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Aisle be Back – the bye week

The Hurricanes Hunters bench kicking back in their recent win over Japan A. Hopefully some of these players and others will be playing club rugby this coming Saturday, ahead of the Hunters and Hurricanes squads trip to Japan next weekend.
  • 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 I think we can park that up.

Bargaining was hoping for a quick fix, like that South African lock. Or Dane Coles turning out every match. Yeah, well, that hasn’t worked out.

Acceptance is that this is as good as it gets. The pack is what it is, and you know, I’m okay with that.

In fact, there’s a lot to be said for your team yet to play 80 minutes of great rugby – and yet still edging the tight games. A hell of a lot.

It feels like a team that doesn’t actually like losing. That’s called spirit, and if the Canes can sustain that, who knows what they might unleash if they make the finals. You wouldn’t fancy playing them if every pass stuck.

That bye however couldn’t come too soon. Someone needs to put Ardie in deep freeze though and tell him not to fly to Tokyo for the Sunwolves.

Ardie’s off the shoulder of Ben Lam try with its two sidesteps is the stuff you remember a long long time, because it was freakishly good.

So the longer the Hurricanes go with winning with a so-so pack, and hot and cold backs, the more they irritate everyone else. Keep it up fellas.


Let’s hear it for the Blues. I know the sceptics are out there, and I’m reserving judgment.

But it’s been too long since there was a bit of spring in the step of rugby up in the north.

It can only be a good thing for them to build from here – unless they beat us of course.

As for the Nonu revival, who in the Canes fan club could deny him a nostalgic shot. But it would be cruel if the old guy edged out Laumape for the World Cup.

Don’t think it will happen but as I’ll keep saying, it’s a long way to go before any squad steps on the plane, and plenty of injury minefields ahead


There ought to be a law against dorks trolling games their teams aren’t involved in.

I am stuck without telly here so get to follow matches by live scoring on the internet. Maybe it’s just me, but there’s always a couple of Cantabs on the comments – and they always end up framing what’s happening in terms of how crash hot their team is.

Guys, you’re not even playing this match. Maybe Hurricanes fans do the same on Sader matches.

It just reminds me of the old joke about David Campese. He is out with a female admirer and tells her how wonderfully he just played, on and on and on.

Finally he stops and says: “That’s enough from me. I want to hear from you … so –  how good do you think I was today?


With the Hurricanes having their bye this weekend, it is expected that a smattering of players will be available – and keen – to play club rugby this Saturday. Watch this space!

Beauden Barrett find the try line recently against the Stormers.

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