Super Rugby

Crusaders continue to dominate Blues

The two teams have a traditional rivalry like no other and Friday night was another physical battle.

In his first start of the season Blues captain Patrick Tuipulotu crossed the try line in the sixth minute to give the home side an early lead.

There was a significant delay following the opening try as Crusaders tighthead prop Oliver Jager suffered a head injury attempting a tackle and was taken from the field.

Twenty minutes later the Crusaders wing George Bridge had given the visitors the lead after some good work off a lineout five metres from the try line.

Blues ready Beauden for the Lions

Barrett was at Blues training Wednesday to meet several of his new teamates after his shift from the Hurricanes.

He made a brief appearance at pre-season training but has been taking and extended break from the game in the wake of the World Cup.

"He's in today to have a look around and see how we are going. We can check on him and see how he's going so it's good to have him back around," said assistant coach Tom Coventry.

Tahs vow to persevere with offload game

The Tahs lost their first two Super Rugby games, by 18 to the Crusaders and 20 to the Blues, each time paying the price for botching potential scoring opportunities with poor ball control.

In the two instances NSW held onto the ball for more than eight phases against the Blues, they scored tries.

"As coaches, the last thing we're going to tell the boys is to stop the offloads," Whitaker said.

"We're not a team that can go out there and just play one pass, tuck it under their wing and carry into contact because we're not big enough to do that.

Rusty Highlanders go down to Sharks

The South African side scored five tries to the Highlanders two.

The hosts opened the scoring with a penalty in the sixth minute of the match when first five Mitchell Hunt kicked a penalty.

However, it was all one way traffic from there.

Flanker James Venter was the first try scorer in the match (31st minute) before Springboks winger Makazole Mapimpi scored two tries in the space of four minutes before the half was up.

By half-time the Sharks led 27-3.

Mo'unga out and McKenzie in for Super Rugby showdown

Lingering knee and groin injuries for Crusaders first five-eighth Richie Mo'unga means coach Scott Robertson has rearranged his backline for the round two match.

Regular Crusaders fullback David Havili will start at first five-eighth for the first time at Super Rugby level to fill the gap left by Mo'unga who left the field during the Crusaders opening round win over the Waratahs.

Will Jordan moves to fullback and Sevu Reece lines up on the right wing.

Despite the loss of 17-game All Black Mo'unga, the Crusaders will not be short on experience.

Blues' Rieko Ioane to miss several weeks with injury

The All Blacks wing impressed with two tries in the 37-29 loss to the Chiefs on Friday, but is now expected to be out of action for several weeks.

The news will be a bitter pill to swallow for the 22-year-old, who looked to have rediscovered some of the dazzling form that eluded him through a challenging 2019 season.

News of the injury comes just days after reports of raucous parties at Ioane's Auckland home, where he and brother Akira Ioane - also a member of the Blues squad - were allegedly at the centre of noise complaints. 

Highlanders give 'Highlighter' the flick

The Dunedin based super rugby franchise is dropping the jersey from its wardrobe.

Introduced in 2011 the flouro-green jersey was worn for the last time by the Highlanders in a pre-season match against the New South Wales Waratahs in Sydney last month.

It wasn't well received by Highlanders fans when it was introduced and was derided by opposition fans but did become synonomous with the side.

The Highlanders new alternate jersey is much more conservative bluish green.

Crusaders start 2020 season with comfortable win over Waratahs

The Crusaders opened the scoring with a penalty kick to hometown hero David Havili in the 10th minute and never relinquished the lead for the rest of the match.

Wingers Will Jordan and Leicester Faingaanuku and midfielder Braydon Ennor all scored tries in the first half, while Waratahs first five Will Harrison kept his side in the match early with two penalties.

By halftime the Crusaders had a 24-6 lead and looked to be cruising as first five Richie Mo'unga kept the visitors guessing with his pin point cross field kicks and deft passing.

Stormers blow Hurricanes away

The Hurricanes made too many unforced errors in what was a forgettable performance from the New Zealand side, who tried to play a physical game that was not matched by skill.

They lost centre Billy Proctor and flank Vaea Fifita to yellow cards, while Riccitelli was also fortunate to escape sanction for his late hit on Kolisi.

The Stormers will be sweating over the fitness of Siya Kolisi who was forced off in the first half.

Waratahs sign Japanese 7s international

Waratahs coach Rob Penney hinted at a new centre signing some weeks ago and it was reported then that Lasila was reported to be on his way, the club only confirmed his addition on Thursday.

The Japanese Sevens international and former Tonga U23 player played under Penney at Japanese division two club Toyota and it was that relationship that brought him to NSW.

“Siosifa has a fantastic skill-set, he can play right across the backline and most importantly he’s a good team man who understands what we’re trying to build here at the [NSW] Waratahs,” Penney said.