Crusaders chase unsettled Ma'a Nonu

00:32, May 20 2012
Blues v Crusaders
Blues centre Rene Ranger on the charge.
Blues v Crusaders
Blues loosehead prop Tom McCartney attempts to charge the kick of Crusaders first five Tyler Bleyendaal.
Blues v Crusaders
Crusaders centre Robbie Fruean dives over to score during against the Blues.
Blues v Crusaders
Crusaders captain Kieran Read is tackled by Blues fullback Isaia Toeava.
Blues v Crusaders
Blues first five Michael Hobbs is tackled by Crusaders second five Ryan Crotty.
Blues v Crusaders
Crusaders captain Kieran Read after a Blues try.
Blues v Crusaders
Blues captain Keven Mealamu in action against the Crusaders.
Blues v Crusaders
Crusaders captain Kieran Read loses his shorts against the Blues.
Blues v Crusaders
Crusaders first five Tyler Bleyendaal is scragged by Blues replacement Brad Mika.
Zac Guildford
Zac Guildord is tackled over the sideline by Highlanders first-five Lima Sopoaga.
George Whitelock
George Whitelock crashes into the Highlanders defence.
Robbie Fruean
Crusaders centre Robbie Fruean makes the mistake of running at Nasi Manu and Adam Thomson.
Sean Maitland
Crusaders wing Sean Maitland skips down the sideline at Forsyth Barr Stadium.
Luke Romano, Jason Rutledge and George Whitelock
Crusaders Luke Romano (left) and George Whitelock put the hit on Highlanders reserve hooker Jason Rutledge.
Tyler Bleyendaal
Young Crusaders No 10 Tyler Bleyendaal releases the ball to his outside backs.
Tim Nanai-Williams and Israel Dagg
Chiefs wing Tim Nanai-Williams passes the ball in-field as he is pushed to the ground by Israel Dagg.
George Whitelock and Liam Messam
Crusaders No 6 George Whitelock brings down a kick-off, under pressure from his Chiefs opposite Liam Messam.
Chiefs v Crusaders gallery
Luke Romano of the Crusaders wins a lineout against the Chiefs at McLean Park.
Chiefs v Crusaders gallery
Tawera Kerr-Barlow of the Chiefs is tackled by Kieran Read of the Crusaders.
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Aaron Cruden of the Chiefs gets a kick away while being tackled against the Crusaders at McLean Park.
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George Whitelock (L) and Corey Flynn of the Crusaders tackle Robbie Robinson of the Chiefs.
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Sean Maitland scores a try against the Cheetahs.
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Crusaders players Sean Maitland's try.
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The new AMI Stadium before the Crusaders' match against the Cheetahs.
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Crusaders halfback Andy Ellis crunched in a Cheetahs tackle.
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Fans at the new Christchurch Stadium in Addington.
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Israel Dagg is wrapped up in the tackle against the Cheetahs.
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Zac Guildford of the Crusaders crosses over to score a try against the Lions at Ellis Park
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Alwyn Hollenbach of the Lions tackled by Robert Fruean of the Crusaders at Ellis Park
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Israel Dagg of the Crusaders tackled by Jaco Taute of the Lions at Ellis Park
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Kieran Read of the Crusaders wins the ball against the Lions at Ellis Park
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Sean Maitland of the Crusaders catches the ball against the Lions at Ellis Park
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Dan Carter of the Crusaders sets up a try against the Lions at Ellis Park.
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Zac Guildford of the Crusaders attacks against the Lions at Ellis Park.
Zac Guildford
Zac Guildford sends a pass out wide during the Crusaders' 32-30 loss in Pretoria.
Luke Whitelock
Luke Whitelock pulls down a lineout throw at Loftus Versfeld.
Morne Steyn and Matt Todd
Crusaders' No 7 Matt Todd attempts to charge down the kick of Morne Steyn.
Israel Dagg and Sean Maitland
Israel Dagg hops in the air to get a pass away in the tackle to team-mate Sean Maitland.
Israel Dagg
Israel Dagg is hauled down by Bulls first-five Morne Steyn.
Crusaders v Stormers
Corey Flynn during the Crusaders match against the Stormers at the AMI Stadium at Addington.
Crusaders v Stormers
Israel Dagg during the Crusaders match against the Stormers at the AMI Stadium at Addington.
Crusaders v Stormers
Crusader Matt Todd in action against the Stormers.
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Crusaders' Dan Carter passes against the Hurricanes.
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Hurricanes' Jeremy Thrush and Crusaders' Kieran Read battle for the ball.
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Crusaders' Wyatt Crockett hits out at Hurricanes' Chris Eaton.
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Crusaders' Andrew Ellis passes against the Hurricanes.
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Crusaders' Ben Franks on the charge against the Hurricanes.
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Crusaders' Israel Dagg is tackled by Hurricanes' Ben May.
Crusaders v Waratahs in Sydney
Robbie Fruean takes time out during the Crusaders' defeat of the Waratahs in Sydney.
Crusaders v Waratahs in Sydney
Crusaders No 8 Kieran Read bursts into space against the Waratahs.
Crusaders v Waratahs in Sydney
Crusaders winger Zac Guildford gets a pass away against the Waratahs.
Crusaders v Waratahs in Sydney
Crusaders centre Robbie Fruean bursts clear for his first try against the Waratahs in Sydney.
Crusaders v Reds
Israel Dagg tackled by Ben Lucas as the Crusaders take on the Reds in Christchurch.
Crusaders v Reds
Kieran Read leads out the Crusaders against the Reds.
Crusaders v Reds
Tom Taylor lines up a kick against the Reds.
Crusaders v Reds
Referee Bryce Lawrence sends off Wyatt Crockett against the Reds.
Crusaders v Reds
Luke Romano on the charge against the Reds.
Crusaders v Reds
Zac Guildford on the charge against the Reds.
Crusaders v Reds
Thomas Tracey, 6, Tom Hearn, 6, Ben Strickland, 6, Tatsumi Konishi, 6, and McNamara Kane, 6 at the game.
Crusaders v Rebels
The Crusaders win a lineout against the Rebels at AAMI Park in Melbourne.
Crusaders v Rebels
Stirling Mortlock of the Rebels celebrates victory at the final whistle against the Crusaders at AAMI Park in Melbourne.
Crusaders v Rebels
Nick Phipps of the Rebels scores a try against the Crusaders at AAMI Park in Melbourne.
Crusaders v Rebels
Gareth Delve of the Rebels runs with the ball against the Crusaders at AAMI Park in Melbourne.
Crusaders v Rebels
Luke Whitelock and Sam Whitelock make a tackle against the Rebels.
Crusaders v Rebels
Andy Ellis prepares to kick against the Rebels.
Crusaders v Rebels
Richie McCaw is tackled against the Rebels.
Hurricanes v Blues
Zac Guildford coming in for a try against the Blues at the new AMI Stadium at Rugby League Park in Christchurch.
Hurricanes v Blues
Zac Guildford is tackled by Angus Ta'avao (top) and Steven Luata of the Blues at the new AMI Stadium at Rugby League Park in Christchurch.
Hurricanes v Blues
Robbie Fruean on attack against the Blues at the new AMI Stadium at Rugby League Park in Christchurch.
Hurricanes v Blues
Dan Carter cool under pressure against the Blues at the new AMI Stadium at Rugby League Park in Christchurch.
Hurricanes v Blues
Tom Marshall grabs a try against the Blues at the new AMI Stadium at Rugby League Park in Christchurch.
Hurricanes v Blues
Robbie Fruean on attack against the Blues at the new AMI Stadium at Rugby League Park in Christchurch.
Crusaders v Highlanders
Richie McCaw covers a cut lip against the Highlanders.
Crusaders v Highlanders
Adam Thompson hits Andy Ellis into touch.
Crusaders v Highlanders
Kieran Read rubs Jarrad Hoeata's face in the dirt.
Crusaders v Highlanders
Wyatt Crockett scores for the Crusdaders.
Crusaders v Highlanders
Ben Smith and Andy Ellis have a punch up.
Crusaders v Highlanders
George Whitelock of the Crusaders gets a yellow card.
Crusaders v Highlanders
Kieran Read of the Crusaders on the charge.
Crusaders v Highlanders
Zac Guildford of the Crusaders goes in for a try.
Hurricanes v Crusaders
Hurricanes players celebrate their win against the Crusaders.
Hurricanes v Crusaders
Crusaders' Richie McCaw gets up-ended going for the high ball.
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Crusader Sean Maitland takes on Hurricane Tim Bateman.
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Crusaders' Wyatt Crockett on the burst.
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Zac Guildford of the Crusaders runs away to score a try against the Hurricanes.
Chiefs v Crusaders
Richie McCaw comes in to tackle Sona Taumalolo.
Chiefs v Crusaders
Israel Dagg takes a high ball in front of Aaron Cruden.
Chiefs v Crusaders
Luke Romano scores for the Crusaders against the Chiefs.
Chiefs v Crusaders
Kieran Read scores for the Crusaders against the Chiefs.
Chiefs v Crusaders
Hika Elliot fends of Israel Dagg.
Israel Dagg
DETERMINED: Israel Dagg just moments before scoring the first try for the Crusaders against the Western Force.
Crusaders v Rebels
Matt Todd scores a try against the Western Force.
Crusaders v Rebels
Crusaders' players celebrate the Matt Todd try against the Western Force.
Crusaders v Rebels
Two captains, Richie McCaw and Nathan Sharpe talk after the match.
Crusaders v Rebels
Israel Dagg scores first try against the Western Force.
Zac Guildford
Zac Guildford streaks away to score against the Bulls.
Richie McCaw
Richie McCaw is held in the tackle by the Bulls.

The Crusaders are making a strong bid to lure All Blacks midfield back Ma'a Nonu to his third Super Rugby home in as many seasons.

Sources indicate that the seven-time champion franchise are keen to add Nonu to boost their midfield stocks for the 2013 season, with the Rugby World Cup winner said to be strongly tempted to make the move.

Nonu is currently playing with the Blues, after making an acrimonious departure from the Hurricanes at the end of the 2011 campaign.

Blues v Crusaders
Blues No.8 Jerome Kaino attempts to score against the Crusaders.
Blues v Crusaders
Blues centre Rene Ranger on the charge.
Blues v Crusaders
Blues loosehead prop Tom McCartney attempts to charge the kick of Crusaders first five Tyler Bleyendaal.
Blues v Crusaders
Crusaders captain Kieran Read is tackled by Blues fullback Isaia Toeava.
Blues v Crusaders
Blues blindside flanker Chris Lowrey and Blues No.8 Jerome Kaino atempt to score against the Crusaders.
Blues v Crusaders
Blues first five Michael Hobbs is tackled by Crusaders second five Ryan Crotty.
Blues v Crusaders
Blues wing David Raikuna celebrates his try with Blues openside flanker Daniel Braid.
Blues v Crusaders
Blues captain Keven Mealamu in action against the Crusaders.
Blues v Crusaders
Blues replacement Piri Weepu in action against the Crusaders.
Blues v Crusaders
Jerome Kaino attempts to charge the kick of Crusaders halfback Andy Ellis.
David Raikuna
The Blues' David Raikuna is tackled during their second round loss against the Chiefs.
Piri Weepu, Aaron Cruden and Jerome Kaino
Piri Weepu and Jerome Kaino of the Blues chase down Aaron Cruden and the ball.
Isaia Toeava
Isaia Toeava of the Blues makes a break during the round two Super Rugby match between the Chiefs and the Blues.
Piri Weepu
Piri Weepu runs at the Chiefs line after coming on as a second half substitute.
Benson Stanley
Benson Stanley passes to his right, under pressure from Sonny Bill Williams.
Michael Hobbs
Blues first-five Michael Hobbs is hit by Sonny Bill Williams after punting the ball downfield.
Blues v Bulls
Jacques Potgieter of the Bulls is tackled by Benson Stanley and Luke Braid of the Blues.
Blues v Bulls
Alby Mathewson of the Blues in action against the Bulls.
Blues v Bulls
Ali Williams of the Blues and Juandre Kruger of the Bulls.
Blues v Bulls
Ma'a Nonu of the Blues is tackled by Morne Steyn of the Bulls.
Blues v Bulls
Rene Ranger of the Blues is tackled by Akona Ndungane of the Bulls.
Blues v Bulls
Wynand Olivier of the Bulls is tackled by Daniel Braid of the Blues.
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Andries Bekker of the Stormers charges the Blues' defence.
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Stormers hooker Tiaan Liebenberg charges the Blues' defence.
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Blues centre Ma'a Nonu finds a gap against the Stormers.
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Chris Lowrey of the Blues passes against the Stormers.
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Stormers flanker Duane Vermeulen wins the lineout dagainst the Blues.
Blues v Hurricanes
Blues lock Ali Williams claims a restart against the Hurricanes.
Blues v Hurricanes
Hurricanes fullback Andre Taylor steps past Blues fullback Lachie Munro as he heads to the try-line.
Blues v Hurricanes
Blues second five eighth Ma'a Nonu dives over to score in the tackle of Hurricanes flanker Jack Lam.
Blues v Hurricanes
Ma'a Nonu of the Blues celebrates with Piri Weepu after scoring a try against the Hurricanes at Eden Park.
Blues v Rebels
Gareth Anscombe of the Blues is hauled in by Rebels defenders during their round seven match.
Blues v Rebels
Ma'a Nonu of the Blues looks to get past James O’Connor of the Rebels.
Blues v Rebels
Ali Williams of the Blues runs with the ball against the Rebels.
Blues v Rebels
Rudi Wulf of the Blues is tackled by Rebels defenders during their round seven match.
Blues v Rebels
James O’Connor of the Rebels celebrates with Mitch Inman after he scored against the Blues.
Blues v Rebels
The Rebels celebrate after they defeated the Blues.
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The Blues are disconsolate after conceding a try to the Sharks.
Blues v Sharks
Blues fans show their support for coach Pat Lam.
Blues v Sharks
Michael Hobbs juggles the ball during the Blues loss to the Sharks.
Blues v Sharks
Ma'a Nonu chases JP Pietersen and the ball during the Blues' loss to the Sharks.
Blues v Sharks
Ma'a Nonu and Gareth Anscombe discuss tactics during the Blues' loss to the Sharks.
Blues v Sharks
Blues players celebrate Benson Stanley's try against the Sharks.
Blues v Highlanders
Highlanders player Hosea Gear about to be tackled by Blues players.
Blues v Highlanders
Highlanders' Jarrad Hoeata tackling Blues' George Moala.
Blues v Highlanders
Blues player Tom McCartney lines up the Highlanders' Adam Thomson.
Blues v Highlanders
Rene Ranger of the Blues dives for the tryline against the Highlanders.
Blues v Highlanders
Tom McCartney of the Blues shows his disappointment after their loss to the Highlanders at Forsyth Barr Stadium.
Blues v Reds
Blues tighthead prop Charlie Faumuina tackled by Reds' Scott Higginbotham.
Blues v Reds
Blues first five Gareth Anscombe tries to escape from Reds centre Digby Ioane.
Blues v Reds
Blues lock Filo Paulo scragged by Reds first five Ben Lucas.
Blues v Reds
Reds centre Digby Ioane runs at Blues second-five Ma'a Nonu.
Hurricanes v Blues
Hurricanes' Karl Lowe on the charge against the Blues.
Hurricanes v Blues
Victor Vito wins the ball over Ma'a Nonu.
Hurricanes v Blues
Cory Jane slips through a Piri Weepu tackle.
Hurricanes v Blues
Blues' Piri Weepu passes against the Hurricanes.
Hurricanes v Blues
Blues centre Ma'a Nonu runs at Lions halfback Ross Cronje.
Hurricanes v Blues
Blues halfback Piri Weepu tries to escape from Lions flanker Grant Hattingh.
Hurricanes v Blues
Blues wing Benson Stanley is tackled by Lions wing Deon Van Rensburg.
Hurricanes v Blues
Blues wing Benson Stanley tries to step Lions fullback Andries Coetzee.
Hurricanes v Blues
Blues second-five Michael Hobbs scores the opening try against the Lions.
Hurricanes v Blues
Referee Angus Gardner issues a yellow card to Deon van Rensburg of the Lions.
Hurricanes v Blues
Blues right wing David Raikuna in action against the Lions.
Hurricanes v Blues
David Raikuna (L) and Ma'a Nonu against the Crusaders at the new AMI Stadium at Rugby League Park in Christchurch.
Hurricanes v Blues
Zac Guildford is tackled by Angus Ta'avao (top) and Steven Luata of the Blues at the new AMI Stadium at Rugby League Park in Christchurch.
Hurricanes v Blues
Robbie Fruean on attack against the Blues at the new AMI Stadium at Rugby League Park in Christchurch.
Hurricanes v Blues
Dan Carter cool under pressure against the Blues at the new AMI Stadium at Rugby League Park in Christchurch.
Blues V Highlanders
Highlanders centre Tamati Ellison is tackled by Blues' second-five Michael Hobbs.
Blues V Highlanders
Blues reserves Piri Weepu, Ma'a Nonu and Ali Williams on the bench against the Highlanders.
Blues V Highlanders
Highlanders left wing Hosea Gear in action against the Blues.
Blues V Highlanders
Blues right wing David Raikuna is scragged by Highlanders halfback Jimmy Cowan.
Blues V Highlanders
Blues tighthead prop Tevita Mailau scores against the Highlanders.
Blues v Chiefs
Rene Ranger sets up the Blues' second try.
Blues v Chiefs
Lachie Munroe scores for the Blues.
Blues v Chiefs
Chiefs and Blues players have a group hug at North Harbour Stadium.
Blues v Chiefs
Blues player Francis Saili is tackled by Chiefs player Sona Taumalolo.
Blues v Force
Francis Saili is tackled by the Force's Nick Cummins.
Blues v Force
Francis Saili fends the Force's Will Tupou.
Blues v Force
Piri Weepu in action against the Force.
Blues v Force
Ma'a Nonu in action against the Force.
Blues v Force
Luke Braid in action against the Force.
Blues v Brumbies
Ma'a Nonu of the Blues is tackled against the Brumbies at Canberra Stadium.
Blues v Brumbies
Alby Mathewson of the Blues kicks the ball against the Brumbies at Canberra Stadium.
Blues v Brumbies
Blues players celebrate after winning their round 18 match against the Brumbies at Canberra Stadium.
Blues v Brumbies
Robbie Coleman of the Brumbies is tackled against the Blues at Canberra Stadium.

But with the Blues' season lurching from bad to worse, it's understood Nonu has been less than settled in Auckland, and may be tempted by the opportunity to play with the quality Crusaders outfit.

The 66-test midfielder, who turns 30 tomorrow, has failed to find his best form with the Blues, but still remains an automatic selection at the highest level.

The Crusaders have lacked game-breaking quality in the No 12 jersey and it's understood they have put a priority on finding some for next season.

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Ma'a Nonu
NEW HOME? Ma'a Nonu is thought to be considering a move to the Crusaders for next season.

Nonu's All Blacks rival Sonny Bill Williams had an outstanding 2011 Super Rugby season at second-five with the Crusaders, but moved to the Chiefs this season, where he has continued to excel.

Nonu refused to answer Sunday Star-Times' questions about his plans for next season, and Crusaders boss Hamish Riach said the organisation never commented on players being recruited until contracts were signed.

But Riach did confirm the Crusaders were already looking at contracting players for next season, even though the current campaign would not end until August.

"You're always planning, thinking ahead and always talking to people," Riach told the Star-Times.

"The contracting window is very long, and those conversations are always going on at appropriate times within the campaign.

"We're continuing to work away, and we're happy where we're at."

Riach also confirmed that the hastily built Addington Stadium had been a salvation for the franchise, who lost their home venue in the February 2011 earthquake.

"It's everything to us. The travels of last year were quite unique and the guys did extraordinarily well. But if they had to repeat that they couldn't have kept performing at any sort of level."

But he also revealed the financial limitations that the 17,500-capacity venue placed on the Crusaders.

"We need to sell out each game to approximately break even. It's a model that does see us survive if we can attract around 17,000 each week which we've managed.

"But in terms of kicking on in any really big way we simply need a bigger stadium."

The Christchurch council closes submissions on its draft annual plan tomorrow, and that includes a proposed new stadium.

"We will be submitting in favour of a rectangular roofed stadium with a capacity around 35,000," said Riach. "Hopefully in somewhere between three to seven years we should be moving into the best stadium in the country."

Riach also confirmed both Canterbury and Crusaders rugby were still discussing business interruption claims with insurance companies.

"We hope once those are resolved, if we can keep our nose above water with the new stadium, we will get through this most trying of periods in reasonable shape."

Sunday Star Times