Match details: Sunday 14 June, 3.35pm at Eden Park
Referee: Mike Fraser
Won: Blues 15, Hurricanes 17, draws 1
Last match: Blues 24, Hurricanes 15 (7 March 2020)
Blues: Beauden Barrett, Mark Telea, Rieko Ioane, TJ Faiane, Caleb Clarke, Otere Black, Sam Nock; Hoskins Sotutu, Blake Gibson, Tom Robinson, Josh Goodhue, Patrick Tuipulotu (c), Ofa Tu’ungafasi, James Parsons, Alex Hodgman.
Reserves: Kurt Eklund, Ezekiel Lindenmuth, Marcel Renata, Gerard Cowley-Tuioti, Dalton Papalii, Fin Christie, Harry Plummer, Matt Duffie.
Hurricanes: Chase Tiatia, Wes Goosen, Vince Aso, Ngani Laumape, Ben Lam, Jackson Garden-Bachop, TJ Perenara (co-c); Gareth Evans, Du’Plessis Kirifi, Reed Prinsep, Scott Scrafton, James Blackwell, Tyrel Lomax, Dane Coles (co-c), Fraser Armstrong.
Reserves: Asafo Aumua, Tevita Mafileo, Alex Fidow, Isaia Walker-Leawere, Vaea Fifita, Ardie Savea, Jamie Booth, Billy Proctor.
Sunday might seem like an episode of the Twilight Zone to Hurricanes fans when Beauden Barrett runs out not just in a blue jersey, but also with the number 15 on his back not 10. Barrett is an all-time Hurricanes great. He stands atop the club’s point scoring record and led them to their only title in 2016.
But that will quickly be forgotten when he takes the field for the Blues on Sunday. Veteran broadcaster John Campbell has made his feelings clear by saying he will yell at Barrett that “he has the wrong jersey on” from the stands at Eden Park.
The Hurricanes know they will need more than jibes from the crowd to contain the former World Rugby Player of the Year. As far as new team debuts go, they do not get any bigger than this.