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Prime Minister Luxon rallies Crusaders fans amid Super Rugby struggles

Prime Minister Christopher Luxon, a devout supporter of the Crusaders, is rallying fans to maintain their faith despite the team’s unprecedented struggles in the Super Rugby Pacific league.

With only one victory from eight matches, the Crusaders find themselves in the unaccustomed position of bottom dwellers after dominating the league with seven consecutive titles.

Following their recent 37-15 defeat to the Western Force, Crusaders’ flanker Tom Christie acknowledged the team’s offensive prowess but emphasized the need to shore up their defensive efforts.

“We know we can attack, we know you’ve got game-breakers and we know we can string together enough phases to score some amazing tries, so from there we just need to work on making that happen more often and obviously, at the other end, not letting them in as easy.”

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In the face of mounting criticism and doubt, Luxon remained a pillar of unwavering support for the Crusaders, urging fans to persevere through the challenging times.

“Keep the faith, it’s not over until it’s over,” Luxon told reporters post-cabinet today, echoing the sentiments of a loyal fan base accustomed to success. “Yes, it’s been a disappointing run so far, but we’re just warming up. Trust us, we’ll get there to the playoffs.”

Luxon’s steadfast belief in the Crusaders’ ability to weather the storm was unwavering, emphasizing their resilience and determination to overcome adversity.

“We win nice or we win ugly, but we win because it’s the story of the Crusaders and that will continue I’m sure,” Luxon declared, encapsulating the team’s indomitable spirit.

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When pressed about the team’s need to prioritize outcomes, Luxon exuded confidence in their ability to deliver results when it matters most.

“Don’t you worry, they’re going to get there. They’ll be focused on delivery and results.”

It comes as Luxon and Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee unveiled a revised Three Strikes law, which was abolished under the Labor Government.

Luxon said the Government has a target to have 20,000 fewer victims of violent crime by 2029.

The new legislation would cover the same 40 serious violent and sexual offenses as the former legislation, with the addition of the new strangulation and suffocation offense.

It would also only apply to sentences above 24 months. There would also be a mechanism to allow judicial discretion not to impose the mandatory sentence or parole requirements when it would be “manifestly unjust to do so”, McKee said.

McKee said there would be a “limited benefit” for those offenders who made guilty pleas, as it would therefore not require a victim to go through a court trial.

McKee said she would take a draft bill and paper to Cabinet by the end of June, and to introduce the bill to the House soon after that. It was her intention the bill would come into force six months after it passed through the House to account for necessary changes to IT systems for example.

Luke Kirkness is an Online Sports Editor for the NZ Herald. He previously covered consumer affairs for the Herald and was an assistant news director in the Bay of Plenty. He won Student Journalist of the Year in 2019.

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