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Bekhuis returns for Blues against the Force

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Blues coach Tana Umaga has named Super Rugby centurion Josh Bekhuis in his team to play the Western Force in Perth on Saturday.

Bekhuis missed last week’s Super Rugby match against the Lions in Johannesburg due to a calf strain but has recovered and will guide the Blues line out this weekend.

It is the only change to the forward pack that was unable to establish a dominant platform in the loss to the Lions, with captain James Parsons calling for the a much improved showing from what he said was an embarrassing display last week.

There are two changes in the backs with Billy Guyton to start at halfback for just the second time this season, and Bryn Hall into the replacements.

Former NRL player Matt Duffie comes into the side on the right wing, with in-form Melani Nanai to revert to fullback in place of Lolagi Visinia for his 20th and blazer game.

In the replacements Hoani Matenga moves back to the bench to make way for the return of Bekhuis while Sione Mafileo, who played in the first four games of the season, joins Ofa Tu’ungafasi as reserve prop.

Blues

Sam Prattley, James Parsons ©, Charlie Faumuina, Patrick Tuipulotu, Josh Bekhuis, Jerome Kaino, Tanerau Latimer, Steven Luatua; Billy Guyton, Ihaia West, Tevita Li, Piers Francis, George Moala, Matt Duffie, Melani Nanai.

Replacements: Quentin MacDonald, Ofa Tu’ungafasi, Sione Mafileo, Hoani Matenga, Kara Pryor, Bryn Hall, Matt McGahan, Male Sa’u.

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