Steven Luatua will captain the Blues for the remainder of the Super Rugby season in the absence of the injured Jerome Kaino.
All Black Kaino was ruled out for the remainder of the campaign because of a broken finger, leaving a gap to fill both in terms of leadership, and in the back-row.
Luatua, who has 14 All Black caps, had lost his spot in the starting side to youngster Akira Ioane, but Sir John Kirwan has given him the nod to take over from Kaino.
And while Luatua admits he was disappointed for Kaino, he was very grateful for the trust shown in him by Kirwan, with the likes of Keven Mealamu among the other candidates for the job.
"I was a bit in shock and left for words. I am really humbled and at the same time gutted about the injury to Jerome," said Luatua.
"Growing up as a kid in the region, this is something you aspire to. We still have Kevie but he believes this is the best direction to head in so I will give it my best shot."