Rugby Union


Hurricanes snatch win with last-minute try

A last-minute try to captain Conrad Smith and some ice-cool kicking from five-eighth Beauden Barrett gave the Hurricanes a hard-earned 26-25 Super Rugby win over the Blues at Eden Park in Auckland on Friday.


It looked like the boot of Blues fullback Lachie Munro and a dominant Auckland scrum would prove too much for the Hurricanes, who conceded far too many second half penalties and appeared to have thrown the game away after an excellent free-running first half.

Munro punished the mistakes, missing just one kick all night in slotting six penalties and a conversion to push the Blues out to a 25-19 lead with less than a minute remaining.

But the Hurricanes kept running, and Barrett sliced through the midfield as the final seconds ticked away, off-loading for skipper Conrad Smith to touch down close to the posts.

Barrett calmly added the extras, and the new-look Hurricanes picked up their third win from five matches.


They started slowly but finished the first half with a 19-16 lead, jolted into action after conceding a try to ex-Hurricane and All Blacks midfielder Ma’a Nonu after 15 minutes.

Nonu was unstoppable from five metres out after a strong bullocking run from former Hurricanes halfback Piri Weepu, running the Blues backline from five-eighth.

Two minutes later, Hurricanes wing Julian Savea carved up the midfield before slipping a beautifully timed pass for fullback Andre Taylor to cross.

Wing Cory Jane added the Hurricanes’ second after Munro bumbled Taylor’s searching kick ahead.

The fullback chased hard, forced the turnover then Jane showed good strength to fend off Weepu and score in the corner.

mith stole the halftime lead for the Hurricanes when he crossed in the dying seconds of the first half after toeing ahead a sly Tim Bateman through-kick.

The Blues maintained their composure in the second stanza, aided by Weepu’s shift to halfback in place of Alby Mathewson and the return of Michael Hobbs to first five-eighth, but slipped up with a heart-breaking defensive lapse right on the final whistle.

HURRICANES 26 (Conrad Smith 2, Cory Jane, Andre Taylor tries Beauden Barrett 3 cons) bt BLUES 25 (Ma’a Nonu try Lachie Munro con 6 pens) at Eden Park. Referee: Steve R. Walsh.