Tuipulotu returns for the Blues ahead of final

Tuipulotu returns for the Blues ahead of final

Blues Captain Patrick Tuipulotu is back in the starting XV for this Saturday’s DHL Super Rugby Grand Final as the Blues take on the Chiefs at Eden Park at 7:05pm.

The Grand Final is sold out with the Blues ticketing team hoping to release limited additional tickets later in the week.

Tuipulotu returns two weeks after he suffered a tear to his medial ligament in his right knee but was cleared to play after testing the knee at training on Tuesday.

Blues Head Coach Vern Cotter said the decision to play Tuipulotu was made with careful medical consideration.

“Patty’s a Blues man through and through and came to us this week pretty keen to play in a Grand Final,” said Cotter.

“He tested the knee on Monday in the gym, then on the grass yesterday. He’s pulled up well and has the all-clear from our medical team – he’s a welcome addition to our pack, our talisman lock and leader,” he said.

Blues Team Doctor James McGarvey said the injury was a known quantity and he’s been guided by Tuipulotu on his return.

“Patty felt good on Monday and with strapping found he was able do everything rugby related with minimal symptoms. Given it’s a final, he decided to try to work through the week and play,” said McGarvey.

Elsewhere Cotter has made minimal changes to his victorious semi-final side with Josh Beehre making way for Tuipulotu and Bryce Heem returning from his calf injury to take a spot on the bench.

“There’s a deep desire in this group to go the whole way but to do that we need to be clear in our thinking, disciplined and not let the occasion get the better of us,” said Cotter. 

“The Chiefs will be coming to spoil the party, we’ve got a sold out Eden Park that we hope will be awash in blue, this will be a great occasion and I can feel the excitement building in the group.” 



  1. Ofa Tu’ungafasi

  2. Ricky Riccitelli

  3. Marcel Renata 

  4. Patrick Tuipulotu (c)

  5. Sam Darry

  6. Akira Ioane

  7. Dalton Papali’i 

  8. Hoskins Sotutu

  9. Finlay Christie

  10. Harry Plummer

  11. Caleb Clarke

  12. AJ Lam

  13. Rieko Ioane

  14. Mark Tele’a

  15. Stephen Perofeta


  16. Kurt Eklund

  17. Joshua Fusitu’a

  18. Angus Ta’avao 

  19. Josh Beehre

  20. Adrian Choat

  21. Taufa Funaki 

  22. Bryce Heem

  23. Cole Forbes

Players not considered: Jordan Lay (ankle), Zarn Sullivan (knee) 

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