‘Very big result’ as Blues beat Hurricanes to go top of Super Rugby log

The Blues moved to the top of the Super Rugby standings with victory over the Hurricanes. Picture: Saeed Khan / AFP

The Blues moved to the top of the Super Rugby standings with victory over the Hurricanes. Picture: Saeed Khan / AFP

Published May 11, 2024


Harry Plummer's perfect goalkicking proved the difference as the Blues beat the Hurricanes 31-27 on Saturday to take over as Super Rugby competition leaders.

A thrilling top-of-the-table match in Auckland was decided after the final hooter as the home side repelled waves of Hurricanes attacks.

Reserve Blues scrumhalf Sam Nock ripped the ball from lock Isaia Walker-Leawere to seal his side's eighth successive win and propelled them two points ahead of their opponents on the standings.

Blues captain Patrick Tuipulotu hoped his team could retain top spot through the remaining three rounds of the regular season.

"Very big result, it was a Test match for us," he said.

"With a couple more games to go until the finals, it puts us in good stead.

"Those are the games you want to be a part of. Very tough and a see-saw battle right down to the wire."

The Blues' only loss this season under new coach Vern Cotter was a 29-21 setback in the third round against the Hurricanes in Wellington.

It was just the second defeat for the Hurricanes, who matched the Blues' four tries but weren't as accurate off the kicking tee as fly-half Plummer, who landed all five of his shots at goal.

Visiting captain Brad Shields lamented the late omission of his All Blacks prop Tyrel Lomax, lock Caleb Delaney and centre Billy Proctor -- all with undisclosed injuries before the match kicked off.

His side fell 14-5 behind after centre Bryce Heem and fullback Cole Forbes crossed for the Blues.

Josh Moorby scored on the stroke of halftime to reduce the margin to five points and they led soon after the interval when outstanding flanker Peter Lakai burrowed across the tryline.

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All Blacks winger Mark Tele'a put the Blues back in front and prop Angus Ta'avao extended the lead before veteran Hurricanes scrum-half TJ Perenara set up a dramatic finish.

Shields was disappointed his side couldn't crack the Blues defence during the tense dying minutes.

"Rugby's pretty cruel. When you get an opportunity at the end and you can't quite get there, it's gutting," Shields said.

"It was very intense, it's exactly what everyone expected."


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