When it comes to laying down a marker for the year against SA’s greatest rivals, national director of rugby Rassie Erasmus could not have asked for a better start to the post-World Cup Super Rugby season.

The Super Rugby picture tends to come into definition slowly, as you’d expect in an 18-week league phase. But if there has been anything revelatory in the opening fortnight it has come in the form of a reminder to those of us who were unaware or who had forgotten that it is not just SA teams that have lost players to the northern hemisphere or to retirement.

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