Laumape bags four tries as Hurricanes edge closer to home quarter-final
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Laumape bags four tries as Hurricanes edge closer to home quarter-final

The Hurricanes have returned to their winning ways in Super Rugby on the back of a four-try performance from Ngani Laumape against the Blues.

Powerhouse inside-centre Laumape proved too hot to handle in a 42-24 win in Wellington on Saturday that leaves his team close to clinching a home quarter-final berth in the play-offs.

The result ends a three-match losing streak for the Hurricanes, who scored six tries to three, all converted by fullback Jordie Barrett.

Laumape became the seventh player in the competition's history to bag four tries in a match, using his trademark straight running close to the line to simply bowl defenders out of the way.

Two of the visitors' tries came from prolific All Blacks winger Rieko Ioane, who marked Laumape in the No.12 jersey.

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His tries either side of half-time left the Blues trailing 21-17.

It was 28-24 entering the closing stages after brother Akira Ioane crossed, before Laumape doubled his account in rapid fashion.

The match was the 100th in Super Rugby for Hurricanes captain and England Test flanker Brad Shields.

Winless in their last 18 Kiwi derbies, the Blues drop to second last overall and are still in danger of collecting the wooden spoon.

The Hurricanes need only avoid a heavy loss to the Chiefs in their final-round derby in Wellington next week to claim the top wildcard berth and a home quarter-final.

AAP