Auckland Blues

Blues hold off Force

The Force started the match brightly, with In-form winger Manasa Mataele racing in for the first try of the match in the eighth minute.

The free-flowing scoring continued in the early stages, with Blues fly-half and All Blacks star Beauden Barrett narrowing the margin to five with a straightforward penalty goal in the 12th minute.

The Blues hit the front in the 19th minute courtesy of a close-range Sam Darry try.

Akira Ioane stormed over in the 21st minute, with AJ Lam adding a third try in the 29th minute, as the Blues took a 22-8 lead into half time.

Trans-Tasman games chance to test ourselves, says Drua coach

This Saturday they play their first trans-Tasman game against the Blues in Melbourne.

It'll be a whole new ball game altogether facing New Zealand-based teams, especially the Super Rugby Pacific leaders, however, Byrne said the players are excited.

The big Pacific match-up against Moana Pasifika takes place on May 14 in Sydney.

Byrne said this weekend will be an opportunity for the Drua to measure themselves against the best.

Blues hang on to beat Crusaders

Leading 17-7 at the break, the Blues clung on to win the bruising contest, successfully defending their line in the dying minutes for a historic victory.

The Blues were the first to score when Stephen Perofeta slotted a penalty in the 9th minute.

The Crusaders hit back through Will Jordan when he received a cut out ball from David Havili to touch down in the 18th minute.

Blues hold off Moana Pasifika second half charge

Up 19-5 at halftime, the Blues eventually fought off a spirited fightback from the home side to secure a 32-19 victory at Mt Smart Stadium on Tuesday night.

Moana Pasifika's third try midway through the second spell closed the gap to just five points with 20 minutes remaining.

But the Blues held their nerve, coming up with their fifth try of the match and a late penalty to seal the result.

The two teams were each playing the second match of a three-match run in eight or nine days, meaning both made wholesale changes from their previous game.

Blues boss wants more freedoms for fans

The six New Zealand-based teams in the competition will spend the first few weeks of the season in a hub over coronavirus fears in the remote southern city of Queenstown, while attendance at matches will be capped at 100, in line with the government's attempt to minimise coronavirus infections.

"We're in no-man's land about where things go. Then you've got these draconian close contact rules that make, for most businesses in this country looking through an economic lens, everything unworkable and seemingly very disorganised," said Hore.

'Like-minded' business types pitch in to purchase 40 percent stake in Blues rugby

The franchise announced on Friday the Better Blues Company Limited would purchase the 40 percent holding in the Blues which had previously been held by New Zealand Rugby after they bought back the shareholding from the previous private owners three years ago.

The remaining 60 percent has been shared since 2013 between the provincial unions of Auckland, Northland and North Harbour.

Roger Tuivasa-Sheck headlines Blues squad for Super Rugby Pacific 2022

That’s because – with almost 200 NRL appearances, a 2013 Premiership title and a 2018 Dally M Medal to his name – 28-year-old former Warriors captain is among the highest-profile cross-code converts to have moved from rugby league to rugby union.

As such, the inclusion of Tuivasa-Sheck in next year’s Blues squad makes him one of the most prominent names in the Auckland franchise’s roster, and that’s saying something given they also welcome the return of All Blacks centurion Beauden Barrett back from Japan.

Joe Schmidt joins Blues coaching staff for 2022 season

Schmidt was confirmed on Tuesday to step into a part-time role as a “support coach” to assist Leon MacDonald. He had been an assistant with the franchise from 407, before heading offshore to carve out a respectable international career, in France and Ireland.

The move back into coaching came after Schmidt had taken some time away from hands-on development following his 2019 World Cup commitments with Ireland, and is a positive move by the Blues after the off-season departure of key assistant coach Tana Umaga.

Three Auckland rugby teams won't play again this year

The three Auckland provinces were forced to withdraw from the NPC earlier this month because of level 3 Covid restrictions but it had been hoped to establish a Super City competition for the three sides however New Zealand Rugby says with the continuation of restrictions in Auckland that won't be possible.

On Monday the government announced that the Auckland region will continue to operate under current COVID-19 Alert Level 3 restrictions, for the next two weeks.

Tuipulotu to stay with NZ rugby and Blues

The Blues captain will head to Japan later this year after the All Blacks end of year tour. He will miss the Super Rugby season next year and return to New Zealand mid-2022.

Tuipulotu said while there was a desire to experience playing overseas, he and his family wanted to live in New Zealand long-term.

"In some ways winning the Super Rugby Trans-Tasman title has made my decision easier, because we have got that monkey off our backs at the Blues. It was a hard decision because the Blues as a group have developed so well.