, Finlay Christie, Otere Black, Mark Telea, TJ Faiane, Rieko Ioane, Bryce Heem, Zarn Sullivan

    Reserves: Ray Niula, Karl Tu'inukuafe, Marcel Renata, Josh Goodhue, Akira Ioane, Jonathan Ruru, Harry Plummer, AJ Lam

    INs: Marcel Renata, Josh Goodhue, Ray Niula
    OUTs: Ofa Tuungafasi, Jacob Pierce, Soane Vikena


    That's a very strong looking Blues team, particularly in the forward pack. The Force will need to put in a very good performance to get over the line.

    Hoping to see Ralston and Macdonald in the 23 for the Force, with an eye to next year, but probably doubtful as I'd assume they wouldn't have flown over originally with the squad. Anyone know what the story is with the 2 of them? Ralston was out early in the season with a concussion I thought but hasn't been seen since for some reason...

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    Veteran Sheikh's Avatar
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    The Blues lead the table (both total points and points differential) and won't want to slip up in the last week, as if they miss out on a try bonus point (and only the Hurricanes have got one against us) they could lose out on top spot to the Highlanders or Crusaders (only 27 & 38 points behind). The Highlanders have the Brumbies in Canberra, but the Crusaders have the Rebels in Melbourne and could put a hat-full on them to nick top spot and a home final if the Blues slip up. I'd expect the Blues to be up for this.

    Ralston's concussion might be long-lasting - look at DHP. But he seems to be behind Olowafela who is faster, and Pulu who must train well (he doesn't seem to be able to complete a match, though!) and then Kahui (who probably gets on the pitch because of his leadership).

    I'd be more interested in making sure Ralston gets 100% for next year, although watching him against Bay of Plenty would be nice. Ralston was a bright spot in 2020 and it may be that he's been carrying a niggling injury, or possibly he was being marked better by opponents when he was on. After all, his 4 tries all came in the first 4 games - he didn't score in the 2nd half of the 2020 comp.

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    Don't tell me the sky's the limit when there are footprints on the moon

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    Immortal jargan83's Avatar
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    Would be great to see the side sign off with a win after going close in almost every game during the trans-Tasman competition.

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    My recollection is that of all the NZ teams, it is the Blues that the Force has always struggled most with. The Force is really going to have to lift the physicality and accuracy if they are even going to get close.

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    Champion Tazzmania's Avatar
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    Prior to start and McDonald on the bench

    Team v Blues

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    The Force Onwards and Upwards

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    Champion andrewg's Avatar
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    Good to see some coverage back in today's West.

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    Immortal jargan83's Avatar
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    The Blues are such a bogey side to the Force they let a bald man score.

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    What is it with aus team backs and dumb grubber kicks mid field?

    Several already.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ham105 View Post
    What is it with aus team backs and dumb grubber kicks mid field?

    Several already.
    I know it makes my blood boil! Seriously have they not watched and analysed the crap out of these teams we are playing 😳

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    Immortal jargan83's Avatar
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    That half was a dumpster fire.

    I think the Force game plan is to let the Blues do what they want.

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    Last edited by jargan83; 12-06-21 at 16:10.

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    On da board for 7

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    Dammit

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    Nice!

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    Champion Contributor todd4's Avatar
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    Next year I'd like us to try a totally different centre combination. We really need a combo with some attacking flair. Kyle had a break-out year a fair while back (2013?) & looked like he was going to be a world beater but since then he has really not stepped up to the next level. He and Tevita are good defenders but are too predictable in attack. Hopefully these young guys from the Brumbies may be the answer or do we need someone like Kerevi?

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    Legend Contributor Alison's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by todd4 View Post
    Next year I'd like us to try a totally different centre combination. We really need a combo with some attacking flair. Kyle had a break-out year a fair while back (2013?) & looked like he was going to be a world beater but since then he has really not stepped up to the next level. He and Tevita are good defenders but are too predictable in attack. Hopefully these young guys from the Brumbies may be the answer or do we need someone like Kerevi?
    Totally agree, Todd. But quite honestly I think Kyle is here to stay and Kuridrani is a firm favourite of Hodgo too so I’m sure they won’t be letting go of him either. We need attacking centres who will break the line again and again.

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