The Hurricanes will field yet another loose forward trio for Sunday morning's clash with the Bulls in Pretoria.
It still looks a potentially lethal combination, however, the industrious Brad Shields at No 8, the dynamic Ardie Savea at openside flanker and, for the first time in 2017, Vaea Fifita at blindside flanker.
Fifita wore the No 6 jersey twice last season, and has been solid at lock since returning from injury last month, but this move should allow him to express himself more with his athletic and strong ball carrying. It spells trouble for a Bulls outfit labouring at 3-8 this season, one of their worst years since Heyneke Meyer took them to an 0-11 record, and last place, for 2002 with a side that included Victor Matfield.
In-form Mark Abbott, who was rested for the 61-7 shellacking of the Cheetahs in Wellington last weekend, returns to the second row, pushing Reed Prinsep again to the bench.
Loni Uhila moves into loosehead prop, while Jordie Barrett reverts to the No 15 jersey in place of brother Beauden, who shifts back to No 10 as he eyes up 1000 Super Rugby points (he sits on 990).
Midfielders Vince Aso and Ngani Laumape have 24 tries between them this season, proving hard to contain, while the halves of Barrett senior and TJ Perenara are hot to trot.
Cory Jane, James Blackwell and James O'Reilly are the three unused members of the Hurricanes' 26-man touring squad. They may come into contention for the Force clash on June 3.
There is much to play for in the franchise's four remaining regular season matches. Assuming that the Crusaders clinch the New Zealand conference, the Hurricanes would love to be the highest-ranking Australasian wildcard, which would mean fifth spot and an eminently winnable quarter-final to the Australian conference winners, be it Brumbies, Waratahs or even Reds. They have to keep their noses ahead of the Chiefs and Highlanders to seal second position in their conference and five points at Loftus Versfeld, once an impregnable citadel for the Bulls, would be most welcome.
They should have too much class across the paddock for a side that has shipped more than 50 points in two of their last three games, to the Crusaders and Lions, sandwiching a tighter contest in the wet in falling to the Highlanders.
The Bulls look a pale shadow of the team that won three Super Rugby titles (2007, '09-10) and will do well to hold the margin to 30 points, especially if it is dry. They lag the Africa 1 conference leading Stormers by no less than 15 competition points, but their historical record against the Hurricanes is a useful 9-10 from 19 matches.
Kickoff is at 1.05am on Sunday.
Hurricanes: Jordie Barrett, Wes Goosen, Vince Aso, Ngani Laumape, Julian Savea, Beauden Barrett, TJ Perenara (c), Brad Shields, Ardie Savea, Vaea Fifita, Sam Lousi, Mark Abbott, Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, Ricky Riccitelli, Loni Uhila
Reserves: Leni Apisai, Chris Eves, Ben May, Reed Prinsep, Callum Gibbins, Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, Otere Black, Ben Lam