Here’s a public service announcement for you: there are only three weeks of Super Rugby Aotearoa left. Lap it up.
Because what are the chances we’re ever going to see a competition like this again?
I think by now we’ve all realised we are getting some pretty special, consistently good rugby.
But if you needed proof that you’re not just imagining it, look at the toll it’s taking on the players’ bodies.
This week, the player’s association has pointed out just how physically intense these games are. As a result we have quite a long list of injured players: Braydon Ennor, David Havili, Ethan Blackadder, Scott Barrett, Cullen Grace. That’s just injured Crusaders. Otere Black, Ngani Laumape, Tyrel Lomax, Vaea Fifita, Fraser Armstrong, Peter Umaga-Jensen and the list goes on.
The Players Assocaition says players are playing almost test level rugby each week.
Normally, in super rugby, yeah they’d have these match ups but not week after week. normally, they’d get a break by playing some of the offshore teams that don’t bring it to this level.
How good has this been for us as fans?
It’s genuinely exciting to watch games where, for the most part, it could go either way every week.
And we’re rewarding the teams for that.
Sports director Matt Brown pointed out to me today people are building their weekends around this competition at the moment. We know when the games are – 7:05pm on Saturday, 3:35pm on Sunday – and plenty of us are making sure we keep those appointments.
This can’t go on forever. Rugby’s got to earn a buck and it won’t do that with New Zealand teams just palying each other every year. So this is more than likely a once off. Enjoy it. It’s been great.