Good on the Blues if they're chasing Beauden Barrett. They will never win a Super Rugby title without a word class first-five.

All the New Zealand teams that have won were driven by a dominating player at 10.

Carlos Spencer when the Blues began in 1996 and 1997, Andrew Mehrtens at the Crusaders for four titles, Dan Carter at the Crusaders for three, Richie Mo'unga for two so far.


Add in Aaron Cruden at the Chiefs in 2012 and 2013, and Barrett at the Hurricanes in 2016.

First-fives have always played a crucial role in a top-level team, and