Chasing an incredible fifth straight title, the Crusaders again start favourites for Super Rugby Aotearoa. The competition didn't disappoint last year and, further COVID breakouts aside, it again promises to be something special -- Liam Napier reports.
Super Rugby Aoteroa have introduced two new law variations, including captain's call and goal line drop-outs, for the 2021 season kicking off in just over two weeks.
Code-hopping star Roger Tuivasa-Sheck will play for the Blues in 2022, the Super Rugby franchise and NZ rugby announced.
A "Super Round" highlights the creation of a crossover trans-Tasman Super Rugby competition for 2021, with one lucky city set to host five games on the one weekend in a similar concept to the NRL's Magic Round of 2019.
Highlanders will welcome defending champions Crusaders in the opening round of Super Rugby Aotearoa on Feb. 26 after New Zealand Rugby (NZR) announced the schedule for the second edition of the domestic competition on Tuesday.
Winger Will Jordan scored his second try of the game five minutes into extra time to give the South a 38-35 victory over the North in New Zealand's first inter-island match since 2012 on Saturday.
The 23-man squads for New Zealand's first North vs. South match in eight years are in and there are key match-ups right across the paddock.
Super Rugby Aotearoa returns to action this weekend, while Super Rugby AU is a week ahead and preparing for Round 2. Follow all the latest team news, match odds and verdicts here.
Right from the outset, Super Rugby Aotearoa established itself as the greatest domestic rugby competition the world had seen. But it remains unknown what shape the competition it could take in 2021, with several issues still to be sorted.
Super Rugby Aotearoa's blockbuster finale is at risk of being played within an empty stadium or even not at all after New Zealand reintroduced restrictions following a COVID-19 breakout in Auckland.
Finlay Christie scored an early try in each half as the Blues beat the Highlanders in their Super Rugby Aotearoa clash in Dunedin to keep the race for the domestic title still alive.
We have ourselves a competition. The Hurricanes' upset of the Crusaders has set up a thrilling conclusion to Super Rugby Aotearoa, just as the battle for All Blacks spots is also really starting to hot up.
The Blues got back on the winning path as they sent the Chiefs crashing to an unwanted record with a 21-17 victory in a defensively focussed Super Rugby Aotearoa clash at Eden Park.
Beauden Barrett was less than impressed with the welcome he received from his former hometown fans last week in Super Rugby Aotearoa and is hopeful that New Zealand crowds will stop booing opposition teams.
Round 6 of Super Rugby Aotearoa produced two further gripping encounters, but it was the performance of Ngani Laumape that left a significant impact on several Blues players and certainly should silence some "disrespectful" critics.
A neck injury to Otere Black is expected to see Beauden Barrett return to his preferred fly-half position next week, which should give him a chance to recoup lost ground to Richie Mo'unga in the battle for the All Blacks No. 10 jersey.
Jordie Barrett outshone his older brother Beauden after slotting a 76th minute sideline conversion to kick the Hurricanes to victory in the final minutes of their 29-27 victory over the Blues.
The wait for Dan Carter's Super Rugby Aotearoa debut goes on after the former All Blacks fly-half was withdrawn from the Blues bench for Saturday's clash with the Hurricanes due to calf tightness.
The Crusaders' blockbuster with the Blues certainly didn't disappoint, as Richie Mo'unga dominated from fly-half and gave Leon MacDonald something to ponder as a result. Catch up with all the weekend's Super Rugby Aotearoa action here.
The Crusaders have continued their unbeaten run with a frantic second half against the Blues.
Rising No. 8 Hoskins Sotutu has committed his immediate future to the Blues and New Zealand rugby, removing almost any chance England coach Eddie Jones could make an audacious bid for the 22-year-old.
Dan Carter gave himself a pass mark after his first game of rugby in New Zealand since 2015 but was not expecting to make a marketers' dream debut for the Blues next week against the Crusaders.
New Zealand fly-half Beauden Barrett will miss Super Rugby next year and play for Suntory Sungoliath in Japan's Top League, but he will be available for the three-times world champions' international programme, the Blues said on Friday.
Former All Blacks flyhalf Dan Carter will make a return to his native Canterbury for his first rugby game in New Zealand since 2015 at the weekend.
Just how good do you have to be to beat the Crusaders right now? Well you have to take every opportunity that comes your way for a start. Meanwhile, something is just not quite right with the Chiefs.