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Preview: Blues v Bulls

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Thursday, March 7, 2013     Getty Images

LAST TIME: Blues 29 def Bulls 23, Round 3, 2012 at Loftus Versfeld Stadium

WALKING WOUNDED: Bjorn Basson was unable to be considered for the first game as a result of ankle ligament injury which will see him join the side later in the tour. The Blues are close to full strength.

FORM: Bulls captain Pierre Spies thinks his side can contain the Blues by playing a more 'structured' game. He rightly says it will be a different type of game to what they Blues have had in their first two weeks but containing the ball when moved at speed at which the Blues are capable of playing makes containment a tough exercise. The Bulls are also unbeaten to date and their effort against the Stormers was especially notable but they did struggle to polish off the Force.

Blues coach Sir John Kirwan has been attempting to keep the mojo going for his side, maintaining the enthusiasm but keeping it grounded in the reality that the team could expect to have an up and down campaign. However, confidence has grown and the style of play has been quickly re-established as a Blues style of movement and enjoyment which makes it a powerful mix. There were five or six aspects of the win over the Crusaders that Kirwan felt could be better and that will have been sufficient to keep his side focused on their job.

WE THINK: The Bulls are another team who have never won on Eden Park and it is an event that is unlikely to happen this time around either. Conditions in Auckland have been drought-like for much of 2013 and that looks like continuing for the visitors. Blues by 15.