Sun, Mar 14, 2004 - Page 24 News List

Hurricanes blow away Cats 42-25

AP , WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND

Jaque Fourie of the Cats splits the Hurricane defense of Jerry Collins, left, and Ben Herring in their Super 12 match at Westpac Stadium, New Zealand, Saturday.

PHOTO: AP

Ma'a Nonu and Neemia Tialata returned from disciplinary suspensions to spur the Wellington Hurricanes to a 42-25 win over the Cats in a Super 12 rugby match Saturday.

All Blacks center Nonu scored one try and made another within the first 20 minutes to give the Hurricanes control of the match. Tialata took the field as a replacement to sustain a robust forward effort.

Both players had been suspended for undisclosed breaches of team discipline during the Hurricanes' recent two-match swing through South Africa.

A Nonu break led to the first of the Hurricanes' five tries, scored by fullback Brent Ward, and the stocky international showed strength and balance to score the second, a solo break from set play.

Tialata featured in the forward interplay which led to the third try from which the Hurricanes took a 21-6 halftime lead.

An intercept to center Tane Tuipulotu, who was a late replacement for the Hurricanes' injured captain Tana Umaga, gave the home side a four-try bonus points minutes after halftime.

Flyhalf David Holwell, returning early to the Wellington starting XV after suffering a broken hand in the first match of the season, slotted three penalties and four conversions for 17 points.

His first penalty was his 100th in Super 12 play.

Former Springboks flyhalf Andre Pretorius almost matched Holwell's effort, scoring a try and kicking two conversions and two penalties -- four from five attempts -- for 15 individual points.

The Hurricanes led 21-6 at halftime with tries to Ward, Nonu and lock Paul Tito. The third was the best, created by fine continuity and passing among the forwards and finished by Tito with a flourishing dive into the corner.

Tuipulotu anticipated a wide pass during a Cats' back movement in the 45th minute and scored the try that sealed the Hurricanes' home bonus point.

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