Super Rugby
Savea double keeps Hurricanes unbeaten
ESPN Staff
March 13, 2015
Report Match details
Date/Time: Mar 13, 2015, 19:35 local, 06:35 GMT
Venue: FMG Stadium, Palmerston North
Hurricanes 30 - 23 Blues
Half-time: 18 - 17
Tries: Perenara, Proctor, SJ Savea 2
Cons: Barrett 2
Pens: Barrett 2
Tries: Halai, Visinia
Cons: West 2
Pens: West 3
Lolagi Visinia of the Blues crashes over to score a try, Hurricanes v Blues, Super Rugby, Palmerston North, March 13, 2015
The Blues shoed flair but just couldn't hold Hurricanes back
© Getty Images

A stunning try from Julian Savea in the 75th minute has secured the Hurricanes their fourth win of the season, as well as a four try bonus point, to remain unbeaten after four matches. In a see-sawing affair, the Blues showed some attacking flair to get ahead of the Hurricanes in the opening half, but a Savea double and tries to TJ Perenara and Matt Proctor put the Hurricanes ahead for much of the match.

The Hurricanes improved their win-loss record to 4-0 - their best ever start to the competition - and sit atop the ladder early in round five. The Blues slump to 0-5 and remain rooted to the bottom of the table. They were in the hunt throughout the fast-paced contest but lacked the finishing panache of the home side, who scored four tries to two.

Blues coach Sri John Kirwan can expect scrutiny to heighten for an extended period, with his team to undergo a bye next week. They have lost their last seven games, including the end of last season, and Kirwan has overseen 16 losses from their last 17 games away from home.

They trailed 18-17 at half-time but could only score after the break through two penalties to five-eighth Ihaia West, while All Blacks winger Savea powered over twice to cap another rousing performance. West, who kicked 13 points, missed two late penalties which would have kept his team in contention.

Opposite number Beauden Barrett kicked 10 points, including the conversion of a crucial try to winger Matt Proctor four minutes after the half-time hooter had sounded. Half-back TJ Perenara capitalised on the Hurricanes' early dominance with a try but the Blues struck back through tries to fullback Lolagi Visinia - via an 85m intercept - and wing Frank Halai.

The clash of young fullbacks Visinia and Nehe Milner-Skudder - in his first Hurricanes start - was eye-catching, with both excelling in open field. There will be some concern at the sight of Hurricanes' All Blacks hooker Dane Coles exiting in the second half with an elbow injury, although the diagnosis was unclear.

Hurricanes 30-23 Blues (video available in Australia only)
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