Discipline a key focus for Blues in Wellington
Recoiling from the lessons dished out by the Brumbies, the Blues have had plenty to ponder ahead of the high-flying Hurricanes DHL Super Rugby Pacific game in Wellington on Saturday.
Discipline, defence and lineout work were on the list of requirements to take on the unbeaten Hurricanes.
Lineout coach Paul Tito said, "We've got a lot to work on, our discipline was poor early in that game, and you can't allow a Brumbies' team entries into the 22 like that when we know how good they are in that set piece stuff.
"We need to be better as our crew, get our stuff right and be more aggressive in that space."
Tito said he felt the Blues would be better for the lessons they were given in the game.
Tito didn't think the Hurricanes would suffer too much from the suspension-enforced absence of Ardie Savea. Having coached with the Hurricanes, Tito said he knew that Peter Lakai was a highly-promising player in his place.
"They'll be coming for us and they will do what they do well and that is being really physical and challenging our forwards so we need to be on our game."
He said that teams looking at their Brumbies effort would look at the Blues as fragile defensively, and they had looked hard at the details and worked hard at how they could be better in that space.
Round 3 is coming in HOT! Catch the team lists and big stories ⬇️— Super Rugby Pacific (@SuperRugby) March 10, 2023
Hooker Ricky Riccitelli said there had been an extra edge around training this week. There was some accountability in their review, which was reflected in training.
He said the Hurricanes have a good forward pack, even without Savea.
"They're all there for a reason. They've got plenty of young players and they have a lot of talent so we're preparing for a big challenge."
For the Blues, it was a case of working on their processes and the basics of the game and trusting them.
"It's a bit faster out there, there's a bit more ball-in-play. It's good for the game I think – a bit tougher on the lungs, but really good."
Riccitelli said lineout defence was getting better with more competitive play in lineouts.
"There's a whole lot of time being put into reading lineout attacks and stuff. There's special players in the team who focus on that area and get the boys to do their homework so we can pick some ball."
The Blues take on the Hurricanes at 7.05pm on Saturday at Sky Stadium in Wellington.
Up for the challenge 🔥 pic.twitter.com/terPcfEzMp— The Blues (@BluesRugbyTeam) March 9, 2023