Luatua to lead Blues

Steven Luatua has replaced the injured Jerome Kaino as Blues captain for the remainder of the season.

Kaino has a broken finger, with Luatua expected to fill the void in the back row and in terms of leadership.

Luatua has struggled for form over the past two seasons and coach John Kirwan will be hoping the added responsibility will help him rediscover the form that made him an All Black in 2013.

Luatua admits he's disappointed for Kaino, but he's grateful for the opportunity provided by Kirwan.

'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 [Keven Mealamu] but he [Kirwan] believes this is the best direction to head in so I will give it my best shot.'

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