Former Highlanders centre Anthony Tuitavake will take on his old team-mates when the Blues travel to Dunedin on Friday.
The powerful North Harbour midfielder claimed a spot in the Blues squad this year after being drafted south to the Highlanders last season. Now he gets a start for the Blues with Ben Atiga forced out with a mouth injury from a midweek gym accident.
Tuitavake is one of three personnel changes made by coach David Nucifora to his starting side for this second round clash at Carisbrook.
All Blacks loose forward Angus Macdonald has been forced out with his hamstring injury and Nucifora has had to shuffle his back row.
Nick Williams moves from the blindside to No 8 to cover the absence of Macdonald with veteran Justin Collins coming off the bench to start at No 6.
Former All Black Steve Devine has recovered from his knock to the head to gain the starting halfback’s job with John Senio dropping down to the bench.
Blues team to play Highlanders:
15 Isa Nacewa, 14 Doug Howlett, 13 Anthony Tuitavake, 12 Luke McAlister, 11 Joe Rokocoko, 10 Tasesa Lavea, 9 Steve Devine, 8 Nick Williams, 7 Daniel Braid, 6 Justin Collins, 5 Ali Williams, 4 Greg Rawlinson, 3 John Afoa, 2 Keven Mealamu (c), 1 Tony Woodcock.
Subs: 16 Tim Dow, 17 Saimone Taumoepeau, 18 Kurtis Haiu, 19 Anthony Boric, 20 John Senio, 21 Rua Tipoki, 22 Vili Waqaseduadua.