Super Rugby Aotearoa

Chiefs extend stay in Australia

The match was originally scheduled to be played in Hamilton on Sunday, but due to on-going uncertainty around the Rebels ability to travel to New Zealand, the match will instead be played at Leichardt Oval in Sydney.

The match will kick off at 5pm NZT.

The Chiefs squad are already in Sydney following their match against the Queensland Reds in Townsville last week. The playing group stayed in Australia in anticipation of the extension of the quarantine and travel protocols.

Highlanders may freshen up side for Rebels game after long trip to Perth

The Highlanders beat the Force 25-15 on Friday to record their first back-to-back wins in two years, but the long trip back from Perth will be a consideration for the coaches as they mull changes to the side to face the struggling Rebels.

“Yeh, potentially,” coach Clarke Dermody said after the Highlanders game on Friday. “We'll obviously do the next couple of days well.

“When we get home we’ll see how everybody’s bodies are and how the boys are feeling.

Chiefs victory continues NZ Super Rugby winning run

It was the ninth straight win for New Zealand teams over their Australian counterparts.

Samisoni Taukei'aho scored for the Chiefs after just four minutes, a Luke Jacobson double giving the home team a 19-5 lead at halftime after Len Ikitau provided the Brumbies' only points in the first 40 minutes.

Damian McKenzie and Alex Nankivell crossed inside the first 10 minutes after the restart, while Anton Lienert-Brown's 64th minute try wrapped up a dominant performance.

Crusaders thrash Reds to underline New Zealand dominance

The All Blacks first five-eighth scored a hat-trick of tries and kicked eight conversions as the Super Rugby Aotearoa champions were emphatic 63-28 winners over Super Rugby AU champions Reds in Brisbane on Saturday.

The Crusaders scored nine tries in front of a crowd of 20,000, with Sevu Reece grabbing a brace and Cullen Grace, Codie Taylor, Tamaiti Williams and a penalty try further inflating the scoreline and earning them a record win over the Reds.

Chiefs prop Atu Moli back from second year-long injury absence to face Brumbies

The four-test All Black has been ravaged by injury in recent years, so much so he has played just 15 of the Chiefs’ last 58 games – dating back to the opening round of the 2018 season – thanks to two year-long stints on the sidelines.

The latest setback for the 25-year-old came between last year’s pre-Covid competition and the Super Rugby Aotearoa start up, where he was struck down with chronic hip dysfunction and had to undergo FAI (femoroacetabular impingement) surgery to both hips.

Super Rugby Aotearoa: Crusaders claim 12th title with win over Chiefs

The hosts secured a 12th Super Rugby title, a second in the domestic edition and the fifth in a row.

Winger Sevu Reece and fullback Will Jordan scored tries in the first 16 minutes but thereafter the Crusaders -- reduced to 13 men in the second half with two men in the sin bin -- had to rely on the boot of Richie Mo'unga to keep the Chiefs at bay.

The first five kicked a conversion, three penalties and a drop goal and, just as importantly, banged the ball into the corners to keep the Chiefs in their own half late in the game.

Can the Chiefs overcome history?

The Crusaders won the inaugural edition of the New Zealand competition last season without a final but the big red machine have claimed six of their record 10 Super Rugby titles as hosts, with many of the finals not even close.

The Chiefs have already beaten the Crusaders once in Hamilton this year, however, and coach Clayton McMillan said his squad was heading south confident of what would be a major upset.

"On any given day, any team can be beaten, and we have proven that," he said.

Bird lands for Hurricanes

The 30-year-old former Crusaders and Chiefs representative will lineup for the Wellington Lions for this year's Bunnings Warehouse NPC before joining the Hurricanes set-up next year.

"I'm excited to be getting back into Super Rugby next year and returning to NZ with my family to live," the two-test All Black said.

Chiefs veteran Liam Messam proud of current team

The 37-year-old Messam wound back the clock on Saturday night, coming off the bench in the 55th minute in the Chiefs’ 39-19 loss to the Blues at Eden Park.

The veteran was called into the squad last Tuesday after it was confirmed Kaylum Boshier, Mitchell Karpik and Simon Parker all had injuries that would sideline them for the rest of the season.

It was Messam’s first appearance for the Chiefs since 2018 and his 180th overall, but he says he doesn’t know if he’ll get to 181.

“I’m not sure,” Messam told Stuff.

Hurricanes dominate Highlanders in Super Rugby Aotearoa

In a free-flowing game the Highlanders were on the scoreboard first with a penalty in the fifth minute, before Devan Flanders scored the first of the Hurricanes six tries.

Both teams were down to 14 men in the 15th minute when Hurricanes captain Dane Coles and Highlanders first five-eighth Mitch Hunt were yellow carded for foul play.

The Highlanders adjusted quickest, with Japanese loose forward Kazuko Himeno breaking away to set up Josh Dickson to score the visitors first try.