HUR­RI­CANES RE­CRUIT­MENT BAL­ANCE

NZ Rugby World - - Super Rugby 2018 -

A bit like the Cru­saders, their trad­ing has been be­low the radar – no ma­jor names have come or gone and that means they are close to be­ing the same squad as they were last year in terms of po­ten­tial and abil­ity.

They have signed Asafo Au­mua, who would be one of the most ex­cit­ing prospects in the coun­try, but we won’t get too car­ried away as with Dane Coles and Ricky Ric­citelli also on the books, when ex­actly is this young hooker go­ing to play?

WHAT CAN WE EX­PECT TAC­TI­CALLY?

Again, like the Cru­saders, we can’t imag­ine the Hur­ri­canes feel they have to rein­vent the wheel tac­ti­cally in 2018.

They have a pack that can win the ball and they have enough ball car­ri­ers in it to clunk around in all the sorts of places where they should be.

The key to their sea­son will be how much in­flu­ence can TJ Per­e­nara and Beau­den Bar­rett have each week? Can they pull the right strings, put the ball in the right places and make sure that the likes of Coles, Ardie Savea, Vince Aso, Ngani Laumape and Nehe Mil­ner-Skud­der are given the space they need to rip teams open?

GUT FEEL – RISERS OR FALL­ERS?

Mar­ginal risers just be­cause they are a year older and a year wiser. Bar­rett is in such a good place men­tally and will be hun­gry to win an­other ti­tle and there is so much abil­ity to run with the ball and beat de­fend­ers across the team.

WHERE WILL THEY FIN­ISH?

Close. Oh so close. They may even top the New Zealand Con­fer­ence and have home ad­van­tage in the play­offs. But, and we don’t want to be spe­cific, some­thing will hap­pen that will go against them and they will come up ag­o­nis­ingly short. Wow, that sounds mys­te­ri­ous.

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