Super Rugby Pacific: Ardie Savea to captain Hurricanes again

The Hurricanes have announced that experienced All Blacks loose forward Ardie Savea will continue in his role as their captain for the 2023 Super Rugby Pacific season.

Savea will make his 120th appearance for the Hurricanes when they kick off their campaign against the Reds in Townsville on February 25, and this will be the third successive season that he skippers the Wellington-based franchise.

The 29-year-old is set to play in his 11th campaign for the Hurricanes and is excited by the prospect of leading the team in 2023.

“I’m really looking forward to the season, especially getting out to the communities, when we play Levin against the Crusaders for our preseason [match], and also Palmerston North against the Western Force,” Savea told the Hurricanes’ official website.

“We’ve just moved into our new facility, and there’s something awesome about change; it’s brought in a lot of energy. It’s refreshing to come in and be in a new space, alongside other professional teams. Hopefully being here can help us move forward and help us prepare well for our games.”

Versatile leader

Savea, who can play in all three back-row positions, made his Super Rugby debut for the Hurricanes against the Waratahs in 2013 and was part of their team when they won the tournament in 2016.

He made his All Blacks Test debut that same year and went on to lead the men in black during their victorious Rugby Championship campaign in 2021.

Hurricanes head coach Jason Holland hailed Savea’s leadership qualities and is thrilled to have him captain the side once again.

“Ardie is a special leader. He’s the sort of guy you just want to follow in whatever he does, and he’s worked hard at his leadership around all the small details, around how to get the best out of the people around him,” he said.

“He’s been really good at driving us as a group, players and management, about being well planned and really clear in our roles in what we’re leading.

“Ards has a great relationship with all the boys, he cares pretty deeply about the boys and the team, and that really shows in the way that he leads.”

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