Sun, Jul 10, 2016 - Page 12 News List

Barrett steers Hurricanes into quarters

BLOWN AWAY:The 25-year-old flyhalf scored all of the Hurricanes’ first-half points and contributed more in the second half to secure the visitors’ impressive victory


The Hurricanes’ Beauden Barrett yesterday scores a try in their Round 16 Super Rugby match against the New South Wales Waratahs in Sydney.

Photo: EPA

Flyhalf Beauden Barrett yesterday steered the Wellington Hurricanes into Super Rugby’s quarter-finals with 18 individual points as his side beat the New South Wales Waratahs 28-17 in Sydney.

Barrett scored a try, set up two others for Julian Savea and Cory Jane and kicked 13 points as last year’s beaten finalists advanced to 48 points in the table.

The Waratahs remained on 39 points and neither the 2014 champions nor ACT Brumbies can head off the Wellington-based side ahead of the final week of the regular season.

The worst place the Hurricanes can finish is fifth, the last playoffs spot available in the Australasian group.

Barrett scored all of the Hurricanes’ first-half points with two penalties and a try after a clever kick ahead from winger Jane had turned the Waratahs’ defense.

The home side, who struggled to get their hands on the ball, finally managed to put together a number of pick and goes near the ruck with massive winger Taqele Naiyaravoro crashing over.

Waratahs flyhalf Bernard Foley, who had converted Naiyaravoro’s try, added a penalty in the third minute following the halftime hooter after the Hurricanes had been penalized three times by Chris Pollock.

The home side moved down field and reduced the gap to 11-10 at the break.

The third penalty had resulted in Willis Halaholo spending the first 10 minutes of the second half in the sin bin and the Waratahs exploited the gap in midfield with Israel Folau crossing to give his side the lead.

Barrett, however, sparked the Hurricanes recovery, setting up Jane for a try, adding the conversion and then a penalty before his long pass put Savea into space to score and give the visitors a 28-17 lead with about 20 minutes remaining.

Crusaders 85, Rebels 26

Sam Whitelock yesterday celebrated his 100th Super Rugby cap with a try inside the opening two minutes as the Canterbury Crusaders destroyed an inept Melbourne Rebels 85-26 in Christchurch to continue their hunt for the New Zealand title.

The seven-times champions had threatened to eclipse the highest score in Super Rugby — having beaten the New South Wales Waratahs 96-19 in 2002 — but dropped their intensity in the final 15 minutes.

The Crusaders moved to 50 points on the table, one behind the New Zealand-conference leading Waikato Chiefs who thrashed the Queensland Reds 50-5 in Brisbane on Friday.

Todd Blackadder’s side had been embarrassed with their poor tactical decisions in heavy rain in the 23-13 loss to the Chiefs in Suva last week and set about dismantling the Rebels from the first whistle.

They were helped by a Rebels side who fell off first-up tackles and turned the ball over constantly with the home team seemingly scoring every time they attacked.

The Crusaders raced to a 33-0 lead inside the first quarter with tries to lock Whitelock, center Ryan Crotty, lock Scott Barrett, prop Alex Hodgman and winger Nemani Nadolo, before Jonny McNicholl gave them a 38-0 lead inside 30 minutes.

It was fitting that the Rebels’ only first-half points came from their own botched lineout following a communication breakdown with scrumhalf Nic Stirzaker scoring under the posts after winger Sefa Naivalu exploited a lazy Crusaders’ defense.

Conceding the try, however, only sparked the home side back into action with Crotty grabbing his second try on the stroke of halftime to give his side a 43-7 lead at the break.

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