Planet Rugby

Smith wants Nonu back at 'Canes

15th July 2014 11:23

Share:

CONRAD SMITH MA'A NONU

Set to be reunited: Conrad Smith and Ma'a Nonu

Hurricanes captain Conrad Smith wants All Blacks team-mate Ma'a Nonu back at the franchise but feels his return must be managed right.

Nonu, and former Hurricanes skipper Andrew Hore, were axed by coach Mark Hammett following a turbulent 2011 season.

That was Hammett's first year in charge following his move from the Crusaders. It was the start of sweeping cultural change the former All Blacks hooker began implementing after revealing the franchise had been in a "real mess" when he arrived.

Hammett has left the Hurricanes after a four-year stint and his move to the Cardiff Blues means Nonu is now able to return to his home franchise after recent stints with the Blues and Highlanders.

But Smith feels that should be handled right as the team has made great strides in improving their culture since Nonu's departure.

"I don't think anything is signed off," Smith told Sportal.

"He's a good mate of mine and I've played a lot of rugby with him. It will be good for the team but it has to be managed right.

"There is a process to go through and if he's a good fit for the Hurricanes... We had the same discussions last year and Hammett was keen to have those discussions but didn't think the timing was right. But he was happy to look at it again this year.

"It's not a personality thing (with Nonu). It's how he fits into the Hurricanes and if we're ready for it. Personally I'd love to have him alongside me again."

"Bringing a player that influential back into the team we have to make sure the whole team is happy with it.

"I'm not saying anyone's not... in fact from what I've heard everyone is positive. It is a big decision and that's why you have to go through and make sure everyone is okay."

Smith has spoken to Nonu about returning and the Hurricanes' new culture and he believes his All Blacks midfield partner would buy into how things were now being done off the field.

"Hopefully he sees how much it has changed when he's back as well," added Smith.

"But I think Ma'a has changed a fair bit in that time too.

"If the stars align and everything works out I think it will be great for the club to have him back in the Hurricanes playing really well."

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , October 3
Bath vs SaracensBath vs Saracens Preview
Saturday , October 4
London Irish vs Northampton15:00
Harlequins vs London Welsh15:00
Gloucester vs Leicester15:15
Sunday , October 5
Sale Sharks vs Wasps14:00
Newcastle vs Exeter15:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
Rugby Championship
Saturday , October 4
South Africa vs New Zealand17:05
Argentina vs Australia19:40
More Rugby Championship fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , October 3
Connacht vs Cardiff BluesConnacht vs Cardiff Blues Preview
Ulster vs EdinburghUlster vs Edinburgh Preview
Zebre vs OspreysZebre vs Ospreys Preview
Saturday , October 4
Leinster vs Munster18:30
Sunday , October 5
Benetton Treviso vs Glasgow14:00
Scarlets vs Newport Gwent D'gons16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Friday , October 3
Oyonnax vs ToulonOyonnax vs Toulon Preview
Saturday , October 4
Bordeaux-Begles vs Clermont Auvergne14:45
Racing Metro Paris vs Brive18:30
Bayonne vs Montpellier18:30
La Rochelle vs Lyon18:30
Castres vs Grenoble18:30
Toulouse vs Stade Francais20:45
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , October 3
Sharks vs LionsSharks vs Lions Preview
Pumas vs Blue BullsPumas vs Blue Bulls Preview
Saturday , October 4
Cheetahs vs Western Province14:00
Griquas vs Eastern Province Kings15:00
More Currie Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
ITM Cup
Thursday , October 2
Auckland 60 - 19 WaikatoAuckland vs Waikato Report
Wednesday, October 1
Hawkes Bay 36 - 14 WellingtonHawkes Bay vs Wellington Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , September 28
Wasps 35 - 18 NewcastleWasps vs Newcastle Report
Exeter 36 - 13 HarlequinsExeter vs Harlequins Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Newport Gwent D'gons 33 - 15 Benetton TrevisoNewport Gwent D
More Guinness PRO12 results
ITM Cup
Tasman 32 - 24 OtagoTasman vs Otago Report
Canterbury 26 - 28 SouthlandCanterbury vs Southland Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , September 27
Leicester 19 - 22 London IrishLeicester vs London Irish Report
Saracens 40 - 19 Sale SharksSaracens vs Sale Sharks Report
Northampton 31 - 24 BathNorthampton vs Bath Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Rugby Championship
South Africa 28 - 10 AustraliaSouth Africa vs Australia Report
Argentina 13 - 34 New ZealandArgentina vs New Zealand Report
More Rugby Championship results
Guinness PRO12
Zebre 13 - 6 UlsterZebre vs Ulster Report
Munster 14 - 19 OspreysMunster vs Ospreys Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Top 14
Toulon 40 - 17 MontpellierToulon vs Montpellier Report
Grenoble 27 - 25 Racing Metro ParisGrenoble vs Racing Metro Paris Report
Brive 34 - 24 Bordeaux-Begles
Oyonnax 8 - 19 Clermont Auvergne
Stade Francais 43 - 10 La Rochelle
Lyon 28 - 18 Castres
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Sharks 53 - 24 Eastern Province KingsSharks vs Eastern Province Kings Report
Griquas 8 - 46 LionsGriquas vs Lions Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Waikato 20 - 22 ManawatuWaikato vs Manawatu Report
North Harbour 28 - 25 Hawkes Bay
Counties Manukau 55 - 7 WellingtonCounties Manukau vs Wellington Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens418
2Northampton416
3Bath415
4Exeter414
5Wasps411