Super Rugby

Beauden Barrett still the fastest 'bronco' around

Barrett posted a time of 4min 12 seconds at Blues training earlier this week taking eight seconds off his previous best for the 1.2km shuttle run, which is completed in five sets of 20m, 40m and 60m distances.

It's a fitness test all the Super Rugby use and yesterday it was the Chiefs turn with Damien McKenzie expected to go close to Barrett's record but Chiefs assistant coach Tabai Matson says while McKenzie has "jet shoes" he didn't pip Barrett.

"He was close to a PB (personal best time) so that's a big thing but there were no world records broken.

Stormers secure the signature of Springboks fullback from rival Bulls

The fleet-footed World Cup winner, who turns 25 on Wednesday, is one of the most exciting outside backs in South Africa and will add firepower to a Stormers backline which already features the likes of Herschel Jantjies, Damian Willemse, Sebaelo Senatla and Sergeal Petersen.

Nehe Milner-Skudder turned down a chance to represent his former Super team

The Manawatu wing burst onto the Super Rugby scene in 2015, helping the Hurricanes to the grand final and earning a place in the All Blacks 2015 World Cup squad.

Milner-Skudder scored six tries at the tournament – including one in the final against Australia – and was named World Rugby’s Breakthrough Player of the Year.

Unfortunately the versatile speedster has been hampered by a frustrating run of injuries in the time since and played just five more test matches for New Zealand.

Sam Whitelock back for the Crusaders

Whitelock had planned to skip Super Rugby this year while enjoying a playing stint in Japan but the Covid-19 pandemic has forced the 31-year-old lock home to New Zealand.

Crusaders coach Scott Robertson said Whitelock had been given the green light to play in the hastily arranged 'Aotearoa' competition, which will see the country's five Super Rugby teams play each other over 10 weeks from mid-June.

Super Rugby was suspended after seven rounds in March due to the novel coronavirus outbreak and may not be able to resume in 2020 due to travel curbs and border controls.

Super Rugby Aotearoa four weeks away

The Highlanders will host the Chiefs in Dunedin on Saturday June 13th, while the Blues will host the Hurricanes the following Sunday afternoon.

The announcement came following the Government's announcement sport can resume when the country moves to alert level two on Thursday.

Super Rugby Aotearoa would see the five franchises playing each other home and away over 10 weeks, with two matches each weekend.

Each side would have two bye weekends.

Matches would be played in closed stadiums until rules around spectators changed.

No major change to Super Rugby for another two years

Sanzaar chief executive Andy Marinos says speculation regarding the future of Super Rugby and the Four Nations has been misleading.

Marinos said the impact of the pandemic is likely to mean a domestic focus in each territory when the competition resumes but long term Sanzaar has already sold a 14-team super rugby competition as well as a four team Rugby Championship to broadcasters.

The New Zealand, Australia, Argentina and South Africa rugby unions have also all committed to the joint venture through until 2030, he said.

Horan calls for Pacific Island inclusion in Super Rugby revamp

The Sanzaar competition looks set to undergo a major revamp from next year, with New Zealand Rugby having announced a wholesale review into every aspect following the outbreak of COVID-19.

International travel has been an exorbitant feature of the competition and with many flight paths currently closed off by the coronavirus crisis, there is widespread speculation the teams from South Africa and Argentina will be omitted from an Asia-Pacific model of Super Rugby.

Steven Luatua interested in making a return to the Blues

The 15-cap All Black left Kiwi shores in 2017 to venture north and take up a contract with the Bristol Bears; a move he hoped would add to his game.

Still just 28, there’s plenty of life left in Luatua’s career and speaking to Sky Sport’s Breakdown show he said he still had a goal to achieve with the Blues in Super Rugby.

“One of my goals was always to come back and play 100 games for the Blues – I think I’m 20 or 30-odd short so that’s a couple of seasons,” he said.

New Zealand Rugby to review Super Rugby

In a statement New Zealand Rugby says the review is to ensure the future success for the clubs and competition on and off the field.

It says the review, called Aratipu - is about growing, regeneration and invigoration.

Blues Chair and Barrister, Don Mackinnon will Chair Aratipu and will be joined by Chiefs Chair, Tonia Cawood, Hurricanes Chair, Iain Potter, Crusaders Chair, Grant Jarrold, Highlanders Chair, Doug Harvie, Private Investor Representative, Liz Dawson, NZR Chair Brent Impey and NZR Chief Executive Mark Robinson.

Wallaby calls for rethink of 'outdated' Super Rugby

The Melbourne Rebels back believes the competition, which features 15 teams across Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Argentina and Japan, needs to be replaced by a more local product.

"Maybe the model that we've got is a little bit aged and outdated and maybe we need to have a rethink," the 30-year-old told rugby.com.au.

"I guess this is almost forcing us to do it, whether it be in the short term until those borders open or whether it be long-term into something else that's a bit more sustainable, bit more domestically focused.