Blues veterans bow out together

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Lynn McConnell     13 Jun 2015     Getty Images

Mealamu had the luxury of a standing ovation from the 9500 fans who braved the wintry weather conditions while the injured Woodcock joined Mealamu in being applauded off the field by both their team-mates and their Highlander opponents.

On the back of a 7-44 loss it was not the best of farewell presents after what was the worst Blues season in Super Rugby.

Mealamu said he would like to see the Blues turns their fortunes around really quickly.

"It is really tough at the moment with all that we are going through so let's just make sure these lessons over the last couple of years are for a reason and we bounce back really quickly," he said.

Woodcock said the most disappointing thing for him was the lack of return for all the hard work the side had put in this year.

"You can't say we haven't tried our guts out and trying to think of new things and working really hard. It's just disappointing to see that the results haven't followed that," he said.

It was a case of working hard, trusting in what the side believed in and committing to it, he said. And he had no doubt an improvement would come.

Woodcock said his shoulder injury was a six-week stand down and he was two weeks away from playing again. He had targeted New Zealand's Test with Samoa for his return.

"I'm looking forward to whatever lies ahead from now on," he said.

Woodcock said he was disappointed he wasn't able to run out onto Eden Park with Mealamu for the last time in the Blues jersey.

Mealamu said: "It was odd not packing down with this man [Woodcock] for the last time. We were just looking at the names on the honours board of the guys who have played for this jersey and probably me and Woody have been lucky enough to play with 95 percent of them.

"It's really gutting that it had to finish like this but we have had some really special moments together and it will be a friendship that lasts past this rugby field."

Woodcock said he had been weighing up his decision for half the season but it was only in the past week that he decided it was time to pass on his No.1 jersey.