- Publish Date
- Wednesday, 7 June 2017, 9:20AM
The Blues match against the British and Irish Lions is going to be extra special tonight with words their haka will pay tribute to their fallen heroes.
Blues high performance manager Tony Hanks said the decision to commission their own haka was inspired by the deaths of Lomu and Haiu.
Lomu began his Super Rugby career with the Blues in 1996. The All Blacks legend died at the age of 40 in 2015 from a heart attack.
Haiu played 53 times for the Blues between 2006 and 2011. He died at the age of 31 last year after a prolonged battle with cancer.
"We realised we had something missing when we lost a couple of really important players from here - Kurtis Haiu and Jonah Lomu," revealed Hanks, a former Wasps and Sale head coach who has been the Blues' high-performance manager since 2014.
"With New Zealand and the way we mourn, you have the haka or a song. So we felt we had something missing and we needed something to represent us.
"We had one of our local boys that played for our development side a bit who played for Auckland come up and he worked closely with Tana (Umaga, the Blues head coach) to capture things around the area.
"This is an aspirational piece for us with the big crowd, and performing the haka for the first time. These guys have got a big responsibility and we take that seriously.
The Blues' haka is called He Toa Takitini (The Strength of Many), to reflect the many cultures in the squad.
- This article was first published on nzherald.co.nz and is republished here with permission.