Barrett and Tuivasa-Sheck combine as 10 and 12 for the Blues

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But, lining up against Fijian Drua with Roger Tuivasa-Sheck will be something new in DHL Super Rugby Pacific's super weekend in Melbourne.


The former league international and Warriors captain has recovered from an injury. Barrett said it was hoped he would get some time against the Crusaders in the Blues' win on Good Friday, but the nature of the match meant that wasn't possible.


But the side were looking forward to getting him some ball to show what he could do in Melbourne.


Barrett said Tuivasa-Sheck was freakish in what he could.


“I've seen him do things that I haven't seen before on the field, one-on-ones, things like that, but I've been impressed with his professionalism, the questions he asks and how much he knows about footy.”

Beauden Barrett


"I think a lot of people would be surprised about that. He's clearly been watching while he's been playing for the Warriors and Kiwis, so he's picked it up really quick, and I've been impressed.


"He has a lot more time than typically those playing 12 [second five-eighths] if they were making the transition and he is a bit more calculated and makes good decisions rather than just being a pure athlete and he's tactically right up there," he said.



Playing the Australians provided some mental freshness in coping with different opponents while on tour.


Barrett said the players were grateful to have a rest over the Easter break and had returned to training with a spring in their step.


"Today was a great training, we really flicked the switch. For those travelling we're excited to get over to Melbourne and get stuck in," he said.


Barrett said being at the top of the table, and a target, was a privilege and was what the team aspired towards.


But they had set a standard for themselves and realised they still had growth to achieve, and there was still a long way to go in the competition.


Assistant coach Craig McGrath said the Drua played a different style to what the Blues had faced recently.


"They live off the turnover, and they have an uncanny knack of the ball bouncing into their hands, and offloads, so it is going to be interesting. We'll have to be on our game," he said.


Coping with the different styles did not impact on preparation of defensive plans, there were just odd tweaks, he said.


"We back what we do against any opposition," he said.


McGrath has coaching experience in Melbourne and said he expected that while it was a non-rugby town, there would be plenty of interest in the weekend.


"Normally when they [the Rebels] play New Zealand teams its packed. When they play anyone else its not. There'll be a lot of interest and people who know nothing about rugby will turn up to the games," he said.



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