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Blues missing some Black

Mon, 10 Feb 2014 09:25
Tony-woodcock-and-keven-mea

The Blues will be short on experience when they start their Super Rugby campaign later this month.

It was revealed on Monday that three All Blacks are likely to be missing when the Blues take on the Highlanders in their opening competition match.

Coach John Kirwan says Test centurion front row forwards Tony Woodcock and Keven Mealamu won't be considered, as the coaching staff want to ease the veteran pair slowly into the season.

Midfielder Ma'a Nonu is also highly doubtful for the game in Dunedin on February 22, as he recovers from off-season ankle surgery.

Kirwan told The New Zealand Herald there is a "reintegration plan" for prop Woodcock, 33, and hooker Mealamu, 34.

"Both Kevvy and Woody are travelling really well but we need them to have a good season for us," he said.

"That's the plan, to make sure we get this right with the integration. You need a full squad and that's what we're trying to create."

The Blues have lost their first two pre-season games - 35-38 to the Hurricanes and 12-33 to the Waratahs.

Their last trial game is against the Chiefs in Rotorua on Friday.

Source: NZ Newswire

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