Hurricanes maintain unbeaten run
Dunedin - Scrumhalf TJ Perenara scored a 72nd minute try against the run of
play to give the Wellington Hurricanes a 20-13 victory over the Highlanders in their Super Rugby clash in Dunedin on Friday.
victory ensured the Hurricanes retained their unbeaten season with their
fifth win and moved them to the top of the table on 22 points, two
ahead of Australia's Brumbies.
The Hurricanes dominated
possession and territory but kept on dropping the ball or being
penalised at the ruck and were held up over the line several times by a
tenacious Highlanders' defence.
The Dunedin-based side came alive
with around 15 minutes remaining and launched wave after wave of attack
only to be thwarted themselves.
A crunching tackle from inside
centre Ma'a Nonu on All Blacks team mate Malakai Fekitoa, his third in
about five minutes, created the turnover that led to the Hurricanes
sweeping down field for Perenara's try.
The only scoring in the
first spell was a penalty apiece to flyhalves Lima Sopoaga and Beauden
Barrett, who both also missed a shot at goal.
prop Reggie Goodes barreled over for a second half try, which was
converted by Barrett, who also added another penalty but missed another
easily kickable shot.
Sopoaga scored a try with about two minutes
remaining after Julian Savea had been yellow carded for a professional
foul and then turned possession over following a questionable call from
referee Ben O'Keefe that a long pass had gone forward.
Try: Lima Sopoaga
Penalties: Sopoaga (2)
Tries: Reg Goodes, TJ Perenara
Conversions: Beauden Barrett (2)
Penalties: Barrett (2)
15 Ben Smith (co-captain), 14 Waisake Naholo, 13 Malakai Fekitoa, 12 Shaun Treeby, 11 Patrick Osborne, 10 Lima Sopoaga, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Nasi Manu (co-captain), 7 Dan Pryor, 6 Elliot Dixon, 5 Joe Wheeler, 4 Tom Franklin, 3 Josh Hohneck, 2 Liam Coltman, 1 Brendon Edmonds
Substittutes: 16 Ash Dixon, 17 Daniel Leniert-Brown, 18 Pingi Tala'apitaga, 19 Mark Reddish, 20 Gareth Evans, 21 Fumiaki Tanaka, 22 Marty Banks, 23 Jason Emery
15 Nehe Milner-Skudder, 14 Cory Jane, 13 Conrad Smith (captain), 12 Ma’a Nonu, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Victor Vito, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Brad Shields, 5 Blade Thomson, 4 Jeremy Thrush, 3 Ben Franks, 2 Dane Coles, 1 Reggie Goodes
Substitutes:16 Motu Matu’u, 17 Ben May, 18 Chris Eves, 19 Mark Abbott, 20 Callum Gibbins, 21 Chris Smylie, 22 Rey Lee-Lo, 23 James Marshall