Blues A will take on the visiting Japan A team at Eden Park on Friday, as a curtain-raiser to the Super Rugby match between the Blues and the Highlanders.
The Japan side includes a number of full internationals as well as their developing players, with the match to kick-off at 5.05pm.
Blues hooker Leni Apisai will captain the Blues A side that also includes Blues prop Isaac Salmon, and current replacements Jacob Pierce, Antonio Kiri Kiri, Harrison Levien, D’Angelo Leuila, Tyler Campbell and Malo Tuitama.
It will also be a special moment for Kondo Masaki and Song Gi Paku, who play for the Blues’ sister club Honda Heat in Japan and have been training with the Blues for the past few weeks.
The Blues A team proudly supported by G-Mana Wholesale Autos is: 1. Ezekiel Lindenmuth (Auckland), 2. Leni Apisai (Blues) ©, 3. Isaac Salmon (Blues), 4. Danny Drake (North Harbour), 5. Jacob Pierce (Blues Replacement, North Harbour), 6. Lyndon Dunshea (Auckland), 7. Antonio Kiri Kiri (Blues Replacement, Manawatu), 8. Matt Matich (Northland); 9. Harrison Levien (Blues Replacement, North Harbour), 10. D’Angelo Leuila (Blues Replacement, Auckland), 11. Malo Tuitama (Blues Replacement, Wellington), 12. Blake Hohaia (Northland), 13. Daniel Hilton-Jones (North Harbour), 14. Mark Telea (North Harbour), 15. Tyler Campbell (Blues Replacement, Waikato).
Reserves: 16. Jordan Olsen (Northland), 17. Franck Friconnet (Auckland), 18. Isi Tuungafasi (Auckland), 19. Kondo Masaki (Honda Heat), 20. Adrian Choat (Auckland), 21. Lewis Gjaltema (North Harbour), 22. Song Gi Paku (Honda Heat), 23. Scott Gregory (Northland), 24. Salesi Rayasi (Auckland), 25. Ben Sa’u (Auckland)
Staff: Tom Coventry: Coach, Otere Black: Asst. Coach, Paul Gianotti: Manager, Simon Kim: Doctor, Harley Mathews: Physio, Julia Herbst: Analyst, John Ryan: Trainer.