Umaga happy with ‘ugly win’

Date published: April 17 2016

Blues head coach Tana Umaga is happy with his side’s 23-18 win over the Sharks although he feels they still have plenty of room for improvement.

The two-time champions were under the cosh for large periods at Eden Park but secured victory but secured victory late in the second half thanks to a superb individual try from teenage wing Rieko Ioane.

“I’m happy with that win although it was ugly,” said Umaga.

“The guys got the job done and we adjusted well in the second half structurally to what is a very strong and very good Sharks team.”

“We have a lot of work still to go but we will take that win and now use the bye week to keep working.”

There was plenty of emotion with the match celebrating the 1996 Blues Super Rugby final win over the Sharks, with players from that team flanking the tunnel as the Blues ran on to the field.

Added to that was the remembrance of former Blues lock Kurtis Haiu who passed away this week after a long battle with cancer.

“We probably didn’t handle the emotion of that as well as we should,” said Blues captain James Parsons.

“It took us a while to settle down and get our patterns right.”