Blues 25 Lions 3
David Raikuna of the Blues as he offloads the ball as he is tackled by Jaco Taute of the Lions. Photo: AFP
The Blues lifted themselves off the bottom of the Super Rugby ladder with a 25-3 victory over fellow strugglers the Lions in Auckland on Friday night.
The win at Eden Park was the Auckland-based franchise's second of the season and ended seven defeats in a row.
But the result continued the misery for their South African opponents, who are the new cellar dwellers with a losing streak that has extended to nine matches.
In an often scrappy contest, the home side took advantage of their territorial advantage and a dominant scrum.
They were aided by Tony Woodcock's late addition to the starting 15 after the All Blacks prop missed the past two weeks with a calf injury.
The Lions also had winger Deon Van Rensburg yellow carded in the second half for a professional foul at a ruck close to his line.
The Blues grabbed the second of their three tries while a man up, when they disrupted an opposition scrum and replacement halfback Alby Mathewson scampered away to score.
The Lions were first on the board through an Elton Jantjies penalty.
From there, the Blues began to dominate territory.
A break by halfback Piri Weepu was followed by patience on attack that eventually resulted in centre Michael Hobbs dotting down.
Recalled rookie five-eighth Gareth Anscombe added the extras and a penalty to take the Blues to a 10-3 halftime lead.
Another Anscombe penalty nudged the Blues further ahead, but it took Mathewson's try to give the Blues some breathing space.
Skipper Luke Braid added the icing in the final minute when the flanker was driven over the line by his teammates.
BLUES 25 (Luke Braid, Michael Hobbs, Alby Mathewson tries Gareth Anscombe 2 cons 2 pens) bt LIONS 3 (Elton Jantjies pen) at Eden Park. Referee: Angus Gardner.