Tackling rugby's hot topics

George Moala's form for the Blues should have Steve Hansen at least taking notes.

From Jordie Barrett to the Welly Sevens, rugby writer Marc Hinton gets to grips with the big issues in NZ.

Lions will pick Farrell as a No 10 and Te'o could be a bolter

Owen Farrell (left) and Jonathan Davies could both find themselves in the Lions backline.

OPINION: Warren Gatland's Lions will play but not until they win the gainline, writes Paul Cully.

Welcome to the furnace, Eddie

England coach Eddie Jones is a master of the diversion.

OPINION: Months of All Blacks noise at an end as the outsmarted England coach prepares to face the fire.

Reason: England's flaws exposed

The referee blows the whistle at full time as Ireland beat England 13-9.

OPINION: You could hear it in the swell of defiant song rolling down from the stands. It was over.

The 1971 Lions team was about as beautiful as a punch in the face

Lions No 10 Barry John kicks the ball against the All Blacks in Auckland in 1971.

OPINION: With the Lions' tour closing in brace yourself for a barrage of bull from the north, writes Phil Gifford.

NZ masters of 'Great Escape' video

Skipper Sam Whitelock and Crusaders team-mates celebrate Mitchell Drummond's late try against the Blues.

OPINION: A movie classic and a NZ rugby art form, Kiwis know how to get the job done.

Keep the men from the ACT

The Brumbies, who have won two Super Rugby titles, celebrate after their 2004 final victory over the Crusaders.

OPINION: Don't even think about axing the Brumbies from Super Rugby, writes Paul Cully.

Super Rugby's hot topics

Dominic Bird has risen to the challenge for the the Chiefs in Super Rugby so far.

Blues on the brink? What's got Steve Hansen worried? Rugby writer Marc Hinton tackles five big topics heading into the weekend.

Circus feel to ABs v England video

All Blacks flanker Jerome Kaino rips through the English defence during one of four New Zealand wins against England in 2014.

OPINION: Proposed clash risks turning into Mayweather v McGregor, writes Duncan Johnstone.

Draw a blight on Super Rugby

It didn't take long for folk to jump off the Blues' bandwagon.

OPINION: Got a franchise or three in mind to cut? Well, you're an ordinary team, so you deserve to go.

Barrett to fullback for Lions?

Beauden Barrett struggled with the conditions in Hamilton last Friday.

OPINION: With Cruden showing his playmaking class, Barrett may be better utilised at fullback.

The rise of England

Danny Care scores a try in England's Six Nations title-clinching win over Scotland at Twickenham.

Worst ever southern hemisphere rugby making the ABs look good as England come of age, writes Mark Reason.

Why NZ should cheer England

All Blacks fans go wild in a London fan zone during the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

OPINION: The All Blacks, complete with smug and dismissive fans, have had it their way for too long.

Lions tour lure drives Kiwis

Aaron Cruden's passing skills have impressed former Wallabies fullback Matthew Burke.

OPINION: The Lions are coming - and the chasm between NZ and Australian sides is wide.

Highlanders win ugly video

Rene Ranger and the Blues struggled for much of a frustrating night against the Highlanders on Eden park.

OPINION: On a night of mediocre fare, the southerners did enough to get the result they needed.

Aussies face bankruptcy

ARU CEO Bill Pulver is at war with the grassroots of the game across the ditch.

OPINION: The Australian Rugby Union is stuffed no matter what it does, writes Mark Reason.

Retallick, Meads best ABs locks

Light Training before the team training? Certainly not. Few pictures better illustrate the dedicacation to rugby of ...

OPINION: The Chiefs enforcer has moved ahead of Andy Haden, writes Phil Gifford.

Super Rugby hot topics

Will Ngani Laumape and the Hurricanes still be No 1 after their round three clash against the Chiefs in Hamilton?

Rugby writer Marc Hinton tackles five talking points for round three of Super Rugby.

Are England worthy of record?

All Blacks captain Kieran Read congratulates Ireland opposite Rory Best after the team's winning streak came to an end.

OPINION: Hamish Bidwell and Liam Napier debate whether England deserve to claim test wins record.

Mon dieu, rugby in Paris is different

Stade Francais hooker Aled De Malmanche now boasts an impressive beard.

OPINION: In Paris for a swift visit, Wellingtonian Gerry Morris finds considerable off the field differences to New Zealand rugby.

Aus, SA problems threaten NZ rugby

Hurricanes blindside Brad Shields makes another break against a poor Melbourne Rebels side last weekend.

OPINION: New Zealand should be more concerned about Sanzaar partners' rugby woes, writes Paul Cully.

Highlanders hang by a thread

Malakai Fekitoa and the Highlanders have to shrug off their bad luck, and find a way to start winning rugby games.

Forget the excuses, it's time for Tony Brown's men to come up with solutions, writes Marc Hinton.

Rugby needs 'on report' system

Are too many yellow cards robbing rugby fans of a contest?

OPINION: Should yellow and red cards remain in rugby?

Chiefs show a mean streak

Aaron Cruden was at his creative and combative best against the Blues in Hamilton.

OPINION: The Blues were struggling even before Steven Luatua was ordered off, writes Phil Gifford.

Lions need a leader

Wales back-rower Sam Warburton has played his way back into form and is a contender to lead the Lions again.

OPINION: The Lions must find a man who can fend off the slings and arrows they will find in New Zealand.

NZ poaching myth exposed

Teimana Harrison and Dylan Hartley are part of growing number of southern hemisphere players representing Six Nations sides.

OPINION: England's whinging about Pacific Island rugby pillaging is now laughable.

The perilous sporting afterlife

Former Wallabies lock Dan Vickerman.

ANALYSIS: Phones stop ringing, the belly grows, darkness descends. A chat and a hug won't always fix it.

Sunwolves on borrowed time

Julian Savea and the Hurricanes made short work of the Sunwolves in Tokyo in the opening round of Super Rugby.

How soon before Sanzaar wonders about the wisdom of its decision to expand into Japan, writes Marc Hinton.

Williams undermines ABs legacy

Ali Williams: not just a silly boy.

OPINION: When an All Black lands in hot water, it's no laughing matter, writes Kevin Norquay.

Give Smith the time he needs

Ben Smith receives medical treatment during the Highlanders v Chiefs game on Friday.

OPINION: There should be no rush to get the Highlanders fullback into action, writes Phil Gifford.

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