Kieran Read has called time on a career that saw him win two World Cups and amass over 100 victories at Test level.
Tense finishes went in the favour of the Crusaders and the Chiefs in Super Rugby Trans-Tasman, while the Blues were emphatic victors.
Both New Zealand franchises were victorious when Super Rugby Trans-Tasman started in entertaining fashion.
Alterations have been made to the schedule for the tour of South Africa, with all matches played in either Gauteng or Cape Town.
Owen Franks is eyeing more Super Rugby success with the Hurricanes after agreeing a move back to New Zealand.
British and Irish Lion Tadhg Furlong will continue to ply his trade in his homeland for at least another season.
James O'Connor darted in for the late try that gave the Reds victory over a Brumbies side who had three players sin-binned.
Richie Mo'unga won his kicking battle with Damian McKenzie as the Crusaders triumphed in the Super Rugby Aotearoa title match.
The Wallabies will welcome fifth-ranked nation France to Australia, with games staged in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.
Warren Gatland revealed he had a hard time making the decision to leave Johnny Sexton out of his British and Irish Lions squad.