Clarke off to Ireland

RICHARD FERGUSON updates followers of the latest Super Rugby news from New Zealand.

Chiefs lose co-captain

Craig Clarke will leave the Chiefs at the end of the Super Rugby season to further his career in Ireland, having signed a three year deal with Connacht.

Clarke lifted the Super Rugby trophy last year after his team beat the Sharks in the final in Hamilton, becoming the third New Zealand team to lift the cup.

Clarke’s form last year resulted in a call up to the All Blacks training squad and was named Chiefs Players’ Player of the Year and was one of three finalists for Super Rugby player of the year.

Savea misses start of season

The Hurricanes will have to make do without flanker Ardie Savea for the first four weeks of Super Rugby after he was suspended for a dangerous tackle on Chiefs player Augustine Pulu over the weekend.

Savea was cited for a lifting tackle during the Hurricanes’ preseason match against the Chiefs on Saturday, which the Chiefs won 25 – 21.

Savea has been suspended for four weeks considering the player has a clean record and the tackle was clumsy with elements of recklessness.