Laumape scores 4 as 'Canes overpower Blues
Cape Town - Ngani Laumape scored four tries as the Hurricanes claimed a
42-24 win over the Blues in their New Zealand derby in Wellington on Saturday.
The All Blacks inside centre delivered a superb attacking
display and scored a brace of tries in each half which helped set up his side's
first triumph in four matches.
23 points separated these teams in the standings before the
start of the match and it showed during the early stages which the Hurricanes
dominated before the Blues launched a brave fightback.
The home side's class shone through in the end, however, and
they eventually outscored the Blues by six tries to three.
The Blues were fastest out of the blocks and took a 3-0 lead in the
sixth minute courtesy of a Stephen Perofeta penalty after Sam Henwood infringed
at a ruck.
The Hurricanes did not take long to respond and in the 13th
minute Laumape beat a couple of defenders with a powerful run before offloading
to Julian Savea, who crossed for the opening try.
Jordie Barrett's conversion gave the Hurricanes a 7-3 lead and
10 minutes later the hosts went further ahead when Laumape ran onto a pass from
Nehe Milner-Skudder on the Blues' 10-metre line before slicing through the
visitors' defence again on his way over the tryline.
The Hurricanes, and Laumape in particular, continued to dominate
and in the 36th minute he collected a pass from TJ Perenara deep inside the
Blues' 22 and bumped off three defenders before scoring his second try.
The Blues would finish the half stronger though and two minutes
later Rieko Ioane beat three defenders before crossing for his side's opening
try. Perofeta slotted the conversion which meant the Hurricanes led 21-10 at
The visitors continued to hold the upperhand after the interval
and seven minutes into the second half Rieko Ioane went over for his second try
after Perofeta was stopped just short of the whitewash in the build-up.
The Hurricanes struck back in the 54th minute when Beauden
Barrett exploited a gap in the Blues defence before dotting down with the
conversion from his brother, Jordie, giving the hosts a 28-17 lead.
That did not deter the Blues though and after setting up some
phases inside the Hurricanes' 22, Akira Ioane dotted down to give his side a
glimmer of hope. Perofeta added the extras but that would be the last time the
men from Auckland would trouble the scoreboard as the Hurricanes dominated the
Laumape was at the centre of it all and he was rewarded with his
hat-trick in the 69th minute after the ball went through several pairs of hands
in the build-up.
And three minutes later, the Hurricanes combined brilliantly
again with Laumape poweringd his way over the tryline in trademark fashion to
seal a deserved win for his side.