The best and worst from the latest Super Rugby action.

Back of the week

Richie Mo'unga - Crusaders

How important is Mo'unga to the Crusaders? Well, he didn't play in their loss to the Waratahs or recent draw against the Sharks... a success rate typical of his team's form since Scott Robertson took over for the 2016 season. Mo'unga was incredible against the Bulls in Pretoria - quick, elusive, tough, accurate. I could go on.

Forward of the week

Ardie Savea - Hurricanes


Just when it seemed the Hurricanes flanker was at his peak, Savea goes and puts in another standout performance for his side against the Blues at Eden Park. Quick off the back of the scrum - crucially at times - Savea was inspirational on defence and at the breakdown for his side, who were under pressure for much of the match but delivered when it counted.

World Cup watch

Dalton Papalii - Blues

Dalton Papalii dives over to score for the Blues. Photosport
Dalton Papalii dives over to score for the Blues. Photosport

A glimmer of possibility for the Blues, whose loss to the Hurricanes was their fourth in a row, a result which probably shut the door on their finals hopes this season. Papalii was a brute in the contact areas and a few Hurricanes players will be wearing bruises as a result. And his try when he blew past Beauden Barrett to score in the corner was a classic. He must be in the All Blacks mix.

Trending Up

Sevu Reece (Crusaders)

Reece had a quiet game in last weekend's draw against the Sharks (in front of the All Blacks selectors), but at Loftus Versfeld, he was his exuberant self again, scoring three tries against the Bulls. His third, when he soared to take a Richie Mo'unga cross-kick, highlighted his credentials under the high ball.

The Chiefs appeared to be on track for a regulation win over the Sharks in Hamilton, but the South Africans had other ideas. It meant the home side had to work for it, and in the end, they did it very impressively. Halfback Brad Weber appears key to their continued revival this season.

Trending Down


The tough times continue for the Waratahs and their Kiwi coach Daryl Gibson. While the furore over their fullback Israel Folau rages, the Sydney side keep losing in painful fashion in South Africa. Their 29-28 defeat to the Lions in Jo'burg comes after their 28-21 defeat to the Bulls in Pretoria.


Speaking of tough times, the Blues know all about those, and their coach Leon MacDonald is getting to know them, too. They weren't bad against the Hurricanes, in fact they impressed at times. That's part of their problem - they can't put those good moments together for one consistent 80-minute performance.