Aisle be Back: Hurricanes v Sunwolves in Tokyo


He’s only on the bench but the most pleasing news for me this week was the return of James Marshall. You may recall he suffered a nasty (is there a nice?) dislocated shoulder against the Waratahs in what seems ages ago. I and a lot of people probably assumed it was season ending. Now utility

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Aisle be Back – the bye week


By Kevin McCarthy  What are those stages of grief? Denial, bargaining, acceptance. Works pretty well with the Hurricanes this year, particularly those forwards. I think we’re now pretty much at acceptance. Denial was thinking the coaches could take a pack lacking stars and turn it into a solid unit. Yeah well injuries haven’t helped, but

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Aisle be Back: Hurricanes v Highlanders (2)


By Kevin McCarthy Photos by Hugh Pretorius The knives are out for the coaches, at least for some fans. That won’t be news to them.  Coaching the Hurricanes has always been a juggling act of an often erratic team measured against what potentially that team could do. If you haven’t noticed, then you haven’t been

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Aisle be Back: Hurricanes v Crusaders #2


Above: Ardie Savea with Isaia Walker-Leawere in support in last week’s win against the Stormer. PHOTO: Hugh Pretorius. By Kevin McCarthy I don’t think anyone thinks the timing of the Hurricanes v Crusaders derby is ideal. No wonder the Kiwi sides are looking forward to the Super Rugby rejig and having to play each other

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Short passes 25 March


Above: Tawa’s Kemara Hauiti-Parapara and Tawa’s scrum press towards the try line against Petone. Hauiti-Parapara started the match at first five-eighth but moved into halfback in the second half. PHOTO: Barry Stead. Another hot sunny day to open the new season of rugby around the Wellington region. Conditions were just about perfect for most summertime

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Aisle be Back: Hurricanes v Stormers


By Kevin McCarthy. How ridiculous to be talking about rugby in the wake of the Christchurch atrocities. But that’s where we are, and it’s right to be discussing the matter of the Crusaders name. I would be amazed if it isn’t changed. No matter how it has become synonymous with Super Rugby’s most successful team,

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Short Passes – 21 March


Club Rugby in Wellington starts this coming Saturday. The draw is HERE Above: The Tawa and Marist St Pat’s teams observe a moment’s silence remembering the victims of the Christchurch shooting that took place some 24 hours earlier. PHOTO: Barry Stead. Terrible events in Christchurch last Friday. Watch the tribute by the Avalon Wolves below: 

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Short Passes 11 March


  The anticipation for the opening round of the Swindale Shield is gathering momentum. Wellington Premier club rugby kicks off on Saturday 23 March. View the draw HERE  Some encouraging pre-season hit-outs this past weekend, at home and away. Local clubs Tawa and Paremata-Plimmerton, Wainuiomata and Poneke and Wellington and Oriental-Rongotai met in full squad practice matches.

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Aisle be Back: Hurricanes v Highlanders


 – By Kevin McCarthy How’s that world league thing looking. Slightly better than the Chiefs at this stage. Still, if like most of the world, you think it’s a dumb idea, do not underestimate that it will make a comeback and in fact, eventually occur. My reasoning is that if world rugby is all about

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Short Passes – 4 March


Above: Chase Tiatia in action on debut for the Hurricanes on Friday night. PHOTO: Dave Brownlie. Full gallery at Just under three weeks to go before the greatest show in town kicks off. Check out the first week Swindale Shield draw HERE The first weekend of March saw many clubs in action in pre-season fixtures.

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