Liam Messam gutted for injured NZ Sevens team mate

Former All Black Liam Messam is on his way to join the New Zealand Sevens team in Rio after being given the late call-up by coach Sir Gordon Tietjens overnight.

Teddy Stanaway has been ruled out of the Olympics after breaking his hand against the United States in a warm up match last week.

"I was just at home and got a weird phone call from Tietj pretty late at night, I think it was midnight, he must've just landed in Rio," said Messam.

Taranaki player Lewis Ormond has replaced Stanaway with Messam leaving Auckland today venturing to Brazil, added to the squad as injury cover.

"He (Tietjens) asked if I was fit and I told him I was fit," Messam said.

"At the moment I am feeling for my mate Teddy. He has trained his butt off to get to where he was."

The New Zealand men's Sevens team's campaign kicks off next Wednesday morning against Japan.

But the former All Black admits he feels for his injured Sevens team-mate Teddy Stanaway. Source: 1 NEWS

Humble Rieko Ioane not targeting All Blacks' try scoring record: 'I'm just enjoying what I'm doing'

All Blacks winger Rieko Ioane says he's not motivated by Doug Howlett's all-time try scoring record, having re-signed with New Zealand Rugby yesterday.

Ioane, 21, has scored 18 tries from 18 Test appearances and would appear likely to overtake Howlett's record of 49 tries in 62 Tests, if he were to stay fit and represent the All Blacks for the majority of his professional career.

However, speaking at Auckland Airport as the All Blacks departed for Argentina yesterday, Ioane said that the prospect of writing his name into the record books played no part in his decision to stay in New Zealand.

"It's different for everyone, but I just want to keep playing good footy, consistent footy," he said.

"Hopefully, if I keep doing that, then things take care of itself.

"I'm just enjoying what I'm doing. My sole focus is having fun and being consistent."

The young winger is on course to eclipse Doug Howlett's all-time record. Source: 1 NEWS



'I'm a proud Aucklander' – Rieko Ioane targets Blues' return to glory with new NZ Rugby deal

All Blacks winger Rieko Ioane says the desire to see the Blues return to the top of Super Rugby was a key factor in his decision to remain with New Zealand Rugby as he signed a four-year deal.

Ioane, 21, and brother Akira both put pen to paper on new contracts with the elder Ioane recommitting to New Zealand Rugby for an extra three years.

However, with the Blues not having won Super Rugby since 2003, Ioane said that helping his boyhood club back to glory was a huge motivation in his decision to stay.

"We look forward to the challenge it brings," Ioane said.

"Being from Auckland, something that we hold dear to our hearts is taking our franchise, our city to places where it should be.

"We want to see it at the top, and hopefully if we're part of it it'll be something special."

Ioane also spoke about the prospect of turning down other New Zealand Super Rugby franchises.

"There's always going to be that temptation, but for me, the huge factor is being at home.

"I'm a proud Aucklander, and I just want to inspire the change that gets us to where we need to get to."

The All Blacks winger re-signed with New Zealand Rugby today. Source: 1 NEWS



Waikato notch half-century in eight-try romp over Bay of Plenty Steamers

Waikato have continued their surge towards promotion to the Mitre 10 Cup Premiership, destroying Bay of Plenty 54-21 in an eight-try demolition in Rotorua.

Having lost their first three games of the 2018 season, Jono Gibbes' side are now unbeaten in their last four, sitting comfortably atop the Mitre 10 Cup Championship table.

Lock James Tucker opened the scoring after just 10 minutes, before Waikato raced out to a 21-0 lead.

The Steamers would get one back before the break though, as Hugh Blake crashed over to see the hosts down 21-7 at the halftime break.

In the second half though, it was all Waikato.

The Mooloos ran in another five tries, coming to Samisoni Taukei'aho, Quinn Tupaea - who grabbed a double, Sekope Lopeti-Moli and Matthew Lansdown to seal the comfortable win.

Waikato are next in action in a Ranfurly Shield challenge next Saturday, while Bay of Plenty host Manawatu on Thursday.

The Mooloos were too good, surging to a 54-21 victory in Rotorua. Source: SKY


'Mum and dad will be stoked' - Ioane brothers thrilled to re-sign with NZ Rugby

All Blacks winger Rieko Ioane has hailed the influence of older brother Akira, as the pair today recommitted to New Zealand Rugby for another four years.

Rieko, 21, and Akira, 23, both put pen to paper on new deals, deciding to remain within New Zealand for the foreseeable future.

Speaking to media at Auckland Airport, Rieko spoke about the pair's decisions to stay at home in New Zealand.

"We've been lucky enough to play together for so long," he said.

"I'm pretty happy that both Aki and I are staying around home for a bit longer.

"I'm sure mum and dad will be stoked as well."

Both Rieko and Akira Ioane have penned new deals to stay in NZ. Source: 1 NEWS