Beauden Barrett Super Rugby: Blues best chance for success in a decade is right now

Beauden Barrett This is one elegant ingredient.

Beauden Barrett The Blues have long played fifth fiddle in the loaded New Zealand conference.

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The Blues have long played fifth fiddle in the loaded New Zealand conference.

OPINION: Distractions, injuries, an assault charge and senior players departing has opened the door for the Blues to fly into 2020 under the radar and make a long overdue splash.

Leon McDonald believes it takes a coach “about three years” to get a side to where they want it to be. But he doesn’t have three years.

The time to strike is now, as the Blues enter this coming season with their best chance at making a deep finals run in more than a decade.

Beauden Barrett Scott Barrett will captain the Crusaders.

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Scott Barrett will captain the Crusaders.

And it’s not just due to the pending arrival of Beauden Barrett, though that won’t hurt.

No instead the door is ever-so-slightly ajar because of the many issues the rest of the Kiwi franchises are currently battling, while the underdog Blues plot away with no expectations.

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Highlanders, Blues coaches explain their squad selections at a launch in Auckland.

Let’s start with the champion Crusaders.

They’re always going to be a strong side, it’s what they do.

But never before (at least not in recent memory) have the mighty Cantabrians entered a Super Rugby campaign with this many question marks hanging over the side.

Beauden Barrett Jordie Barrett is an option, but not a front runner for the vacant Hurricanes 10 jumper.

Jordie Barrett is an option, but not a front runner for the vacant Hurricanes 10 jumper.

A wealth of experience and quality has left the building.

No Sam Whitelock, Kieran Read, Owen Franks, Ryan Crotty, Tim Bateman, Matt Todd or Jordan Taufua.

Most sides would take years to recover from such an exodus, but the Crusaders’ next man up mentality will certainly ensure they remain a force.

Beauden Barrett Jackson Garden-Bachop could be the Hurricanes new number 10.

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Jackson Garden-Bachop could be the Hurricanes new number 10.

But add to that the off-field distraction surrounding head coach Scott Robertson, and all of a sudden you have a recipe for hardship.

The vacant All Blacks job is all anyone is talking about, his good mate MacDonald even saying he felt sorry for Razor, as he tries to juggle a new Super campaign and prepare

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