Former Auckland and Blues rugby player Kurtis Haiu has passed away after a prolonged battle with cancer. He was 31.
Haiu, who played 53 times for the Blues between 2006 and 2011, died earlier this afternoon surrounded by his family in hospice care in Manurewa. He leaves behind wife Frieda and two young daughters.
Blues captain Jerome Kaino, who played alongside Haiu, paid tribute to his former teammate.
"Kurtis loved his girls so much and our love and prayers go out to them and the Haiu family," Kaino said. "Kurtis fought such a brave battle to be with them for as long as he could, which was typical of his character.