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- Super Rugby
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- 26th May 2012
- KO 08:35
- Ground: Eden Park, Auckland
Blues v Highlanders - Live
full-time Blues 20 Highlanders 27
80 The Highlanders get a penalty when Nonu goes offside at a ruck and Aaron Smith hoofs the ball into touch. It signals the end of the match and although the Highlanders will be relieved, they fully deserve this result. The Blues made a fight of it but it was too little too late.
78 CONVERSION, BLUES, MUNRO! 20-27. Lachlan Munro succeeds with a difficult spot kick from the touchline to bring the home side to within a converted try of the lead.
77 TRY, BLUES, WOODCOCK! 18-27. The Blues continue to attack close to the Highlanders' try-line and Weepu offloads to Tony Woodcock who bumps off Aaron Smith before dotting down!
75 David Raikiuna is stopped just short of the line after running onto an inside pass from Michael Hobbs! The Blues awarded a penalty and opt to run it. Piri Weepu makes a dash for the line but is held up off the ground.
71 The Blues are awarded a penalty inside the Highlanders' half. They must put it into touch but there's some concern in their ranks as Anscombe is down with a leg injury.
69 CONVERSION, BLUES, NONU! 13-27. Anscombe adds another two points to offer some hope for his side.
68 TRY, BLUES, MAILAU! 11-27. The Blues pick-up and-go close to the Highlanders' try-line and when Tevita Mailau's spots a gap he forces his way over from close range!
65 The Blues are put under huge pressure at a scrum on the Highlanders' 22. The ball spills out at the side of the scrum and Scott Fuglistaller wins a valuable turnover for the visitors as he is first to the loose ball.
62 YELLOW CARD, HIGHLANDERS, BURLEIGH. Phil Burleigh is sent to the sin bin after he fails to roll away at a ruck close to his try-line.
60 CONVERSION, HIGHLANDERS, NOAKES! 6-27. Noakes adds the extras to extend his side's lead.
59 TRY, HIGHLANDERS, THOMSON! 6-25. From a line-out on the Blues' try-line, the ball is thrown deep to Adam Thomson who gets over the whitewash without having a finger laid on him.
57 Ma'a Nonu is on the field and immediately makes an impact with a line break before offloading to Hadleigh Parkes! The full-back is brought to ground inside the Highlanders' 22 but has little support. Adam Thomson does well when he dives onto the loose ball to secure valuable turnover ball for his side.
53 Nick Crosswell is penalised for not releasing the tackled player on the ground just outside his own 22 and Anscombe opts to kick for touch. His plan backfires, however, when he puts the ball out beyond the in-goal area!
51 Francis Saili does well when he launches a clearance kick from well inside his 22 which rolls into touch just inside the Highlanders' 22.
50 The Highlanders try to launch an attack from a line-out just outside the Blues' 22 but Hore is pinned for a crooked throw-in.
47 Ali Williams comes on as a replacement for Filo Paulo. it's a momentous occasion as it's the All Blacks lock's 100th Super Rugby appearance.
44 The Blues are under pressure inside their 22 and Anscombe scrambles to put in a clearance kick which goes out just outside his quarter line.
41 TRY, HIGHLANDERS, GEAR! 6-20. From Saili's kick Ben Smith gathers and goes on a run which tears the Blues defence to shreds! He is soon inside the home side's 22 and throws an inside pass to Hosea Gear who scores in the corner!
40 Noakes puts in a low kick which Peter Saili gathers and returns with a kick of his own upfield.
Half-time Blues 6 Highlanders 15
40 From a scrum, Cowan puts the ball into touch and the referee blows his whistle to signal half-time. Although the Blues started brightly, the visitors came back strongly as the game progressed. It's still anybody's game though and we should be in for an entertaining second half.
38 Anscombe gets a chance to narrow the gap after Andrew Hore plays the ball on the ground at a ruck but the Blues pivot's effort strikes the upright!
36 CONVERSION, HIGHLANDERS, NOAKES! 6-15. Noakes holds his nerve and adds the two points from close to the touchline!
35 TRY, HIGHLANDERS, GEAR! 6-13. Hosea Gear dots down in the right hand corner after taking a lobbed pass from Kurt Baker who broke out from close to the halfway mark!
33 PENALTY, BLUES, ANSCOMBE! 6-8. Anscombe notches up his 100th point of the season after the visitors infringe at a ruck just inside their own 22.
31 Noakes spots a gap in the Blues defence and takes it. When he goes to ground he tries to offload to Jarrad Hoeata who spills it and Sherwin Stowers then kicks ahead.
28 The Blues are under the cosh inside their 22 but soon get out of jail when Highlanders skipper Jamie Mackintosh is penalised for holding onto the ball on the ground.
25 TRY, HIGHLANDERS, ELLISON! 3-8. Tamati Ellison dives onto a loose ball behind the Blues' try-line but Ben Smith deserves all the credit after he kicks the ball downfield from deep inside his 22. He gives chase but Hadleigh Parkes gathers it just in front of his own try-line. When he tries to place the ball after Smith's tackle the ball spills backwards and Ellison is the player that benefits!
23 The Blues try to launch an attack on the Highlanders' 22 but Peter Saili loses the ball in contact and the visitors gain a reprieve.
20 PENALTY, HIGHLANDERS, NOAKES! 3-3. Chris Noakes adds the extras after the Blues infringe at the scrum.
18 The Highlanders opt to take a scrum close to the Blues' try-line after Alby Mathewson is penalised for going offside at a ruck.
15 The Highlanders go on the attack from a scrum on the Blues' five metre line but Tim Boys is penalised for holding onto the ball on the ground.
12 Michael Hobbs breaks out close to the Highlanders' 22 but Phil burleigh does well to tackle him into touch.
8 PENALTY, BLUES, ANSCOMBE! 3-0. Gareth Anscombe gets the first points of this clash after the Highlanders are pinned for being offside.
5 Jimmy cowan is penalised when he plays the ball on the ground at a ruck on the edge of the Blues' 22 metre line.
2 Anscombe launches a high ball and Sherwin Stowers gives chase. The Highlanders do well though and keep it tight amongst their forwards.
Kick-off Gareth Anscombe gets us underway! His kick is gathered by Hosea Gear who offloads to one of the Highlanders forwards who immediately set up a ruck.
Team News Former All Blacks scrum-half Jimmy Cowan has been named to make his first start for the Highlanders in over two months in place of Aaron Smith. Cowan's one of five changes to the Highlanders starting line-up, with Andrew Hore (promoted ahead of hooker Jason Rutledge), Hoani MacDonald, Chris Noakes and Kurt Baker also coming into the side. Baker and Noakes come in for Siale Piutau and Mike Delany respectively, while MacDonald slots in the second row with Nick Crosswell switching to number eight to fill in for Nasi Manu.
Team News The big news is that Blues coach Pat Lam has dropped All Blacks trio, Ma'a Nonu, Ali Williams and Piri Weepu to the bench. Williams is replaced in the second row by Filo Paulo, while Weepu swaps places again with Alby Mathewson and Nonu is replaced by Francis Saili who makes his run-on debut. In other changes, Benson Stanley is replaced on the left wing by Sherwin Stowers and in the pack, hooker James Parsons will also get his first start in place of Tom McCartney.
Welcome Hello and welcome to Eden Park in Auckland for this New Zealand Super Rugby derby between the hosts, the Blues, and the Highlanders. Team news follows shortly.
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